Search for the onematchstick Start up Entrepreneur

-UPDATE 9 April 2024-
So the original process to find the onematchstick startup entrepreneur didn’t quite work like we had hoped. With only one application received by the closing date of 5 April, we are extending applications and changing the process. See this page here for the way forward.


We need to find the entrepreneur who will get to have the onematchstick office! Here is how we will find that lucky startup! To apply, you need to meet the criteria and follow the process outlined below:

We are looking for a start-up, or very early stages start-up entrepreneur, who needs access to office facilities in order to get their business off the ground.

The ‘onematchstick Office’ is at the Raizcorp facilities in Johannesburg, and for six months the entrepreneur will have:

  • Hot desking facilities
  • Access to board rooms and meeting rooms
  • Shared kitchen
  • Receptionist for welcoming guests
  • Access to printing and wifi facilities, (costs not included in the onematchstick deal)
  • Tea, coffee and popcorn!


You need to meet the following criteria:

  • Be a startup – so your business has not started or you are in your first three years of starting your business.
  • Be full time, and committed to getting your business off the ground.
  • Have a need for access to office space in Johannesburg, in order to start, run or expand your business.
  • Be willing to participate in the selection process, which includes social media, interviews, and if you make the top 5, be available to attend the final event and be willing to undergo a criminal/fraud record check.


STAGE 1 -starts Friday 1 March 2024

  1. Create a 2 minute video and post on your social media of choice, and tag Telana Simpson, and use the hashtags #riskandrise and #onematchstick.
    Here are Telana’s Social Media Tags for you to tag her, so that she can find your application:
    * Facebook
    * Instagram
    * TikTok
    * LinkedIn
    * X / Twitter
  2. The 2 minute video must introduce yourself and your startup, and tell us why you need the office space and what you will do with it, and how it will help your startup.
  3. We will endeavour to list all the entries received on the website.
  4. Closing date for entries are Friday 5 April 2024 midnight. EXTENDED TO 3 MAY 2024 – see this page.


  1. The Judges will choose the Top 10, who will undergo a criminal/fraud record check to make sure they meet the criteria.
  2. They will then be interviewed on the Risk & Rise podcast, and announced and listed by Monday 15 April 2024 on website and Risk & Rise YouTube channel.
  3. From Monday 15 April 2024 the public will get to vote on who they think deserves the 6 months office space at Raizcorp, by liking the videos. 
  4. Closing date for votes from the public will be Tuesday 30 April 2024.


  1. The judges will then take this Public Vote into account, and select and announce the Top 5 by Friday 3 May 2024.
  2. The Top 5 will be invited to the onematchstick Office Warming Party, where they will have a minute to pitch one last time, and the judges will then decide and announce the winner.
  3. The date of the onematchstick Office Warming party will be Friday 10 May 2024 15h00.


The judges are:

Telana Simpson – Courage Coach & ‘Matchstick Girl

Telana Simpson

Telana, a Courage Coach, podcast hose and author with expertise in psychology, retail, and e-commerce, empowers individuals to communicate authentically and fearlessly, fostering confidence and overcoming self-consciousness. Her captivating talks on radio, TV, podcasts, and stages inspire action and self-discovery, while her innovative ventures, like transforming a matchstick into office space for start-ups, reflect her boundless belief in possibilities.  She is the host of a new inspiring podcast “Risk & Rise” encouraging South Africa to overcome the fear of failure.

Allon Raiz – Founder and CEO of Raizcorp

Allon Raiz, a renowned figure in business incubation, is the CEO of Raizcorp, Africa’s sole genuine incubator supporting over 500 businesses. Author of two best-selling entrepreneurial books, host of The Big Small Business Show, and a columnist for Entrepreneur Magazine, Allon is a co-founder of Entrepreneurs’ Organisation South Africa. Recognized as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, he has spoken at prestigious events like the WEF Annual Meeting and the Global Entrepreneurship Summit, showcasing his expertise in fostering entrepreneurship globally.

Mongezi Mtati – Host of the Lead Creative

Digital and marketing strategist, Mongezi Mtati has a keen interest – bordering on obsession – in what makes compelling brand content. He is constantly in search of the human insight that leads to these successes and engages with some of the minds that bring and the magic together.  Mongezi is a brand strategist at the award-winning digital agency, Rogerwilco.  As a keynote speaker and strategist, he shares some of his findings on The Lead Creative and other platforms.

For more information:

Telana Simpson