From Mongolia to South Africa to London to Brazil, people around the globe are coming together for weekend long workshops to pitch ideas, form teams, and start companies. Startup Weekend is a global initiative which started in the USA and over 500 events have been held in 90 countries to date.

On August 31st Cape Town hosted the 54-hour idea fest, for the second year running. Of course Microsoft BizSpark was there in force as a platinum sponsor. This year’s event was held at Bandwidth Barn and saw 39 participants pitch 29 ideas on Friday night kick-off, which then became 9 teams.

Winners of the competition (top two teams) were offered the chance to having mentoring and support via Microsoft BizSpark and receive a scholarship to attend DEMO Africa taking place in Nairobi, Kenya in October. How exciting for them!

Read about the winning team Virtual Firehouse: “Brandon Wilson, an emergency services veteran, who has experienced the inadequacies of current solutions first hand created a system aiming to overcome the management and reporting challenges that emergency services teams face due to outdated systems”.

The second-placed entrant, WiselyDone, aims to provide an employment portal for retired individuals to leverage their experience and skills.

"The winning solution addresses a clear need in the market, and despite the impressive output and creativity displayed by all teams, the judges were pleased with their final decision” said Invenfin’s Executive Director Stuart Gast who was on the judging panel.

Here are some pictures from the event.