PRESS RELEASE DATED 3rd Aug 2020 :
SAX Employees engages Uprise.Africa to save the Airline through “Alternative” Funding option
Johannesburg, 3rd Aug 2020 – In a novel, De-risked funding strategy, a group of South African Express employees have engaged an equity funding platform, Uprise.Africa, to assist in raising the capital needed to save SA Express.
The group strongly believes that SA Express (SAX) is a national asset that should be salvaged and definitely not liquidated. They further believe that the company is a viable business and if rescued with the correct strategy, could be a very profitable one.
“Liquidating SAX translates into slicing through the very artery that feeds the minor towns and cities in SA, and closing the gateway to our more rural areas,” said SAX spokesperson Michael Hlatshwayo in a statement.
“One of the major factors in improving our economy, would be to stimulate internal travel by South Africans taking ‘sho’t lefts’ through the country. Without a skilled carrier such as SAX, this becomes difficult for many everyday South Africans.”
In addition to the loss of access to cities and towns, liquidating SAX will have a massive detrimental effect on the staff. SAX directly employs skilled and moderately skilled South Africans. 60% of these citizens are in the minor cities, providing jobs, livelihoods and a vital economic lifeline to thousands of people in the cities. 30% of the staff complement come from the rural areas where skills are severely underdeveloped, but with the assistance from companies such as SAX, skills could be recognized and developed.
“The airlines internal financial troubles stem from political interference in its operations, nepotism, poor controls and poor management, exacerbated by external challenges – we can change this! “added Michael Hlatshwayo
“SAX’s fundamental business models are sound with small, cost-efficient aircraft, under-serviced destinations and exclusive, high-value routes. The execution of a revised business model and right-sized operation, by competent management, free of political interference, will return the airline to profitability.”
Another imperative on the agenda for SAX employees is for the Department of Enterprise to give the employees their well-deserved retrenchment packages.
A ‘survival mode’,” is important for them to emerge with stronger mindset to shape their future vision with a new perspective and lay the foundation for implementing this new approach. It takes a lot of hard work to publicize your offering and attract potential investors,” says Tabassum Qadir, the CEO of Uprise.Africa,
An initial review of the proposed Business Plan was conducted by Uprise.Africa’s Legal and Compliance team, and consequently an Expression of Interest was submitted to the Provisional Liquidator through its appointed Agents – GoIndustry DoveBid SA (PTY) LTD. The proposal will need to be approved by the liquidators, shareholders and relevant authorities.
Uprise.Africa will appoint Lufthansa Consulting to conduct further Due Diligence of the project before it goes live on the platform to its registered, accredited national and international investors.
“This is great news for SAX, the Employees and the greater South Africa as it brings a spark of hope to many businesses facing the same prospects,” says SAX spokesperson in closing.
Uprise.Africa is an equity funding platform that works with entrepreneurs, to raise capital for their businesses and provides investors with a new, alternative investment option.
Uprise.Africa is proud to be acknowledged as the “only one true equity crowdfunding platform in South Africa” by the Fin-tech Scoping report conducted by Genesis Analytics in collaboration with The World Bank and Intergovernmental Fin-Tech Working Group (IFWG) in South Africa.
Through equity crowdfunding, Uprise.Africa empowers entrepreneurs to raise between R3 million and R250 million in exchange for equity shares. Within the rapidly expanding alternative finance industry, Equity crowdfunding is emerging as a popular method for business rescue.
Equity Crowdfunding is a mechanism by which a broad group of investors can fund the project in return of Equity. The Non-Monetary motivations of Equity Crowdfunding investors, such as being part of an exciting project, or receiving non-tangible rewards can explain, why they may be willing to accept more risk or less return than traditional risk capital investors.
Since the Equity crowdfunding platform was launched, the need for a secondary market to trade the shares was recognised as an essential means of providing liquidity to the Crowd investors and this was achieved by a Joint Venture with a Stock Exchange in South Africa. Should the SA Express crowdfunding project be successful the investors will have options to trade their shares on Zarx.
