OLX to Sponsor the 2014 Social Media Awards

Last year, I was part the panel of judges for the inaugural Olx social media awards in Kenya. Our work was to shortlisted five out of all the the ¬†nominated persons/accounts in each of the categories, and then the public would do the final voting. This year, I am happy to announce that I will also be a judge ūüôā The list has not changed from last year. The awards culminated in a gala dinner at the Laico Regency. OLX is also the sponsor for this year’s Social Media Awards.

OLX to sponsor social media awards

OLX to sponsor social media awards


Last year, the OLX Social Media Awards had 25 categories including Social Media News Channel of the Year, Social Media Personality of the Year, Social Media Corporate Award of the Year and Social Media Innovation of the Year.  New categories will be introduced this year to make the Awards more exciting and inclusive.


For the full list of nominees and winners of the 2013 Inaugural Social Media awards, click on the link!

I will keep you updated on when the nominations are open so you can nominate your favorite social media influencers, we judges will shortlist them based on criteria that we will share with the public, and finally you will get the chance to vote for the final winner.

The awards create a platform for individuals and organizations to celebrate the contribution of social media in the social, economic and political spheres by recognizing those who have used it positively to impact lives.

BAKE Awards 2014 – The Post That is A Week Late!

The 3rd Annual Bloggers Association of Kenya (BAKE) Awards took place at the Intercontinental Hotel in Nairobi on Saturday, May 3rd.

To see  photos of the bloggers in attendance, check out this link.

Here is a full list of the winners. Check out how people voted here.

Best Technology Blog –¬†techmoran.com¬†¬†

Best Photography Blog –benkiruthi.com

Best Creative Writing Blog –¬†bikozulu.co.ke¬†¬†¬†

Best Business Blog –¬†bankelele.co.ke¬†¬†

Best Food Blog –¬†pikachakula.com¬†¬†

Best Environmental/Agricultural Blog –¬†farmingafrika.com

Best Fashion/Beauty/Hair/Style Blog –¬†thisisess.com

Best Politics Blog ¬†–¬†brainstorm.co.ke

Best New Blog –¬†wendywahito.com

Best Corporate Blog –¬†ihub.co.ke

Best Topical Blog –¬†mummytales.com

Best Sports Blog (A tie) –¬†michezoafrika.com¬†futaa.com

Best Entertainment/Lifestyle Blog Р ghafla.com

Best Travel Blog –¬†safari254.com

Best Health Blog –¬†wambuiwaithaka.com

Best County Blog –¬†county-411.com

Best Kenyan Blog of the Year –¬†bikozulu.co.ke

On the Tech Scene: Pivot East 2014 Semi-Finalists

Pivot East, an innovative startups competition geared towards nurturing the growing ICT talent in East Africa. In its 4th Edition (it has been running since 2011), below are the shortlisted candidates in the 5 categories that the competition runs in. For more, check out the Pivot East website:

1. Finance Category

Beyonic (Uganda): Aims to eliminate cash by creating the best solutions that enable  business to make payments using mobile money.

Bill-On (Kenya): Bill-on is a mobile application that enables users to pay multiple monthly bills all at the touch of a button.

ChamaSoft (Kenya): Is an investment group management platform which manages administration of chamas, allowing them to concentrate on investment rather than  administration.

Chura (Kenya): Chura connects mobile users to all networks and their services from a single SIM card.

Ensibuuko (Uganda): Leveraging mobile and web technologies to improve access to finance for small holder rural farmers.

FarmDrive (Kenya): FarmDrive connects smallholder farmers to people with disposable income that want to invest in agribusiness ventures.

Kadi (Kenya): Kadi is a mobile application that enables school going students to carry their pocket money and make purchases with the use of NFC technology.

Mchama (Kenya): Mchama is a mobile App that helps self-help groups (chamas) that do
table banking capture and keep their records timely and accurately.

Tevat ltd (Kenya): Tevat aims to give entrepreneurs a platform to leverage family, friends, chamas & existing base of fans/supporters to collectively raise capital in exchange for equity.

