After the recent attack at the university in Garissa, there was an outpouring of emotion and showcases of solidarity online from different parts of the world. Some asked questions, others vented while others looked at how best to prevent something similar from happening. A team based out of the Nailab looked at the possibility of creating a new source of data that would increase our collective intelligence and possibly preempt or even prevent the occurrence of crime in all its forms. The choice of social media to refine the idea and run focus groups was right on the mark, with many jumping onboard to be beta testers. Afew days into the exercise, a group of developers came out of the woodwork to claim that their concept had been “stolen”, down to the name, seemingly wanting to stake a claim to the growing interest that this project had garnered. Continue reading There’s nothing new under the sun
The world of technology entrepreneurship can be a daunting one. Things change quickly; from peculiar consumer habits, new channels of engagement, regulation via legislation, market readiness and even investor appetite. However, the one thing that remains top of my list is timing. Getting into the market in an almost perfect environment or adapting oneself appropriately, should be the goal of every technology entrepreneur. There are those who subscribe to the school of thought that says, start where you are, with what you have got and get to market as fast as possible. In my opinion that line of thinking could fast track the entry of any technology based enterprise into the dead pool; unless of course one is looking at building a simple lifestyle business whose barriers to entry would be low and competitive advantage almost non-existent. Continue reading Timing is everything whether launching, raising capital or pivoting
Ever since Alexander Graham Bell made that first call from his now famous invention, the telephone and its iterated version – the mobile phone have forever changed the world. I can attribute the term “global village” to the fact that the mobile phone has made it possible to reach and interact with anyone with a signal across the globe. The pivotal place that the traditional telco had, has seen many of them grow and rank as some of the largest companies in the regions they operate, based on revenues and market capitalization, making them an investor magnet. Telcos have been able to set their price and have the market make do with it due to lack of options. Continue reading How the internet changed and continues to change telecommunications
Running an enterprise can get very taxing, having to deal daily with a myriad of issues across different business functions from sales, marketing, customer service and even product development. To maintain my sanity I have over the years tried and tested a number of tools that allow my team and I to keep on top of things and not get overwhelmed by the day to day. While not representing the full repertoire of the tools that power my ways of work, I trust that this curated list will help you work smarter. Continue reading Working smart: tools for the busy executive
Mention the term startup and your audience will probably be shepherded into a mental frame of mind that has visions of garages or hubs filled with recent graduates or better still dropouts hacking and building services that they hope will be their pass to the cover of their local edition of Forbes or at the very least a featured post in a leading technology blog. You cannot blame one for taking a default line of thought fueled by a global buzz. Continue reading Retaining the startup mindset
Technology is an enabler, meaning it has a place in every industry; the horizontal, the vertical and even the niche. This means that the opportunities are endless for those who wish to build technology based enterprises. We now have a big push from the government coming off a successful National Innovations Forum where His Excellency the President committed Kenya shillings one billion; 500 million apiece from Cabinet Secretaries Anne Waiguru – Ministry of Devolution and Planning and Fred Matiangi’s – Ministry of Information, Communications and Technology dockets toward the realization of the Enterprise Kenya vehicle dubbed the home of African innovation.
While it is indeed easier to start up a technology business in Kenya today than it was a decade ago, it is not easier to survive, and I would argue that the mortality rate is much higher only that there are more businesses birthed. Continue reading Eventual realizations running a technology based company