The Absa-owned Rise innovation hub has selected five female entrepreneurs to take part in the inaugural Rise Scalarator, which aims to drive diversity within the entrepreneurial ecosystem and support female-owned businesses.
Five black female-owned ventures have been selected to form the first cohort of the Scalarator, which features 12 weeks of intensive coaching, access to an advisory board, financial management and modelling tools, as well as monthly networking opportunities.
The programme will culminate in a live pitch to investors hosted at Rise in November.
The five startups selected include Lily Brinjal, founded by Miriam Vallie, which operates an online store of locally-produced creative item; Boudoir Box – an online store focused on sourcing locally-produced, luxury, designer lingerie for the plus-size market – founded by Tarryn Cardre Abrahams.
SintuOnline, founded by Mpho Kate Sekwele, aims to promote African heritage to a global customer base with its platform for African designers and craftspeople to showcase their products; while Rydwith Holdings Security Tech, founded by Santina Iya, has developed a wearable panic button that allows the user to share their location coordinates to local police, private security and loved ones.
The list is completed by Zedek Fibre Telecomms, founded by Lizzy Katlego Mabena – a fibre infrastructure provider committed to enabling internet connectivity for all with a focus on schools, hospitals and hard-to-reach communities.