Valuraha ( Kenya): The Valuraha Trader is a platform that simulates the Nairobi Securities Exchange & the conventional investment instruments in Kenya

2. Enterprise Category

A SiM Mobile (Kenya) ASim Mobile is a supply chain mobile solution integrated seamlessly with most popular accounting, ERP apps in the world

Buymore (Kenya): Buymore offers student discounts that enhance user retail experience and push foot fall to merchants.

KejaHunt (Kenya): KejaHunt is an online property listing platform that helps you find a house and a roommate, and gives visibility to local businesses.

OffersAfrica.com (Kenya): Is a digital and dynamic marketing platform for businesses, which benefit from a dedicated platform to manage their marketing activities.

Online Hisab (Ethiopia): Online Hisab is a cloud-based accounting package for Ethiopian SMEs, who are looking for an affordable and easy to use accounting solution.

RTSOP (Kenya): RTSOP is an online and mobile-phone based platform that enables logistic companies which suffer empty return trips to commercialize return trips.

Sapama.com (Kenya): Sapama.com enables property agents to list and manage properties details such as tenants, landlords, tenancy, rent and utilities details.

Sootano (Kenya): Sootano provides a platform for Businesses and Freelancers to connect. It facilitates finding and contracting reliable service providers for jobs or projects

Sages Asset King (Kenya): Sages Asset King is a mobile app letting you do an efficient and paperless asset audit of tagged business assets via smartphone.

ThinVoid (Uganda): ThinVoid implements solutions & strategy that accelerate data collection.

3. Entertainment

Endiba (Uganda): Endiba provides the best in all local sport for every soccer lover. They provide you with league information such as league table, results, news and player profile

Epic (Kenya): Epic provides a three prong approach to moving the Media houses from in-effective shoot-and-miss online content delivery, to a structured measurable, cost-effective way of creating profitable digital content.

FunKe Science (Kenya): FunKe Science is a learning platform that seeks to teach science in a way that is both exciting and easy.

Jifunza (Rwanda): Jifunza builds digital experiences and games to expose the beauty, diversity and culture of Africa to the world to change negative stereotypes about the continent.

MapJam (Kenya): MapJam helps internet users find things & events with a dedicated search platform.

Muva Studios (Kenya): Muva Studios develops small engaging games for low-end devices and high end devices to cover the larger market.

Momentum Core (Kenya): Momentum Core develops simulation and entertainment games for the growing need by the environment around the globe.

Safari Tales (Kenya): Safari Tales is an edutainment android mobile application for children to access Digital African Narratives & learn African Languages.

Throughpass (Kenya): Throughpass is a soccer networking platform that empowers aspiring professional footballers to connect with coaches, agents/scouts and fans from around the world.

UbongoKids (Tanzania): Ubongo Kids is a multiplatform, interactive edu-cartoon with SMS interaction broadcasting on TV to kids in Tanzania & online for kids around the world.

4. Utilities Category

Askari (Uganda): ASKARI is a mobile/web/SMS platform that crowd-sources for crime data and provides users with information on security, updates on crime reports, dangerous crime zones and location of police stations.

CladLight (Kenya): CladLight presents a solution to motorcycle accidents using the Smart Jacket – a reflective jacket fitted with bright indicator lights.

Gari Sms (Kenya): GARI SMS links car buyer and seller using SMS. The seller registers the car details (including price) via SMS then puts a ‘GARI SMS sticker’ on the car. When the buyer spots the sticker, he knows the car is on sale. The prospective buyer then queries
the car details by sending the car’s registration number to an SMS shortcode which then sends the details as per the seller’s description.

Maramoja Transport (Kenya): Maramoja is Kenyan social enterprise dedicated to providing easy access to safe, reliable transport services through your mobile device.

Mafundi (Kenya): Mafundi is a web and mobile startup that connects home and office owners with broken items to the best technicians around to repair their items by selecting the best rated in their area then contacting them to fix their items.

