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GrindstoneX, Naspers Lab reveal first cohort of female entrepreneurs

Grindstone, in partnership with Naspers Labs, has announced the first 10 female entrepreneurs to benefit from its female entrepreneur accelerator programme, GrindstoneX. GrindstoneX was formally launched in September 2022 with the intention to assist female-founded businesses to become more investible, scalable, and exit-ready.
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The successful companies are: Africa Beyond 4IR, Blushproof, Chicken Bar, Four Minute Medicine, Seponono Africa, Abaguquli, Thetha Digital, Tsehla Holdings, Wisi-oi Marketplace, and Young Rebels Marketing.

The various businesses are active in a wide range of sectors, including but not limited to, hydroponics, branding and web development, fashion marketplace, online educational content as well as digital empowerment through animation, gaming and virtual reality, among others.

“We have been intentional in our recruitment approach in all our Grindstone programmes to ensure we increase the number of businesses that are female-founded and led. This enables us to provide direct support to improve entrepreneurial opportunities equally, and to provide further springboards for
investment-ready female-founded businesses in South Africa,” says Catherine Young, partner at Grindstone.

Female founders will undergo detailed assessments and analyses of their companies, followed by carefully structured interventions, as needed. Interventions include business strategy; go-to-market planning; funding readiness and networking; and expert business coaching, including mentorship and advice from Grindstone Alumni companies that have successfully scaled or exited their businesses.

Previous alumni of Grindstone’s programmes include on-demand grocery delivery provider OneCart, which exited to Massmart; Luxity; delivery management platform Loop; and visitor management startup Wizzpass, which exited to FM:Systems in 2021.

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