Wednesday, October 20

East Africa

Ridelink raises $150k pre-seed to build e-logistics technology for East Africa
Africa, Africans in Tech, East Africa, Start-ups

Ridelink raises $150k pre-seed to build e-logistics technology for East Africa

Ridelink, an Ugandan e-logistics platform, has just closed a $150k pre-seed investment round to improve its technology and double down on its marketing efforts. The investment was birthed from the startup’s  partnership with Ortus Africa Capital, Omidyar Network and African Leadership Academy’s Young Entrepreneurs Fund(Anzisha).  This round brings Ridelink’s total fund raised to US$250k, having previously received funding from seedstars last year.  Founded in 2017 by Daniel Mukisa, Ridelink operates an e-logistics platform developed to seamlessly connect SMEs to a network of transport operators. Uganda’s population grew by 6.8% from over 44 million in 2019 to over 47 million in 2021; this population uptrend has also led to the rise of SMEs across the c...
Empowering young Africa girls through technology
East Africa, Education

Empowering young Africa girls through technology

The aim is to bridge the 23% digital divide between men and women on the continent ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, August 19, 2021/APO Group/ --  African girl coders are taking the lead in ensuring gender equity and balance in technology on the continent, a field majorly dominated by their male counterparts. Through Connected African Girls Coding Camp initiative, a joint programme of the UN Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) in collaboration with UN Women and the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), young girls are applying their coding skills that include Animation, Gaming, Turtles stitch, artificial intelligence, robotics and internet of things they acquire through the program training.  The initiative has held training camps for African girls from across the cont...
WhatsApp and other social media platforms restricted in Zambia amidst ongoing elections
East Africa, Social Networks, Telecommunications

WhatsApp and other social media platforms restricted in Zambia amidst ongoing elections

Several users from Zambia have taken to Twitter informing the general public that WhatsApp has been restricted in the country amidst ongoing general elections today. The president and parliamentary elections culminate in a face-off between current President Edgar Lungu and opposition Hakainde Hichilema. Internet monitoring organization Netblocks further corroborated these reports, adding that multiple internet providers in Zambia had restricted access to the American social messaging platform. Some of these networks include Zambian government-owned Zamtel, Airtel Zambia, Liquid Telecom and MTN. Continue reading (Image Credits: Unsplash)
Union54, A Zambian Startup, Is Developing Africa’s First Card-Issuing API
East Africa, Start-ups

Union54, A Zambian Startup, Is Developing Africa’s First Card-Issuing API

Zambian startup Union54, which specializes in fintech, has announced that it’s developing Africa’s first card-issuing API. According to TechCrunch, the company founded by Perseus Mlambo and Alessandra Martini claims to be Africa’s first card-issuing API — and while, technically, they’re correct, they initially thought of the idea when they were part of Zazu, their previous startup. Back then, Zazu — which was launched in 2015 — was considered a “challenger bank,” and had to rely on outside vendors to issue debit cards to customers. According to Mlambo, some customers waited as long as 18 months to get a debit card issued in their name. “We just realized that either the processor or the bank was not necessarily well equipped to be able to answer our q...
Survey of Kenyans shows digital devices and services are improving their lives and livelihoods – Highlights Opportunities for Deeper Participation in the Digital Economy
East Africa

Survey of Kenyans shows digital devices and services are improving their lives and livelihoods – Highlights Opportunities for Deeper Participation in the Digital Economy

The survey highlights uptake in areas beyond mobile money including usage of digital services for supporting livelihoods, e-commerce and e-governance NAIROBI, Kenya, August 10, 2021/APO Group/ --  Digital devices and services have improved the daily lives of 84% of Kenyans – while nearly one third said that it had boosted their incomes. These are among the key findings of a unique cross-country survey that provides a comprehensive and timely assessment of how Kenya’s aggressive investments in core digital infrastructure are having an impact at the level of individual Kenyans. “With Kenya now embracing its digital economy as the foundation for creating an empowered society, it’s critical to capture how that is currently playing out in the everyday digital experience of K...
Kenya to be Part of Microsoft Cloud Accelerator Program for Women-led Startups
East Africa