Matserve Msafiri (Kenya): Matserve Msafiri is a road safety android app integrated with a web app to solve the challenges faced by stakeholders in the transport industry. The app facilitates reports on road menaces to mitigate against accidents caused by avoidable
human errors & impunity.

Mavazi (Kenya): Mavazi is an application that provides an easy way for users to digitally organize their closet and plan what to wear by cataloging and selecting from their items. They also get to share the styles they’ve put together with their friends and hear from

ParcelSolution (Kenya): is a mobile based parcel notification solution that helps courier companies alert customers about the status of their parcels, when the parcels are on the way and when the parcels are available for collection.

Sendy (Kenya): Sendy is a platform for on-demand errands. With the tap of a button, you instantly connect senders and riders and pay via your mobile phone .

Shulewiki (Tanzania): Is a one stop school directory that helps education scholars to find the best school, view performance trends and get in touch with all schools. ShuleWiki gives you all the information on schools in Tanzania.

5. Society Category

Andrush Systems (Uganda): Findit is a communication tool that lets organizations reach their target community with pertinent, actionable and relevant information. In every case,Findit puts local-language SMS, voice messaging and other telecoms technology in the
hands of project managers and field leaders to efficiently send community members information that interests them.

AgrInfo (Tanzania): AgrInfo is mobile and web portal addressing the challenge of land ownership verification, solves land conflicts between villagers and investors using GIS by mapping the plots and using mobile GPS for surveying locations.

Benchcare (Kenya): Benchcare is a cloud based application modeled towards easing physician’s workflow. The software focuses on efficient administration and operation of small practices predominantly with the aim of maximizing productivity.

Moquestions (Uganda): Moquestion is an online question bank with a purpose of connecting learning institutions with people around the world.

mWakili (Kenya): mWakili is aimed at solving the problems which many Kenyans experience concerning Legal affairs. It helps the user to locate a law firm of his/herchoice and enables him/her to enquire about a particular case directly to the law firm. It also gives the users basic legal steps to follow when carrying out an activity e.g registering a company.

SokoText (Kenya): SokoText uses SMS based pre-ordering service to make it easier for small fruit and vegetable sellers in slums to get their daily stock. SokoText is a social enterprise based in Mathare slum in Nairobi.

Somo (Kenya): SOMO is an SMS service that delivers daily bible readings to members of the Catholic faith upon subscription.

SokoNect (Kenya): SokoNect uses mobile technology and the Kenyan County govt to reduce farmers post harvest losses and maximize profits by eliminating Brokers. SokoNect enables farmers to upload information about availability of their produce for
sale enabling buyers to prepare enough package materials.

TotoHealth (Kenya): TotoHealth enables hospitals and organizations to communicate and provide targeted information on antenatal & postnatal care using low-cost phones.

Zapmedic by Bitways Limited (Uganda): Zapmedia is an online medical appointment scheduling service with a primary goal of improving access to health care by helping patients find healthcare practitioners online in an easy and convenient way.

Vote Now for Your Favorite Kenyan Blog!

The Bloggers Association of Kenya (BAKE) has today unveiled the nominees for the 2014 BAKE Kenyan Blog Awards. The Awards reward bloggers that post on a regular basis, have great and useful content presented in a creative and innovative format.
The nominees were selected by a panel of judges comprising of bloggers and media personalities.

The release of the nominees list begins the voting phase of the awards.


Voting will run from 3rd March 2014 and end on April 30th 2014. You can vote for your favourite blogs through www.blogawards.co.ke/vote

Here is a list of the nominees in the various categories.

