SA edtech startup Syafunda has received a R2.5-million($142K) investment from Edge Growth which will allow the startup to scale its platform to meet the growing need amid the coronavirus pandemic for online learning in South Africa.
Syafunda, which was founded in 2013 by Zakheni Ngubo, is an educational platform that provides access to digital content through mobile technology.
The startup partners with local content developers and publishers, setting up digital libraries in places like township and rural schools where connectivity is limited or non-existent.
Syafunda partners helps set up digital libraries in places like township and rural schools. The digital libraries have five terabytes of pre-loaded content and emit Wi-Fi hotspots so anyone in the vicinity with a mobile device can access and download the material without having to pay for internet.
The cost of the infrastructure is covered by either schools themselves or by corporates that sponsor schools through corporate social investment (CSI) programmes.
Zakheni said the R2.5-million funding from Edge Growth will go to cover the development of the startup’s new online bookstore, which will allow students to rent digital copies of textbooks.
He said the startup is currently working with 76 schools, 67 of which are in KwaZulu-Natal and nine of which are in Gauteng.