The platform has been recognized both globally and locally and among many other accolades, have been awarded with the following:
• Winner of GovTech ICT Public service award for best SMME – 2019
• Winner of Fast Company – Most Innovative companies 2019
• Winner of Most innovative Online platform for Investment in South Africa – Global Business Outlook Award UK
Uprise.Africa strictly adheres to the regulated steps to be followed during crowdfunding investment campaigns, which includes: (1) a pledge being received, (2) the pledgor and the funds must clear due diligence and compliance checks, which in this case was successfully concluded by Uprise.Africa and (3) if cleared the pledgor receives a prospectus and signs a subscription agreement to becomes an investor. This whole process can take between 60 to 90 working days. The Sun Exchange/Uprise.Africa campaign raise was successful , Since then the prospectus has been completed and needed to be registered and filed with the Companies and Intellectual Properties Commission (CIPC) for a formal public offering. This step would have been the final stage of the review and approval process before we issued the Prospectus and Subscription agreement, and then, share certificates to you. But, as you are aware, the world has been in turmoil. The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown restrictions in South Africa have meant limited access to government departments, including the CIPC. At this point in time, we do not have clarity on when normality will resume with regards to halted commercial and civil activities, nor do we know what the timescales will be on the filing process with CIPC. It is with these uncertainties and unprecedented changes to the world in mind, that the Uprise.Africa Board has taken the decision to refund all investments made during our Sun Exchange equity crowdfunding campaign. This has been an immensely difficult and disappointing decision but, sadly, a very necessary one. The Uprise.Africa Board was mindful of the fact that much time had passed since your investment – significantly longer than anticipated and that there was no certainty about the issuance of shares. Uprise.Africa is a licensed financial services provider as approved by the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) of South Africa and committed to ensuring that all investor interests are looked after with utmost diligence and care. Uprise.Africa has an inbuilt “My wallet” feature, and all pledges will automatically be refunded in your “My wallet” with immediate effect. You may choose to allocate it to upcoming campaigns of your interest or navigate to your Uprise.Africa Dashboard to request a withdrawal of your pledged funds. Please update your bank details on your account should you wish to withdraw the Pledge from the Uprise Wallet. We will ensure the refund process goes as efficiently as possible. The Uprise.Africa team has appreciated being a part of this fundraising journey and wish the dedicated and passionate Sun Exchange management team all the best. Please contact the Uprise.Africa team on firstname.lastname@example.org . Should you have any further queries please feel free to contact the Uprise.Africa team on email@example.com.
Quote by ACfA
“The African Crowdfunding Association (ACfA) is an industry association for crowdfunding on the continent.
ACfA believes that the sustainable growth of crowdfunding in Africa is dependent on the appropriate regulation of the sector, and works with several regulators on the continent to implement the same.
In South Africa, the Financial Services Conduct Authority (FSCA), authorised Uprise Africa as a Financial Services Provider under the FAIS (Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services) Act in order to be able to conduct equity crowdfunding. ACfA members’ compliance with the requirements under the FAIS Act takes precedence over any compliance requirements under ACfA’s Charter of Good Conduct (COGC). As such, ACfA’s scope is limited to initiating and undertaking actions in respect of members’ compliance with the COGC.
Uprise Africa is a member of ACfA. ACfA conducted a review of Uprise Africa’s compliance with our COGC on 13 May, following an article by Ventureburn on 8 May regarding the equity crowdfunding campaign of Intergreatme (IGM). The process included members of the board, executive management, and compliance teams of Uprise Africa. The review resulted in recommendations for Uprise Africa in the areas of risk management and communication. In all other respects, ACfA is satisfied that Uprise Africa remains compliant with our COGC.”
Uprise.Africa is an online marketing tool that creates a platform for business owners and entrepreneurs to market-test business plans and sells equity to potential investors. Uprise.Africa prides itself on its secure online platform adhering to all required regulations and compliance parameters during the investment process and the roles and responsibilities between the investors are strictly governed by contractual agreements.
In the financial world, the use of online platforms to raise funds is a relatively new and unchartered territory, which can result in potential financial risks for investors. Uprise.Africa is aware of these risks and consistently updates its processes in order to effectively report and address any potential fraudulent behaviour in the network, as well as working with partners on best practices around authentication and fraud monitoring.
The R25million that was pledged to Intergreatme, through its own acquired potential investor, is an example of how certain parties try and exploit these inherent risks within the Crowdfunding arena.
Uprise.Africa strictly adheres to the regulated steps to be followed during crowdfunding investment campaigns, which includes: (1) a pledge being received, (2) the pledgor and the funds must clear due diligence and compliance checks, which in this case was conducted by Uprise.Africa and (3) if cleared the pledgor signs a subscription agreement and only then becomes an investor, which did not take place in the case of the R25mill pledge.
The South African Government should recognize that Fintech companies can play a central
role in distributing capital to small businesses and early-stage companies.