Best Technology Blog
1. http://www.moseskemibaro.com/
3. http://techtrendske.wordpress.com/
4. http://techmoran.com/
5. http://www.kvrop.com/

Best Photography Blog
1. http://stevekitots.wordpress.com/
2. http://benkiruthi.com/
3. http://mutuamatheka.co.ke/blog/
4. http://allangichigi.com/star/
5. http://www.gallerymichaelkhateli.blogspot.com

Best Creative Writing Blog
1. http://www.bikozulu.co.ke
2. http://www.mydeardoris.wordress.com
3. http://mkatenusu.wordpress.com/
4. http://www.donotfeedthebloggers.com
5. http://michaelngigi.wordpress.com

Best Business Blog
1. http://www.bankelele.co.ke/
2. http://sokodirectory.com/
3. http://www.kenyamanual.co.ke/
4. http://simplytakeaction.com/business/
5. http://inspiringgreatness001.wordpress.com

Best Food Blog
1. http://leotunapika.wordpress.com
2. http://healthylivingkenya.wordpress.com
3. http://happymealskenya.blogspot.com/
4. http://www.pikachakula.com
5. http://www.yummy.co.ke/

Best Environmental/Agricultural Blog
1. http://emmiekio.blogspot.com
2. http://rockesci.co.ke
3. http://www.panaac.org/blog
4. http://youngagrochampions.blogspot.com
5. http://www.farmingafrika.com

Best Fashion/Beauty/Hair/Style Blog
1. http://www.thisisess.com
2. http://www.kurlykichana.com
3. http://luciamusau.com/
4. http://www.ourstylekenya.com
5. http://nanciemwai.com/

Best Politics Blog
1. http://www.anjeru.com
2. http://kenopalo.com/
3. http://www.brainstorm.co.ke/
4. http://www.shitemi.com

Best New Blog
1. http://confessionsofayoungmummy.wordpress.com
2. http://www.magunga.com
3. http://www.tdsblog.com
4. http://kenyansnapshot.wordpress.com
5. http://www.wendywahito.com

Best Corporate Blog
1. http://crownpaints.co.ke/blog
2. http://www.olivia.co.ke/blog
3. http://storymojaafrica.wordpress.com
4. http://www.ihub.co.ke/blog
5. http://blog.batakenya.com

Best Topical Blog
1. http://www.mummytales.com
2. http://blog.inkedbiker.co.ke
3. http://blog.gigwapi.com
4. http://www.lizlenjo.com
5. http://datascience.co.ke

Best Sports Blog
1. http://futbolchiqa.wordpress.com
2. http://www.michezoafrika.com
3. http://www.superfoota.co.ke
4. http://www.ilfabiano.wordpress.com
5. http://www.futaa.com

Best Entertainment/Lifestyle Blog
1. http://www.ghafla.com
2. http://www.niaje.com
3. http://www.afritorial.com
4. http://owaahh.wordpress.com
5. http://actors.co.ke

Best Travel Blog
1. http://www.kenyatalii.com
2. http://www.safari254.com
3. http://www.hazelvint.com
4. http://ecotourismdemystified.com

Best Health Blog
1. http://fitnessmovementke.tumblr.com
2. http://wambuiwaithaka.com
3. http://strengtheninghealthsystems.wordpress.com
4. http://sitawa.blogspot.com

Best County Blog
1. http://uasingishudecides.wordpress.com
2. http://www.nairobicityguide.net
3. http://county-411.com/baringonews
4. http://www.mombasahub.net
5. http://www.amazingkisumu.co.ke/blogs

Best Kenyan Blog
1. http://mutuamatheka.co.ke/blog
2. http://mydeardoris.wordpress.com
3. http://bikozulu.co.ke
4. http://pikachakula.com
5. http://nanciemwai.com


The Mobile East Africa is a conference that brings together stakeholders in the mobile industry in Kenya (telecommunication companies, information technology companies, entrepreneurs in the tech space etc) for a wholesome discussion on the current trends, the past and the future of the mobile space. Formerly, this conference was known as Mobile Web East Africa and is in its 3rd year running.

Mobile East Africa 2014 is taking place at the Southern Sun Mayfair Nairobi, Kenya on February 12th through 14th. The event will kick off with a ‚ÄėLeaders of Mobile‚Äė keynote session featuring executives from IBM, SAP, Airtel and Safaricom. Former Permanent Secretary of Information and Communication Dr. Bitange Ndemo will also be joining the panel, which will analyse the future progress of the mobile ecosystem in East Africa.

