Johannesburg-headquartered ed tech start-up WeThinkCode has secured a 9.2 million rand ($442,000) investment from E Squared Investments to implement a new campus in KwaZulu-Natal, Ventureburn has reported.

The company is a software programming training academy, teaching most of its lessons online, with students required to complete two internships during the two-year course which must be undertaken near the students’ homes.

WeThinkCode stated the new investment will be paid out over three years and used to equip the new building, pay for staff, and establish a new curriculum.

Since founding in 2015 WeThinkCode has raised 60 million rand, according to Crunchbase.

E Squared’s head of social entrepreneurship Cheryl Jacob said: “As an impact investor whose mandate is to attack poverty and unemployment in South Africa, there are strong synergies between WeThinkCode’s involvement in assisting disadvantaged young people and E Squared’s social entrepreneurship initiative.

Nyari Samushonga, chief executive of WeThinkCode, added: “We know that South Africa has a vast pool of untapped talent with the aptitude to be trained in technology. At the same time, our youth unemployment is among the highest in the world. Like any successful business, WeThinkCode is evolving and continually improving its operating model and this includes making our programmes accessible to more people. Geography plays an important role here as many candidates are unable to access our existing campuses. Hence our decision to open in Durban, South Africa’s third-biggest metropole.

“The academy is open for everyone. Specifically, we aim to increase the number of women programmers on our course each year. Our target is for women to exceed 40% of our 600-strong student contingent.

“Finding candidates with the best aptitudes and attitudes is crucial and we are using a newly-developed approach to identify talent and uncover the required cognitive skills. In addition, we draw on the expertise of leading technologists for the design of our course material. These experts are continually updating the course as technologies change.”

Date published: 3 March 2021

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