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AlphaCode shortlists 10 start-ups for R10m fintech programme

Lebone Mano
By Lebone Mano, junior journalist
Johannesburg, 02 Feb 2021
Andile Maseko, head of ecosystem development at AlphaCode.
Andile Maseko, head of ecosystem development at AlphaCode.

Ten South African start-ups have been shortlisted for the AlphaCode Incubate programme, a development programme that provides funding, guidance from performance coaches and a panel of advisory experts.

AlphaCode is an incubation, acceleration and investment vehicle for early-stage financial services businesses, powered by Rand Merchant Investment.

The AlphaCode Incubate programme aims to grow innovative fintech start-ups by providing funding, coaching, access to co-working space and opportunities for participants to apply for further early-stage investment.

Nearly 200 fintech businesses had applied for the intensive 12-week programme, which offers an entrepreneurial package of almost R1 500 000 for each start-up.

The next phase of the programme is the jump-start programme, which focuses on achieving a viable business. It culminates in a demo day, where participants will compete for a place in a six-month Step-up programme.

Step-up also offers each start-up grant funding of up to R500 000, and a six-month incubation focused on achieving both product-market fit and financial viability.

In addition, start-ups will be able to apply for seed capital from AlphaCode.

“We’re delighted by the quality and diversity of the applications for our programme, we’ve seen a good mix of gender, age and race,” Andile Maseko, head of ecosystem development at AlphaCode explains.

“We have selected a diverse cohort and we look forward to supporting these pioneering businesses so that they can make a meaningful impact in the financial services industry.”

The chosen 10

Bento is an out-of-the-box employee perks and benefits platform. It gives employers a simple and cost-effective solution to offer employee benefits without the cost and administrative burden.

Mapha buys and delivers goods from any local store in your area within two hours. Mapha’s service delivers any retail item and affords the option of buying from multiple stores in one trip.

OysterPay is a digital banking platform for gig workers who are largely overlooked by traditional financial institutions. It offers a prepaid debit card and mobile app that helps these workers get paid, save, and borrow.

Melonis the easiest way to invest in Bitcoin and crypto-currencies. With lightning-fast purchases and a simple user interface, Melon makes buying Bitcoin as effortless as shopping online.

AgriCoolis an e-marketplace that links smallholding farmers and buyers to a fair and reliable market. It offers farmers access to finance, reliable information on improving their production and it works with both formal and informal markets.

Imfuyo Technologies is developing a smart farming solution that will give livestock farmers better oversight of their operations at viable cost points. The initial offering will consist of a smart tracker that will collect critical data about cattle location and behaviour. helps athletes better commercialise their careers. It integrates into existing social media channels and stats to showcase the value of an athlete’s digital audience to potential sponsors. It also offers a plug and play e-commerce store where fans can purchase everything from bespoke branded merchandise to personalised video and audio shout-outs.

Varibillis a billing and revenue management tool, ideal for providers of usage-based products and services. It provides specialised software plug-ins, called source collectors, that interrogate various disparate sources or devices and then translates the usage data into billing data.

Chama Moneyenables stokvels to operate online in an easy, safe and transparent way whilst giving them access to retail, insurance, and financial products from trusted providers. The platform has automated processes like bookkeeping, accounting and payments.

DentX is a machine learning platform for vehicle damage repair pricing that empowers vehicle or fleet owners with data for competitive quotations. The DentX machine learning platform connects real-time aggregation of approved service providers with machine learning to give more accurate estimations per line item.