World-renowned mobile expert¬†Tomi Ahonen¬†has been confirmed to deliver a special address during the Mobile East Africa 2014 main conference on 12th & 13th February, as well as a dedicated full-day workshop on Friday, February 14th. Forbes ranked him as ‚Äúthe world‚Äôs most influential expert in mobile‚ÄĚ in 2012; Mr. Ahonen has spoken at more than 300 conferences in over 60 countries and his cumulative audience totals over 100,000 people. He is the author of 12 bestselling books on mobile and digital communities and consults to Fortune 500 companies around the globe, helping to define their mobile strategies.

The other speakers at the conference include Jumia Kenya, iHub, Virtual City, Bongo Live, Ghafla!, Smile Tanzania, Bozza, Every1Mobile, FrontlineSMS, Praekelt, Sponge, KINU Innovation Hub and Zilojo. Microsoft, Coca-Cola, Omidyar Network, MTech, and Google are just a few of the many companies sending representatives to the event.

You can register for the conference here.

The She.Business Awards by The Purple Network

I received an email about the She.Business Awards by The Purple Network, and my first question was, who is the Purple Network?

The Purple Network designs and implements economic empowerment projects for women and youth in enterprise. We achieve this by partnering with local and international donor agencies, the private sector and government agencies in East Africa.The Purple Network was registered in 2012 and believes that enterprise development is crucial to job and wealth creation in Africa.

The Purple Network was co-founded by two women:¬†Nyambia Gatahi ‚Äď Beatriceand¬†Joan Nasimiyu Orina.

The Purple Network recently launched the She.Business Awards to recognize enterprising women who are doing business in Kenya. This is the only word focused on women entrepreneurs running their business in various categories, among them ICT and Agriculture.

The competition is open to women who have been running their businesses for a minimum of one year and have at least three employees. The most enterprising women will benefit from publicity, access to market linkages through the conference and will be supported to grow their businesses for a period of one year. The award will be rolled out in three phases; nomination, selection process and grand finale, which will include the women in enterprise conference and an award ceremony.

The nomination process is now open so you are free to nominate women who are running their businesses successfully, women with inspiring stories that can encourage other women to realize that success in business is achievable.

Image from tech.co

Image from tech.co


The She.Business Awards are supported by Nailab, Gennessis Consult, Consumer Pro, Open, World, Fine Print and Business Mind Magazine.

For more information, contact Joan on awards@purplenetwork.co.ke , call +254 705 702080 or tweet @SheBizAward

WordCamp Kenya is in November at Nanyuki

WordCamp Kenya is a conference about the world’s most popular blogging and CMS software, WordPress. Developers, designers and bloggers will come together for WordPress related talks, workshops and networking.

WordCamp Kenya 2013

WordCamp Kenya 2013

The third annual event will take place on November 9 and 10th 2013 in Nanyuki at the foot of Mt. Kenya.

Get your early bird ticket now for Ksh. 3,500. The ticket includes transport (to and from Nanyuki to Nairobi), Camping, Meals for 2 days and ticket to WordCamp Kenya 2013. Also comes with a WordCamp tee and sponsor giveaways.

Click here for the list of speakers at the two-day conference.

BarCamp Nairobi 2013 is almost here!

BarCamp is an international network of user-generated unconferences primarily focused around technology and the Web. By definition, an unconference is a participant-driven meeting that tries to avoid one or more aspects of a conventional conference, such as high fees, sponsored presentations, and top-down organization.

Barcamp Nairobi 2013

Barcamp Nairobi 2013

BarCamps are open, participatory workshop-events, the content of which is provided by participants. The first BarCamps focused on early-stage web applications, and were related to open source technologies, social software, and open data formats.

