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Programme launched to grow tech ecosystem in Western Cape –

The Western Cape Government’ has launched the region’s first programme dedicated to strengthening the local tech startup ecosystem….

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The Western Cape Government’s Digital Economy Unit within the Department of Economic Development and Tourism has launched the region’s first programme dedicated to strengthening the local tech startup ecosystem.

The launch of the programme further affirms the Western Cape as Africa’s tech hub

Titled the DashTech programme, it aims to support the region’s tech ecosystem by optimising growth for local tech startups and enabling job creation in the digital economy of the Western Cape.

David Maynier, Western Cape Government’s Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities sheds light on the launch of the new programme and its overall aims.

“To further strengthen our position as Africa’s tech capital, Digital Economy Unit in the Department of Economic Development, have launched the first DashTech programme to build on the local startup culture, to support the tech ecosystem and create an enabling environment for future growth and job creation in the digital economy in the Western Cape.”

The DashTech programme

The programme kicked off its first session of events in November, coinciding with ‘tech month’ in the region. The programme held events that facilitate a platform where startups could connect with potential investors, generate innovative ideas, collaborate with other businesses, enter new markets, improve local product development, and more.

With an innovative approach, the DashTech programme aims to fill existing gaps within the funding scene along with available accelerators and incubators.

The Dash-Tech programme held in November 2020 covered the following areas of the tech ecosystem:

  • ScreenTech: This refers to technologies that operate using any form of a digital screen. ScreenTech is used to connect people to film, multimedia, gaming, animation, mobile, etc.
  • SafetyTech: This relates to safety and security-related technologies that encourage safe and cohesive communities.
  • Fintech: This refers to financial technology which includes mobile payments, and e-wallets, to improve and automate financial service delivery.
  • TownshipTech: This is an adaptation of the ‘Smart Cities’ concept which builds innovative tech solutions geared towards local township communities specified to their conditions.
  • 4IRTech: The Fourth Industrial Revolution that is tech-based includes Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Blockchain, additive manufacturing, the Internet of Things, and other emerging technologies.
  • Following the launch of the Western Cape’s tech ecosystem initiative, the Dash-Tech programme is an extension of the region’s intentions to establish itself as the continent’s tech hub. (see this story)

    The programme’s overall objective is to create the best environment for companies to come together and drive business growth which will contribute to the economy in the Western Cape.

    According to a statement by the Western Cape Government, the region is home to ‘many tech and digital businesses’ that are primarily based in Cape Town and Stellenbosch.

    Various companies include Silicon Cape Initiative, Loudhailer, IEASA Interactive Entertainment South Africa), CiTi (Cape Innovation and Technology Initiative) and KPMG will function as hosts for DashTech programme events.

    The programmes overall objective is to create the best environment for companies to come together and drive business growth which will contribute to the economy in the Western Cape.

    Read more: Western Cape launches tech ecosystem initiative
    Read more: Google invests R2.2-billion into Western Cape

    Featured image: Finding Dan | Dan Grinwis via Unsplash

    “To further strengthen our position as Africa’s tech capital, Digital Economy Unit in the Department of Economic Development, have launched the first DashTech programme to build on the local startup culture, to support the tech ecosystem and create an enabling environment for future growth and job creation in the digital economy in the Western Cape.”

    Source: https://ventureburn.com/2020/12/programme-launched-to-grow-tech-ecosystem-in-western-cape/

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    Cointelegraph

    Massachusetts regulator seeks to revoke Robinhood’s broker-dealer license

    Massachusetts’ securities regulator is seeking to revoke the broker-dealer license of cryptocurrency-friendly stock trading app Robinhood in the state.

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    State regulators claim that Robinhood has targeted inexperienced investors.

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    Massachusetts regulator seeks to revoke Robinhood's broker-dealer license

    Massachusetts’ securities regulator is seeking to revoke the broker-dealer license of cryptocurrency-friendly stock trading app Robinhood in the state.

    William Galvin, the head of the state’s securities division, said in a new administrative complaint that Robinhood has “continued a pattern of aggressively inducing and enticing trading among its customers — including Massachusetts customers with little or no investment experience,” Bloomberg reports Thursday.

    The new filing is a follow-up to a complaint filed by Galvin’s office in December 2020, alleging that Robinhood’s marketing illegally targeted inexperienced investors.

