Arabnet gives us the jist of Amazon’s acquisition of Souq.com. Simply put, why start from scratch when you can just buy what you need? When you wish to enter a market it might be the best shortcut you can ever get your hands on. While the acquisition value was not disclosed, it is believed to be $650M. The deal also includes PayFort, Souq.com’s payment platform. Amazon now has an excellent opportunity to sell Kindles and Prime to the Middle East. More here.
In the bosom of the mother of the world, we are no strangers to mental institution inviting roaming charges. Somebody decided to do something about it. But that something is more or less hacking the system, but in an overt way. Put your SIM in a router like device before you leave home, and that device will “internet” your calls for you through a proprietary app. Clever thinking, if only you can also guarantee your internet connection at home. This piece is about Voxera that was founded as a reaction to massive roaming bills and was even launched using Kickstarter crowd funding money. $20K in 5 days! Post EGP flotation!
Wamda is hosting Mix N’ Mentor on April 22. This is an event where entrepreneurs get to mingle with experienced investors, mentors and other veteran entrepreneurs. Should be an excellent opportunity to discuss the challenges facing any startup on the micro-level and gain insights into basics such as fundraising, team building and business development. The event will be held at Kind Saud University in Riyadh. More here.
Cassablancan startup Moteur.ma secures undisclosed investment amount from a Malaysian investor. What caught our eye at Tekqio was that Moteur.ma specializes in used car classifieds. They say they will use the cash to move into the new car market and offer different services for each market including price comparison and valuation tools. More here.
A15 has done quite a bit in the world of startups in Egypt and now they signed a partnership agreement with DELL EMC to give more to the startup universe in Egypt. This is an important addition to its portfolio. Dell EMC will provide ‘the required support, guidance, and expertise’ along side funding. According to Fadi Antaki, Egypt’s main challenge to startups is funding. More here.
Arabnet has wind down this year’s Cairo’s Startup Battle and shined a spotlight on a host of interesting Cairo Based Startups. They put together a list for all of us to see. From Chatbots to Food.
‘Today, WikiLeaks publishes the third installment of its Vault 7 CIA leaks. We’ve already had the Year Zero files which revealed a number of exploits for popular hardware and software, and the Dark Matter batch which focused on Mac and iPhone exploits.’
‘Now we have Marble to look at. A collection of 676 source code files, the Marble cache reveals details of the CIA’s Marble Framework tool, used to hide the true source of CIA malware, and sometimes going as far as appearing to originate from countries other than the US.’ A tiny zip file (0.5MB) shows the “magic” behind this CIA cyber-weapon. Of course the announcement has damaging effects on the policy level but the reveal also shows some nasty false flag intentions. Clandestine services can really play the dirty game.
At Tekqio sometimes we’d get the urge to just plug our smartphones into a big screen, hook up a keyboard and get into a typing frenzy to get more stuff done. We distinctly remember a while back a company that had already made a phone that would dock into a screen+keyboard unit (physically looks identical to a laptop) giving laptop like functionality along those lines. If you remember that, drop us a line. Anyways, the guys over at Arstechnica are giving us a run down of the ‘Samsung Dex’ announcement. $150 to turn your shiny new S8 into a desktop computer. Read about it here.
In other news:
Out of Africa: the Egyptians are coming
Walk like an Egyptian
What Early-Stage Investors Actually Look For
Scientists Discover Way to Transmit Taste of Lemonade Over Internet
(ed: When licking Nintendo Switch cartridges gave someone an idea. J/K.)
April fools? The date matches. What do you think?
P.S.: We are taking the next couple of weeks off. Let us know if you’d like us to change anything for when we come back. Yell in our collective ear here.