This afternoon the Oxygen Tank has had a visit from Silicon Cape Initiative, a trade mission bringing South African tech start up teams to the UK to showcase their business and develop relations.
When Simon McCann from Launch48 brought the 9 South African teams, they first sat down for a chat with Mark Hales. Oxygen was introduced and familiarised with Silicon Cape and vice versa. Mark Commented ‘I was really interested in the approach Silicon Cape have taken to a vision we both share; to create a tech ecosystem which draws in the brightest talents from the industry. After chatting to the guys who have come on the mission I can see there’s some really bright people here with some well established and promising startups’.
Differences between the Oxygen’s Accelerator programme and the Silicon Cape initiative were noted by Dave from Myna; ‘The set-up of Silicon Cape is really interesting, It’s not owned or controlled by any single entity. Totally organic, living community which means it develops naturally, driven from the people within. Thats exciting!’.
After speaking with Mark , Silicon Cape came and had some pizza with the Oxygen teams and spent the afternoon speaking in one to ones; introducing each others business, and exchanging useful tips and contacts.
Matt from EatSocial noted; ‘Its been really valuable to chat to these guys. They have all been up and running for at least 6 months and most have run successful tech companies before their current project-they are where we hope to be in the future, making their start up dreams a reality (i.e bringing in revenue!).’. ‘There is also a really different culture operating which was great to observe; so enthusiastic and go-getting. None of this British stiff upper lip nonsense, they all have really positive attitudes.’ Too much sunshine I say, bah.
Their visit also opened our eyes to the differences between the tech scene in the UK versus South Africa. Gehard Sevenster from Mytcg Technology commented ‘Only about 6 million people are on the internet in South Africa so doing tech there is a great place to test ideas. And the majority of people are not as tech savvy as in the UK or US; its not all I Phones and Androids so we have developed our product to work on older, more basic technologies. This gives us a solid grounding and an opportunity to really test our ideas before scaling up to the modern products used in Europe and America.‘
Seems like the Cape is ripe for exciting and innovative tech development’s. So watch out world- the South Africans are coming!