Kenya to be Part of Microsoft Cloud Accelerator Program for Women-led Startups

Kenya will be one of the nine countries that will benefit from Microsoft’s Cloud Accelerator Program that entails a 6-month training designed to help women-led companies start and build their business through Microsoft products and its cloud distribution channel. The program, which is currently running in the U.S., will be introduced in Kenya, South Africa, Canada, France, Germany, India, the UAE and the U.K. in partnership with IdeaGen and Women in Cloud. Generally speaking, the project is geared toward offering access to the cloud, mentorship, networking communities, and resources to women-owned tech firms. The program, which was founded two years ago, was launched to pursue a community-led initiative to empower women in tech and drive growth. Microsoft says the project has since bec...
Kenyan Government Website Hacked
Cybersecurity, East Africa

Kenyan Government Website Hacked

A group of hackers known as the Kurd Electronic Team defaced Kenya's government related websites earlier on 1 June 2019. At the time of publishing some of the websites, like that of the National Youth Service, had been restored while others were still displaying the hacking group's message stating that they were responsible for the defacement. In some cases, Kenya's ICT Authority seemed to have regained control and put up a message that they are under maintenance. "Sorry for the inconvenience but we're performing some maintenance at the moment. If you need to you can always contact us. Otherwise we'll be back online shortly! - GoK Cyber Security Team" Hacktivisim or just mischief? So far, it is not clear what was the motive for the defacements. However...
Kenya Parliament Approves Progressive Draft Data Protection Policy and Bill
East Africa, Tech Policy

Kenya Parliament Approves Progressive Draft Data Protection Policy and Bill

Amidst the hue and cry from Kenyans who have since faulted the Government’s plan to create a universal database for citizens under the NIIMs program that is popularly known as Huduma Namba, the State through its Twitter handle @StateHouseKenya revealed that Parliament had approved a progressive draft Data Protection Policy and Bill. The announcement was made by President Kenyatta. I assure Kenyans and all people residing in our beautiful country that we are taking additional measures to ensure the information they give is safe. Yesterday, the Cabinet approved a progressive draft Data Protection Policy and Bill ~President Uhuru Kenyatta | #HappyEaster— State House Kenya (@StateHouseKenya) April 19, 2019 The declaration was necessary because the Huduma Namba registration exercise had ...
“Born to Code”: Rwanda launches first coding academy
East Africa

“Born to Code”: Rwanda launches first coding academy

Rwanda has embraced technology and is now preparing its young population for the future by launching a coding academy. The school's motto "born to code" encourages young people interested in coding to pursue it as a career. The academy focusses on cyber security and software programming, and 30 girls and 30 boys enrolled in the first intake. The Rwandan government and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) recently launched the Rwanda Coding Academy in partnership with the Ministry of ICT, Ministry of Education and Rwanda Polytechnic among other institutions. The Rwanda Coding Academy, which opened on the 4th of February 2019 with a total of 60 students; 30 girls and 30 boys. A statement from the Ministry of Education said, “This model school will graduate its studen...
Siemens and Ethiopia collaborate to address urgent energy and infrastructure challenges
East Africa

Siemens and Ethiopia collaborate to address urgent energy and infrastructure challenges

Siemens is currently helping to increase the reliability of energy supply through an interconnector being built between Kenya and Ethiopia Siemens today announced it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia to support the government’s objective of becoming a low middle-income country by 2025. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) addresses the country’s energy and infrastructure sectors. Other key aspects of the agreement include financing concepts that will ensure the long-term sustainability of these infrastructure initiatives; and creating opportunities for local upskilling and job creation during construction and operation. Siemens can make a significant contribution to Ethiopia’s development Ethiopia’s Growth and T...