The two sectors have the potential to reduce unemployment numbers, therefore, the greatest
need for financial access. However, a general lack of collateral among small businesses
doesn’t attract traditional banks.
In the era of online lending and equity crowdfunding platforms, we have seen an upsurge in
investment to build the software for onboarding, screening, approval, distributing, and
servicing of loans and equity investments to small businesses. Now, it’s far more secure to
use technology when interacting with audiences that need protection against fraudsters.
The regulators and policymakers need to work with fintech entrepreneurs who have the
digital infrastructure to help the Government achieve its goal of saving small businesses and
getting the economy to get back on track faster.
While South Africans applaud the Government’s work to help SMMEs cope with the
liquidity and demand crisis created by the COVID-19 pandemic, more financial support and
incentives are needed to help startup companies.
The Innovators and tech CEOs are planning layoffs in the coming weeks. They are ineligible
to receive government support under the current programs.
COVID-19 is a momentum and capacity building killer. It’s especially disheartening to the
startup community which has been scaling-up and capturing global attention, attracting
capital and talent, investing in new resources and infrastructure, and building national
confidence and pride.
For some startups, the pandemic may expedite the growth of their business but for most, it
will be a disaster. As it stands, in a few short months we are at risk of losing an entire
generation of early-stage companies who are too small to attract institutional venture capital
and whose survival cannot only depend on the pocketbooks of friends, families, and angel
The risk of losing this collective private and public investment and the cost of rebuilding (if
at all possible) would be more expensive than providing the required support to bridge
companies and the economy to better times.
From an investor perspective, the sharp falls and volatility in equity markets have resulted in
greater investor conservatism with less appetite for riskier, early-stage companies that are
best positioned to create the jobs of tomorrow. While a lot of work would have to be done to
get back to normalcy, the smoothest and cost-effective way to assist small economic players
would be through Fintechs! The same experts who have worked in bigger financial
institutions provide consultative advice to Fintechs, resulting in market confidence.
The sheer magnitude of the economic and financial crisis requires a comprehensive and
complementary suite of measures to enable smaller, earlier-stage companies not only to
survive the present situation but also to be fully equipped to move into high gear as soon as
the current global lockdown subsides.
Fintechs have frontline insights on the pain COVID-19 is inflicting on small businesses and
entrepreneurs. These Fintechs can help to distribute financial support more quickly and cost-
effectively, complementing the bigger financial intermediary players.
Inclusion of Fintechs in the distribution of financial assistance to small companies and
startups would mean more players in the finance distribution sector or the sharing of the
finance industry cake. Power control in the financial sector will cease to be in the hands of a
few established players.
Our Fintechs have digital infrastructure to identify demand, verify identity and financial
suitability, approve investments, and make efficient and secure digital payments. Fintechs can
provide a range of financial options (equity, loans, and other forms of credit) to support
consumers, startups, entrepreneurs, and SMEs.
The government should support and recognize Fintechs as a key part of the financial solution.
The sooner we understand that our regulation and policy frameworks need to holistically
include the value that new fintech models and digital infrastructure brings, the faster the
economy will get back on track. The government should lead in demonstrating the fair
distribution of wealth between established finance houses and Fintechs.
There is an immediate opportunity for the Government to partner with fintech to solve the
funding crisis that COVID-19 has forced upon all of us.
Working together, Fintechs can deliver the government’s financial resources using a resilient
and efficient electronic platform. It's time for the Government to work with Fintech
entrepreneurs and seize this opportunity to work together to protect the South African
It is strongly suggested that the government implement the following recommendations
1. Work with Fintechs to distribute and manage small business loans quickly and cost-
effectively. Online lenders can process loan applications quickly, onboarding, and evaluating
borrowers electronically, while proactively identifying risks and monitoring borrowers.
2. Establish a Capital Raise Funding Program to improve access to capital for SMME through a
Matching investment program where the Government should match investments into early-
stage and smaller companies raising capital through equity crowdfunding platforms. These
companies would not generally qualify for Bank loans due to their Financial Standing. The
rescue of these entrepreneurs and innovators is critical as we emerge from the Covid 19
3.Tax Relief for Equity crowdfunding investors similar to the EIS/SEIS programs in the UK.
Johannesburg, South Africa: Tuesday, 05 May 2020
Uprise.Africa would like to state that we are at all times a responsible and legally compliant FSC license holder in a highly regulated market sector, Uprise.Africa complied with the law and regulations governing the IGM campaign, including completing its due diligence and FICA requirements for each investor who proposed to invest in the offering.
