2 startups offered $150k investment at Sparkup! Live

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Startups Intelworld and Vula Mobile were offered a total of US$150,000 in funding from investors at the Sparkup! Live pitching event held in Cape Town yesterday, an increase on the ZAR1 million (US$83,000) raised by participants last year.

Disrupt Africa reported yesterday the Sparkup! Live competition was set to take place, with five startups – Tyrenet, Erato, IntelWorld, Vula Mobile and Gummie – looking to follow in the footsteps of Ekaya, 8Bit and Shopstar, who all earned funding last year.

Sparkup! Live has run alongside the annual Net Prophet conference in Cape Town since 2011 and involves three days of intense business grooming followed by a live audience investor pitch session.

Ugandan startup Intelworld, which builds systems allowing business to transact with mobile devices, was offered ZAR700,000 (US$60,000) in funding by Paul Rutherford, Silicon Cape chair Daniel Guasco and Matt Bresler, while Vula Mobile, which has built a health app that allows eye tests to be carried out more quickly and effectively, was offered ZAR1.1 million (US$90,000) by Ernst Hertzog, Brett Commaille from AngelHub Ventures and Vasili Sofiadellis.

The deals will only be completed subject to due diligence and the agreement of term sheets, but Vula Mobile business lead Dylan Edwards told Disrupt Africa he hoped to finalise the startup’s funding soon.

“We will be going through their due diligence process soon, and hope to be able to announce the deals soon,” he said.

“We are currently raising our first seed round of investment to expand our platform to medical specialisations other than eye health.”

Edwards said the weekend programme that preceded the event was “incredibly valuable” for Vula Mobile.

“The final is a great platform to get in front of an audience of potential partners,” he said.

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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