    The state pointed to Robinhood’s recent activity, including a promotion that provides customers with cash rewards based on new deposits, as proof of a “firm culture which has not changed.”

    Robinhood responded to the new complaint, arguing that the action could prevent “millions of Bay Staters” from accessing their platform. In December, the company said that its platform had nearly 500,000 customers in Massachusetts.

    The firm has filed a lawsuit seeking to invalidate a recently adopted fiduciary rule in Massachusetts that state regulators have accused it of violating. Adopted in 2020, the rule requires broker-dealers to act in their clients’ best interest.

    “The Massachusetts Securities Division’s new Fiduciary Rule exceeds its authority under both Massachusetts state law and federal law,” Robinhood said. “Robinhood is a ‘self-directed’ brokerage firm that does not make investment recommendations or provide investment advice. By its own terms, the new rule does not apply to self-directed firms,” the firm noted in the lawsuit.

    Robinhood has faced mounting pressure from regulators and users alike after it became involved in the controversial GameStop stop short-squeeze. Robinhood halted buying for GameStop stock in January 2021, drawing the ire of the trading community.

    Last year, 20-year-old Robinhood user Alex Kearns committed suicide after seeing a $730,000 negative balance on his Robinhood app. A note on his computer reportedly posed the question, “How was a 20 year old with no income able to get assigned almost a million dollars worth of leverage?” In February 2021, Kearns’ parents filed a lawsuit against Robinhood over his death.

    Robinhood has been also experiencing a number of technical issues, reportedly causing major losses for traders and triggering further legal action against the company.

    The most recent such event occurred on Thursday when Robinhood’s crypto trading platform ran into technical issues as Dogecoin (DOGE) hit a new all-time high of $0.27.

    Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/massachusetts-regulator-seeks-to-revoke-robinhood-s-broker-dealer-license

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    Entrepreneur

    Penny Stocks To Buy For Under $1 On Robinhood

    Are Penny Stocks Under $1 on Robinhood Worth It?

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    Free Book Preview Money-Smart Solopreneur

    This book gives you the essential guide for easy-to-follow tips and strategies to create more financial success.

    April 15, 2021 6 min read

    This story originally appeared on PennyStocks

    3 Penny Stocks to Watch That Are Trading Higher Today

    Many penny stocks have shown bullish action in April. While there are bad days in the market, investors seem hopeful about the future. Some of this can be attributed to recent positive updates about the pandemic. In the U.S., COVID cases have rapidly declined in the past month alone. This is in part due to the millions of vaccine doses that have been distributed.

    According to the most recent data, 36% of the population has received at least one dose of a vaccine. Because of this, many believe that economic recovery could occur in the coming months. Additionally, factors like solid retail numbers and low unemployment, show that the future could be bright. As a result, many penny stocks are increasing in value.

    If you are looking to invest in penny stocks, there are a few options. While you can buy stocks under $5 through many brokers, traders have recently turned to newer platforms. This includes those like Robinhood and WeBull. In the past, buying and selling stocks was a rather tedious process for non-institutional investors. However, the rise of easy-to-use brokers and social platforms like Reddit has increased the number of retail traders out there.

    And while these platforms are easy to use, they often won’t allow access to OTC or over-the-counter markets. This is where a large portion of penny stocks reside. While finding stocks under $1 can be challenging on Robinhood, there are plenty of them out there to take a closer look at.

    [Read More] 4 Reddit Penny Stocks to Watch Before the End of the Month

    Before you dive headfirst into penny stocks, it’s worth noting that they can be more volatile than blue chips. While it depends on the sector, in general, stocks under $5 and especially those under $1 can carry a high-risk profile. That being said, there are lots of penny stocks to watch in April 2021. With this in mind, here are three that posted large movements on April 15th.

    Penny Stocks To Buy For Under $1

    ToughBuilt Industries Inc.

    ToughBuilt Industries is a company that has been trading heavily off of speculation in the past few days. Before we get into why; let’s talk about what the company does. ToughBuilt is a manufacturer of home improvement items and construction-related products. It offers everything from tool belts and tool bags to storage solutions, saws, and more. On March 26th, the company released an update that most likely affected its intraday trading volume.

