Tag Archives: Silicon Valley
Silicon Valley: Latest News
Tom Jackson, 1:15 am AFKI Original
Some of the most prominent Silicon Valley individuals and companies are caught up in sexual harassment scandals, but their story is somewhat echoed in other parts of the world, with individuals within Kenya’s tech ecosystem also experiencing sexism and unwanted sexual advances. The poor response has raised questions about the African tech community in general’s attitude towards women in the workplace.
Staff, 11:54 am
Bridge International Academies, operates 405 schools in Kenya, educating children from preschool through eighth grade, for a fee of between $54 and $126 per year, depending on the location of the school. It was founded in 2007. From early on, the founders’ plans for the world’s poor were audacious. Bridge promised to revolutionize primary-school education. The Bridge concept has galvanized many of the Western investors and Silicon Valley moguls who learn about the project.
Staff, 9:32 am
SweepSouth is a South African start-up which allows customers to book a home cleaner online at R38 (US$2.8) per hour. The company was launched in Cape Town in June 2014 by husband-and-wife team, Aisha Pandor and Alen Ribic, and has since expanded to Johannesburg, Pretoria and Durban.
Staff, 8:11 am
Allard Luchsinger is the director for private equity at the Dutch-based venture fund, Velocity Capital Private Equity. The company specializes in fintech early-stage investments. Luchsinger shared what motivated his organization to invest in two African start-ups over the last year.
Dana Sanchez, 11:27 am
Five winning African tech startups are in Silicon Valley competing with others from around the world and hopefully attracting venture capital. A lot of them are self-taught and lack formal training in venture creation and digital entrepreneurship, an event manager said. “They have built companies on binary codes and learned new skills through the mobile internet. If a Silicon Valley technology event is live streamed across the world, there are African entrepreneurs huddled somewhere, watching it and consuming every panel, consuming every fireside chat, taking notes, and then applying those notes to their local context.”
Dana Sanchez, 12:01 am
Tanzania, Rwanda and Malawi have a permissive approach to drone regulations, helping make them attractive places for trials. Madagascar has also tested drones to reduce the time it takes to transport life-saving supplies in areas where roads are impassable or transport infrastructure is nonexistent. How useful are drones for carrying out human welfare tasks? The work is still too new and the data too thin to know. One study said humanitarian cargoes are often much heavier than a drone can handle.
Staff, 4:43 pm
Demo Africa has sent 20 African startups to Silicon Valley over the last four years. Arriving there is no guarantee of success. Twelve of the startups are still alive and breathing, four are on life support and four “are just dead and done,” said angel investor Stephen Ozoigbo. Demo Africa was launched five years ago by the U.S. State Department. It’s the African edition of a bigger group of events that include Demo U.S., Russia, Europe, Brazil and Demo China. The Demo-brand launchpad has helped big-name startups such as Adobe got exposure.
Dana Sanchez, 12:37 am
Blockchain and the ability to create transparent data transfer with distributed ledger technology is important to the United Nations Children’s Fund. The New York City-based program helps women and children in developing countries. UNICEF has a new innovation fund that uses the approach of Silicon Valley venture funds. The fund is supporting a South African startup that uses blockchain and advances in identity technology to create better management for early childhood development services.
Dana Sanchez, 3:39 pm
WhatsApp says it has no immediate plans to make money in Africa. WeChat plans to sell services in Africa. Can WeChat beat WhatsApp by doing the opposite? Facebook-owned WhatsApp offers free text messaging in Africa and promises to keep the platform ad-free. WeChat is betting on selling services in Africa as a way to loosen the Silicon Valley grip. It has a lot of experience selling services to lower income users in China. “We knew that we were late to the market so we realized that focusing on chat services was not the most practical way to get to market,” WeChat Africa head Brett Loubser says.
Staff, 9:38 am
If Africa really is to host the next Silicon Valley, it can’t just be about attracting foreign-owned companies, but capitalizing on cultures of innovation in young, domestic tech startups. In a suburb of Lagos called Yaba, the concentration of tech startups has earned yet another version of the ubiquitous moniker “Yabacon Valley”. The reason for Yaba’s ascendance as a tech enclave in Nigeria is not only to do with direct government investment in the area.
- Real Estate