Kenya: Latest News
Peter Pedroncelli, 6:42 am
Malaysian subscription streaming video service iflix, which is focused on emerging markets, has secured significant funding that will be used to facilitate the company’s African expansion plans. The Netflix competitor announced that it had attracted investments amounting to $133m in new funding round led by U.S. media giant Hearst that was successful due to significant interest from both new investors and existing shareholders.
Peter Pedroncelli, 5:45 am
This week Vodacom Tanzania completed the largest initial public offering ever seen on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE) in its 19 years of existence. Vodacom raised $219 million for the listing, becoming the first to comply with new regulatory changes requiring telecoms companies in the country to list at least 25 percent on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange
Tom Jackson, 10:49 am AFKI Original
While both Kenya and Rwanda admit to the importance of tech development in spurring economic success, the countries have two different approaches. Kenya’s tech development has stalled, mostly on President Kenyatta’s watch, and the government needs to match its rhetoric with action if it is to get it going again. In contrast, Rwanda is earning a reputation as a test kitchen for startups, and a recent report placed the country first in government success in ICT promotion.
Peter Pedroncelli, 8:05 am
WorldRemit, an international digital money transfer business, and the National Bank of Kenya have joined forces to the benefit of the Kenyan people, expanding remittance options for locals and those sending money to the country. The partnership enables Kenyans living abroad to make instant transfers to Bank of Kenya accounts held in both Kenyan Shillings and U.S. Dollars.
Peter Pedroncelli, 4:38 am AFKI Original
The Barclays Accelerator Program, powered by small and medium business empowerment organization Techstars, is a startup program of networking, mentoring and development at Rise, Barclays Africa Group’s fintech innovation hub. Selected from a large group of applicants from 50 countries, Barclays will work closely with 10 chosen startups to explore promising new technology-based solutions that can benefit the financial services industry and their customers.
Peter Pedroncelli, 6:47 am
British mobile virtual network operator Lycamobile is expanding into Africa, and has chosen South Africa as their first sub-Saharan African market. As the biggest mobile virtual network operators in the world, Lycamobile’s expansion to South Africa will be their first in the region, as well as the 23rd country within their list of global markets.
Staff, 7:45 am
African space programs are nothing new. In 1964 Edward Mukuka Nkoloso, self-appointed director of Zambia’s national space program, wanted to beat the USA and the Soviet Union in the space race, and landing a Zambian on the Moon. Using unconventional techniques, such as spinning students around a tree in an oil drum, Nkoloso trained 12 astronauts. He was unsuccessful. Fortunately Africa’s space programs now look much more promising. In the last decade the continent has entered a space race.
Peter Pedroncelli, 6:06 pm AFKI Original
There are 25 African billionaires who can stake their claim among the estimated 2,043 dollar billionaires worldwide that make up the richest of the rich. A number of the African billionaires have earned some of their wealth thanks to tech and related industries, with the modern digital world contributing revenues that have helped them to grow their personal net worth to billionaire status.
Peter Pedroncelli, 6:37 pm AFKI Original
History was made in 2016 when Africa could finally celebrate its first startup unicorn, with the Africa Internet Group, now known as Jumia Group, being valued at over $1 billion in February last year. In doing so, it became the first privately owned startup to gain unicorn status, joining an elite group of 150 or so companies around the globe. The company is based in Lagos, Nigeria, and operates as a subsidiary of Millicom International Cellular S.A, using a sales approach similar to Amazon.
Tom Jackson, 6:13 am AFKI Original
While fintech solutions in other parts of the world have not produced consistent success, Africa’s lack of banking penetration has opened up possibilities for fintech startups to serve a mobile-first population. This track record of innovation is resulting in increased funding for African fintech startups, while of all the sub-sectors within Africa’s tech space it has also proven the most likely in terms of exits.
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