WDB Investment increases equity stake in Seed Engine to 51%

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WDB Investment Holdings has increased its stake in Seed Engine, incorporating Seed Academy and the WDB Seed Fund from 35% to 51%, officially confirming Seed Engine as a proudly 51% black women owned company.

Venture capital company Grovest is Seed Engine’s second major shareholder with a 30% stake.

The increased share underscores the long-standing relationship between WDB and Seed Engine and their joint commitment to the transformation of the South African economy through the development of black women and youth entrepreneurs.

Seed Engine incorporates Seed Academy, an entrepreneur activation business, as well as the WDB Seed Fund, a Section 12J fund focused on growth-stage businesses.

Donna Rachelson, Seed Engine Chief Executive Officer says WDB’s impeccable track record of fast-tracking women entrepreneurs speaks for itself.

“We know that growing entrepreneurship is one of the biggest challenges facing our country. We also know that the development of women entrepreneurs is an even greater challenge as only one in three entrepreneurs are women and only 38% of black women owned businesses are formally funded. WDB and Seed Engine are focused on making a meaningful impact by supporting entrepreneurs who are resilient and able to build sustainable businesses that create jobs,” explains Rachelson.

The WDB Seed Fund provides access to funds, markets, high level mentorship and business support to investee companies, whilst simultaneously offering significant tax benefits for corporate and individual investors.

WDB, incorporating the WDB Trust and WDB Investment Holdings, has a 25-year track record of delivering high-impact socio-economic programmes dedicated to increasing the participation of women in the South African economy. Faith Khanyile, CEO of WDB Investment Holdings says the partnership serves both the business and social agenda of WDB in promoting true socio-economic transformation to ensure women are economically self-reliant.

“WDBIH’s increased investment in Seed Engine comes from a well-established strategic partnership and we are confident that our shared vision will continue to provide strong leadership and advocacy for female entrepreneurs.”

Khanyile adds that the creation of more business opportunities for women is of vital importance which led WDB to increase its stake to 51%.

“We are fully confident that our mission of ensuring even more women are equipped to compete successfully in the South African economy will come to full fruition. The fact that women entrepreneurs are currently underrepresented in relation to the population is something we aim to change one success story at a time.”

This transaction also comes at the recent conclusion of the inaugural and highly successful AccelerateHer programme, a three-month business accelerator for female entrepreneurs – a joint initiative of WDB and Seed Academy which creates a pipeline for the WDB Seed Fund.

“Constructively engaging women entrepreneurs is critical to supporting economic growth. Women entrepreneurs support and uplift their families, their communities, and have the power to profoundly uplift South Africa as a whole,” says Rachelson.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Thabo Mphahlele is the BizNis Africa Head of Sales and Marketing. Mphahlele was previously MultiChoice Production Support Analyst responsible for developing and monitoring applications. In addition, Mphahlele develops and automates batch scripts and is responsible for the daily infrastructure maintenance at MultiChoice. As a Production Support Analyst, he is responsible for incident analysis solving , developing and constructing business reports for SQL and Oracle and implement change controls for the business. Additional responsibility includes monitoring system performance via SOA, Kibaba (Elasticsearch), H.P BSM, HP Sitescope. Mphahlele is responsible for creating infrastructure performance reports through HP Ops Analytics, monitoring payments via Splunk and in-house built-in tool and disaster recovery simulation and testing. At Nashua Mobile, he was responsible for application development and enhancing the web sites At South West Gauteng College, he was the IT Technician and Network Administrator. During his tenure at Double Digit Media, he was he focused on application and web site development for new and existing clients Mphahlele contributes as a Content Manager for BizNis Africa.

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