BarCamp Nairobi 2013 will be held on the 24th of August 2013 between 8.00 am and 6.00 pm collectively at the iHub, NaiLab and mLab located at the Bishop Magua Centre off Ngong Road, Opposite Uchucmi Hyper. The theme for BarCamp Nairobi 2013 is ‚ÄėThe Next 50‚Äô. Barcamp Nairobi aims to get the conversation going on where tech in Kenya will be in the next 50 years.

As Kenya celebrates 50 years of independence this year, we have the unique and enviable opportunity to dream and contemplate what the next 50 years should look like and what role technology will play. As thinkers, technologists in various sectors, and citizens of Kenya we can begin the process of visualizing the future and shaping it.

Challenges such as access to healthcare, quality and equitable education, food security have their answers in technology and the possibilities are endless. There will come a time in the next 50 years when these issues will be non-issues so to speak. What will that future look like? What technologies will be pervasive? How will people interact and how will lives be affected and improved?

BarCamp Nairobi 2013 is 100% free to attend provided you register in good time either via the web site at www.barcamp.co.ke or on EventBrite

Update: the event registration is full; sold out ūüôĀ However you can follow the conversation on twitter #barcampNBI.

The Social Media Awards Gala

The inaugural social media awards was a success, I can proudly report. While I was not an organizer, I was one of the judges who had to narrow down the nominees in each category to 5; and then the public voted for the winners.

The gala dinner was held at Laico Regency on Friday 9th August and when we walked in, the set up was perfect. The lighting was good, the decor added the touch of glamour. Heineken, the official drinks sponsor, was all out with free beer for everybody. No, I haven’t resumed drinking so no matter how tempting free beer is, I turned it down in favour of various fruit juices.

The beer :)

The beer ūüôā

The buffet dinner soon kicked off with starter soup, a reasonable variety of main dishes, and dessert on offer. The DJ played the music while we settled in with our meals, and the MC did such a great job that although the event started an hour later than scheduled, it ended on time.

Our laden dinner table

Our laden dinner table

There was entertainment by the likes of Chipukeezy (on Churchill Show) and those two clowns who sing by melting one song into the other.

The awards got underway, and in the corporate category, Safaricom outshone them all. As far as social media strategy is concerned really, Safaricom is setting the pace. Other winners included NTv, Homerun on Easy FM, and Pulse in the digital channels, radio channel and print magazine categories respectively. In the personality category, Julie Gichuru (check out the website, designed by my friend @murayakamau and some help from me) won the media personality award, among other winners. Check out the full list of nominees and winners.

The social media awards recognized and celebrated trendsetters in the social media space who offer a positive influence to Kenyans (individuals and corporates) online. I am already looking forward to next year’s event, which can only be bigger and better.

Yours truly presenting the award to Collins Nabiswa of NTv for digital channel of the year

Yours truly presenting the award to Collins Nabiswa of NTv for digital channel of the year

For the rest of the photos of the evening from Niaje, please check out their facebook album.

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Safaricom Apps Development Challenge

Safaricom Limited has launched the Safaricom Appwiz Challenge, targeting new mobile application developers in Kenya. The aim is to equip the participants with entrepreneurial and technological skills, as part of the ongoing commitment by the organization to help nurture a profitable local apps industry.

This challenge is focusing on the following categories:

  1. Agriculture
  2. Health Financial Inclusion
  3. Education Entertainment
  4. Games and Media
  5. Utilities
  6. Transport and Infrastructure
  7. Public Safety and Security

What’s interesting about this challenge is that there will be an incubation period after the submission, where the challengers will be equipped with entrepreneurial skills.

Important Dates:

Launch: 09/05/2013
Submission Closure: 28/06/2013
Hack-a-thon: 27th to 28th July 2013
Incubation Start Date: 12/08/2013
Incubation Ends: 25/10/2013
Final Event- Award Ceremony: 01/11/2013

The grand prize winner will walk away with Ksh 1,500,000 with the runner up taking Ksh 1,000,000. Category winners will take Ksh 200,000 each.

Check it out and Register today!

If you need any clarification Please contact the AppWiz team via innovation@safaricom.co.ke