How much money the average employee earns at South African startups

Investment firm Timon Capital has released a new report looking at the average salaries at African startups.

The report is based on salary and compensation information across 50 startups in Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, and South Africa.

The research shows that Fintech was by far the most popular field (20%) among the respondents, followed by software development (7%) and logistics (6%).

Most of the startup founders indicated they have some sort of tertiary degree – with 50% indicating that they have a Bachelor’s degree or higher.

These founders are primarily between the ages of 20-39, are male, and started the company within the last three years.

54% of the surveyed companies said they have one office, while 37.5% of the surveyed companies said they have operations in more than one country.

It should be noted that most of the startups interviewed were large enough to attract attention from international investors and are established enough that they are actively seeking funding money.

This may skew the results and salaries towards the higher-end.

The data shows that across all the startups reviewed the average chief executive officer salary was $37,560 (R550,922)

By comparison, the average salary for a chief technical officer was $35,131 (R515,294) and the average chief marketing officer’s salary was $31,666 (R464,470).

South Africa

The data shows that C-level executives in South African can earn substantially more than their African counterparts, with the average chief executive officer taking home $65,714 (R963,879)


Chief executive officer salaries range between $10,000 – $125,000 (R146,678 – R1.83 million) while their total compensation ranges between $10,000 – $500,000 (R146,678 – R7.3 million).


Chief technical officer salaries range between $10,000 – $90,000 (R146,678 – R1.32 million) while their total compensation ranges between $10,000 – $500,000 (R146,678 – R7.3 million).


Chief marketing officer salaries range between $10,000 – $125,000 (R146,678 – R1.83 million) while their total compensation ranges between $10,000 – $175,000 (R146,678 – R2.56 million).


Senior engineer salaries range between $10,000 – $70,000 (R146,678 – R1.02 million) while their total compensation ranges between $10,000 – $250,000 (R146,678 – R3.66 million).


Junior engineer salaries range between $10,000 – $50,000 (R146,678 – R733,000) while their total compensation ranges between $10,000 – $250,000 (R146,678 – R3.66 million).


Junior analyst salaries range between $10,000 – $30,000 (R146,678 – R440,000) while their total compensation ranges between $10,000 – $70,000 (R146,678 – R1.02 million).


Dollar to rand conversions taken at R14.67/dollar. 


Read: 3 South African fintech startups just scored R23 million in loans – including one that invests in cows

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How much money the average employee earns at South African startups