    This update came as ToughBuilt released its fiscal 2020 results. In the results, TBLT announced revenue growth of 106% to $39.4 million. Additionally, its gross profit shot up by 162% to $14.7 million. This is compared to $5.6 million in the previous year. Both of these numbers represent sizable gains and show that fundamentals might actually be driving its recent price action.

    “ToughBuilt has demonstrated strong fundamentals based on execution team, customer relationships, balance sheet, commitment to research and development and continued customer service.”

    CEO of ToughBuilt, Michael Panosian

    This year, Toughbuilt is focusing on building out its product lines as well as its global distribution. It aims to offer a wider range of products as well as new and innovative equipment.

    Despite TBLT falling in value on April 15th, this balance sheet could have larger implications for the long term. It’s common to see a stock either move up or down very quickly on the day of a balance sheet release. Because its numbers are quite good, TBLT stock could be worth watching in the coming days.

    Penny_Stocks_to_Watch_ToughBuilt_Industries_TBLT_Stock_ChartGreat Panther Mining Ltd.

    If you’ve invested in the market in 2021, you’ve probably seen the solid performance of the mining industry. During that time, many mining penny stocks like GPL, have jumped up in value.

    One of the driving factors of this is the increasing prices of gold and silver. Because of fears of long-term inflation, investors have turned to safe-haven assets like precious metals. This includes gold and silver. As we turn the corner in April, many mining stocks are continuing to carry this momentum.

    Great Panther Mining is a perfect example of the solid momentum with mining stocks right now. GPL operates as a mining and exploration company based out of Canada. It explores and mines gold, silver, lead, copper, and zinc ores at its facilities. While it does mine non-precious metals, its main focus is on gold and silver. Because of this, it’s no surprise that shares of GPL have increased alongside the precious metals industry.

    [Read More] Penny Stocks and the Coinbase IPO: What Cryptocurrency Has to Do With Small-Cap Stocks

    On April 13th, Great Panther reported its first-quarter 2021 production results. In the report, GPL showed solid growth in its mining operations. It also engaged in several big advancements which allowed it to mostly avoid pandemic-related losses. With these results, Great Panther is on track to meet its proposed guidance for 2021.

    While production numbers were low in the first quarter of the year, this was all a part of its roadmap. The company states that “The first quarter was planned to be a low production quarter due to heavy stripping. Production is expected to ramp up quarter-over-quarter for the remainder of the year as mining progresses into sectors with lower strip ratios.”

    When this was announced, shares of GPL spiked higher during intraday trading. While it did pull back slightly, this seems to be the result of a natural correction. On April 15th, GPL began to see positive momentum once again. During the trading day, GPL shot up by almost 3% to $0.79 per share. With this exciting news in mind, is GPL stock worth watching?

    Penny_Stocks_to_Watch_Great_Panther_Mining_Limited_GPL_Stock_ChartCastor Maritime Inc.

    Castor Maritime is a shipping company that works with dry bulk cargoes. This includes everything from flour to building materials and more. During the pandemic, companies like Castor have increased greatly in popularity. However, its recent momentum can be attributed to three factors in particular.

    First, on April 5th, it announced the pricing of a $125 million registered direct offering. It will be issuing 192.3 million common shares at $0.65 per share. This is always exciting as it helps to bring in new capital for potential business expansion. Additionally, it can help to make investors feel more comfortable with a company’s balance sheet.

    Second, on April 9th, Castor announced that it had acquired a 2011 Japanese-built Panamax dry bulk carrier vessel from a third party for $18.48 million. This is big news for the company as it shows it is expanding its fleet. The company is currently focused on bringing in as much business as possible. This is where the ship acquisition comes in.

    Lastly, on April 14th, Castor announced deliveries of the M/V Magic Twilight and M/V Magic Thunder. These are two Korean and Japanese-built dry bulk carriers. Again, this will help to boost its fleet count as well as its carrying capacity. While these updates may seem small, they provide solid insight into what Castor is doing right now. Considering this, is CTRM worth watching?

    Penny Stocks to Watch Castor Maritime (CTRM Stock Chart)

    [Read More] 4 Penny Stocks On Robinhood To Buy Under $1; 50%-270% Price Targets

    If you are looking to invest in penny stocks, there are a few options. While you can buy stocks under $5 through many brokers, traders have recently turned to newer platforms. This includes those like Robinhood and WeBull. In the past, buying and selling stocks was a rather tedious process for non-institutional investors. However, the rise of easy-to-use brokers and social platforms like Reddit has increased the number of retail traders out there.

    Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/entrepreneur/latest/~3/oEVfyBd5nrE/369549

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    Crunchbase

    C2i Genomics Secures $100M Note To Detect Tiny Traces of Cancer

    C2i’s cancer diagnostics service uses AI pattern recognition and whole-genome analysis to spot trace amounts of cancer much quicker.

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    Cancer intelligence company C2i Genomics is developing a platform that can perform a whole-genome sequencing using only 2 milliliters of blood, as well as provide 100x more sensitive cancer detection than competitors, according to company co-founder and CEO Asaf Zviran.

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    On Thursday, the New York-based company announced a $100 million convertible note to accelerate the clinical development and commercialization of its platform. Behind the note is a group of investors including Casdin Capital, NFX, Duquesne Family Office, Section 32, iGlobe Partners and Driehaus Capital. Additional participation came from The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research, Silver Lake, Alexandria Real Estate, Gordon Asset Management and LionBird.

    How it works

    C2i’s cancer diagnostics service uses artificial intelligence pattern recognition and the whole-genome analysis to spot trace amounts of cancer much quicker, in about a week, to inform better treatment decisions and ultimately save lives. The company aims to help patients avoid unnecessary overtreatment with toxic chemotherapy or radiation, as well as to prevent them from going without treatment while cancer quietly grows and metastasizes.

    That’s important to Zviran who is a cancer survivor and has supported family members through their cancer diagnoses and treatments. Previously in the defense sector in Israel, he was diagnosed with cancer at 28 years old.

    “After I went through surgery, I spent most of my time talking to oncologists to understand how treatment optimization works and how they had a lack of tools to do that in an effective manner,” Zvrian said. “I went back to school and got my Ph.D. in genomics and focused on how to use blood samples to monitor cancer.”

    He developed the technology for the origins of C2i Genomics for three years before getting to the point where he felt he could create the company in late 2019.

    Investment

    With the note, the company has raised a total of $113.2 million in venture-backed capital, including a $12 million Series A round in 2020, according to Crunchbase data.

    “It was a quick fundraising that started in January,” Zvrian said. “We initially looked at equity, but decided with the rapid growth of the company, the market, and the commercialization potential, we thought it would be better to do a note to give us flexibility going into the next fundraising event. We received strong interest, but it was important to choose the right partners.”

    James Currier, general partner at NFX, feels the same way. He became acquainted with C2i Genomics through his colleague, NFX’s Head of Bio Omri Amirav-Drory. The seed investor came in for C2i’s seed in August 2019 and stayed for its Series A and the note.

    What C2i has been able to do is establish clinical trials with six institutions around the world and prove its technology with data, Currier said.

    “The technology, AI and software they built is more sensitive and accurate than others on the market,” he added. “It is time to ramp up the testing and approvals. They have six trials right now, but there are other institutions wanting to be seven, eight and nine. To staff up those CLIA labs, they’ll need cash.”

    Growth

    Meanwhile, with the note closed, Zvrian intends to move quickly from technology development and validation to scale-up commercialization. The funds will be used on R&D, adding staff and getting technology into the clinic. The company also aims to launch its diagnostic indication in the U.S. and Europe.

    C2i has a CLIA (Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments) lab in Massachusetts and an R&D center in Israel. The CLIA lab was the result of C2i’s acquisition of QNA Dx in March, Zvrian said.

    “We are working at better detection,” he added. “We have almost 40 employees and plan to double that number by the end of the year. Our solution is still very new on the market, and with improvement in performance we can do clinical applications not done before. With a cloud environment, every clinical lab will be able to use this to do detection and monitoring.”

    Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

    Stay up to date with recent funding rounds, acquisitions, and more with the Crunchbase Daily.

    C2i’s cancer diagnostics service uses artificial intelligence pattern recognition and the whole-genome analysis to spot trace amounts of cancer much quicker, in about a week, to inform better treatment decisions and ultimately save lives. The company aims to help patients avoid unnecessary overtreatment with toxic chemotherapy or radiation, as well as to prevent them from going without treatment while cancer quietly grows and metastasizes.

    Source: https://news.crunchbase.com/news/c2i-genomics-secures-100m-note-to-detect-tiny-traces-of-cancer/

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