MultiChoice Innovation Fund gives innovators a break

What does an online delivery service, a payment solutions provider, an online publication and a film and television production company have in common? Young and passionate entrepreneurs funded by the MultiChoice Innovation Fund.

This support was crucial during the past year’s COVID-related challenges. The Fund provided much-needed financial support to the eight beneficiaries, all-black majority-owned small businesses, which helped them to create 47 new jobs.

Here are the eight companies that have been added to the growing list of MultiChoice Innovation Fund beneficiaries.

  1. Bubblegum Club: Born as a cultural intelligence agency, it has grown into a digital publication and a content production studio.
  2. Duma Collective: A 100% black female-owned creative communications agency.
  3. Mzansi Live: A Pan African independent multimedia management company, who developed Mzansi2Cario, a broadcast media marketplace
  4. Swypa Deliveries uses door-to-door scooters to deliver goods and services for township-based businesses for orders placed through their app
  5. The Plug: 100% independently black woman-owned online publication focusing on all aspects of urban culture
  6. The Throne: A 100% black woman-owned boutique agency specialising in influencer marketing, social media strategy, talent management and the home of The Throne Magazine
  7. Whoosh Innovations: A 100% Black, Youth-Owned payment solutions provider based in Tshwane
  8. Yellowbone Entertainment: a film and television production company, focusing on bringing authentic black South African content to international markets

“Partnering with the MultiChoice Innovation Fund has helped us to step up our dreams. We were able to respond to market developments a lot quicker – and were even able to employ additional staff. In these tough times, that’s saying something,” said Founder of The Throne publication, Caron Williams.

The past year also saw an explosion in demand for online content. The Fund responded by focusing on empowering and collaborating with online content creators to scale up to meet this growing demand. The Plug, The Throne, Bubblegum Club and Duma Collective are dynamic digital businesses that are reshaping how South African content is consumed.

The Fund’s aim is to fast track entrepreneurs to industry leadership in the technology, e-commerce, digital content, film and production industries. It provides black majority-owned start-up entrepreneurs and established SMEs with the necessary tools, skills and financial support to enable them to bring their business ideas to life. Businesses driven by women and young people receive priority.

Since its re-launch early in 2020, more entrepreneurs have been added to the Fund. Currently, businesses owned by women make up over half of the portfolio and a third are youth owned.

South Africans pride themselves on coming up with innovative solutions to today’s challenges – these businesses embody that spirit, and we are proud to support them to bring their dreams to life. Small businesses are vital to our economic growth as they create much needed jobs. That’s why our Innovation Fund focuses on this sector – we’re committed to play our part to make a meaningful impact on our economy,” commented Nyiko Shiburi, MultiChoice SA CEO.

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