SA startup job numbers fall from late 2016

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The amount of startup jobs available in South Africa has dropped since the end of last year, indicating a decrease in startup activity in the country.

This is according to data from job aggregator Adzuna, which says the number of startup jobs dropped from over 1,000 in late 2016 to just over 750 at the start of 2017.

“While not all startups require numerous employees or advertise for these online, many do, allowing ample inference into the sector as a whole,” said Adzuna South Africa country manager Jesse Green.

“The startup scene in South Africa has definitely grown over the past five years, however the recent job data suggests a downturn in activity. Are entrepreneurs simply hiring less or are there less startups? Data further down the line in 2017 will possibly show a trend.”

Gauteng accounts for around 50 percent of the vacancies, reconfirming a previous Adzuna report that Johannesburg had overtaken Cape Town as the startup hub of South Africa.

The Western Cape accounted for 30 per cent of jobs, followed by Kwazulu-Natal with 10 per cent and the remaining jobs scattered across mostly urban areas.

The roles advertised averaged an annual salary of around ZAR355,000 (US$27,000), with certain areas commanding higher figures. Job growth in the fintech sector has skyrocketed since the start of 2016. Average salaries in fintech in South Africa are now at an all-time high of ZAR610,991 (US$47,000).

“And that itself is nothing new, since over 40% of the skills sought among startup jobs are for developers, who build and maintain the software or systems required to offer the various innovative products and services,” said Green.

“These skills are rare enough for companies to find overall, let alone for those new firms that are starting up from scratch with precious funding.”

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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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