The effectiveness of this process ensured that an investment pledge of R25 million was not accepted, due to failure to pass the due diligence process. Henceforth, the investor’s source of funds did not pass the strict compliance protocols. The investment was thus never materialised.
Uprise.Africa is strictly governed by the FSCA and POPI, it is unable to disclose any more information, except to make clear that:
Neither Uprise.Africa nor any of its officers or directors had any pre-existing relationship with the investor that signed a pledge to invest R25 million.
The investor was introduced to Uprise.Africa by IGM, as the investor had approached IGM directly.
The investor signed the investment pledge for R25 million, effectively filling the entire 20% of IGM shares on offer, in IGM’s offices, then communicated this to Uprise.Africa
On May 17, 2019, after signing the pledge, the investor provided Uprise.Africa with a proof of payment to the Uprise investment account, for R25 million. However, the funds were never received despite repeated inquiries by Uprise.Africa between the dates of May 17th to May 22nd.
During this five day period, Uprise.Africa also conducted due diligence on the investor and then proceeded to reject the investment due to it being fraudulent. At no stage did either Uprise.Africa or IGM receive any money from the investor. Neither did Uprise.Africa nor IGM benefit in any way whatsoever.
Due to the media coverage and hype created by the large sum pledged in a short time, Uprise.Africa informed all of the other potential investors who had also pledged to invest, that they were free to withdraw their pledges, just in case the other investors had invested on the basis of media coverage generated by the R25 million pledge.
• A pledge is the first step in the crowd-funding investment process.
• Thereafter the investor and the funds must clear due diligence and compliance.
• Once cleared the individual who pledged signs a subscription agreement and only then becomes an investor.
• This process takes 60 to 90 working days.
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Uprise Africa, the in-demand and innovative crowdfunding platform, is ending the year on a high after scooping yet another prestigious accolade.
The prestigious ICT Startup Award (SME Category) was received at the GovTech 2019 SITA Digital Service Awards that ran from 28 to 30 October at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli ICC Complex, Durban (KZN). This rounds-off an amazing year for the trailblazing South African company with a growing reputation across the African continent.
Conference and Awards:
Short for “government technology”, GovTech is a conference and awards event that began in 2006. The conference theme was “Digital Transformation – Gearing towards 4IR And Beyond”.
“To date, it has turned into an important feature in the government planning cycle. Fast forward into 2019, the conference continues to rally the public sector towards the need for government to adapt to, and adopt new and innovative ways of serving citizens and delivering services including the use of ICT technologies”, said Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams (Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies)
“GovTech is now a strategic platform for thought leadership in the quest by the State Information Technology Agency (SITA) in line with its legislative objective to improve service delivery by the government through the provision of ICT technologies and other systems in a secure environment.
“This year’s event takes place against the backdrop of a heightened focus on digital transformation and fourth industrial revolution hence the theme: Digital Transformation – Gearing towards 4IR And Beyond, which is a calling on all the attendants to leave no stone unturned in their quest to position the public service as the pioneers in the realization of the ideals enshrined in the National Development Plan Vision 2030 and the National ICT Policy White Paper.”
She said that both digital access, transformation, and inclusivity have been identified as three critical pillars and in consideration, the government wanted to applaud the work that men and women do under the banner of GovTech – to change mindsets, develop skills, promote innovation and transform the industry.
“Ensuring that the SMMEs and co-operatives are drawn into the digital economy remains the preoccupation of this government to realize digital inclusivity, therefore, the role extended to the small businesses to partake, benefit and grow from their association with the event has been a regular sub-theme of the conference and that is laudable,” explained the Minister.
Since Uprise Africa was formed, the Sandton City, Johannesburg based company has been the go-to platform for savvy start-ups in need of finance through crowdfunding. As well, the platform continues to provide investors on the look-out for opportunities to partake in early-stage entrepreneurial businesses.
Winning successive awards has afforded Uprise Africa the much-needed opportunity to keep trending in the South African crowdfunding space, with companies like Integreatme raising almost one and a half times than its target. Several awards were won along the way and underlining the brand’s impact on the market.
Awards are an indication of a company’s performance in its industry and its potential to build a brand’s image in the market is huge. They also are important in directing investors where to find the best start-ups to place their hard-earned cash and see it grow. In this case, the awards show that Uprise Africa is the best crowdfunding platform for entrepreneurs and therefore the best to provide investment opportunities.
Visit https://uprise.africa right now for perfect investments.