Thursday, 16 February 2017
Two Years After Shutting Down Its Accelerator Program, 88mph Has Invested In Ahoy, A Travel Solution For Teams
Investment company 88mph announced in June 2015 that they would stop their accelerator and investment programs, having fully invested their funds in 36 companies in Kenya and South Africa over a five-year period. There was a caveat included in the statement – 88mph was still committed to investing in technology, and they "felt that they could grow and prosper in Africa". Since that announcement, it appears that the company is taking another dip in the startup investment pool, announcing an investment in Ahoy, a travel business that, in their own words, helps expansion teams, small businesses, and frequent travellers book and manage their flights. Ahoy was started by 88mph’s former Program Managers shortly after leaving the company, driven by a frustration with organising travel for team members for their travels across Afrika.
Naspers-Owned ShowMax Enters European Market By Launching In Poland
Punted as a Netflix rival in Africa, Naspers-owned ShowMax, has announced its launch in Poland. The service will be branded ShowMax and utilize the current ShowMax platform and Polish language apps. The video on demand company says their ShowMax Poland content will be tailored specifically for Poland with a strong focus on local TV shows and movies as they have done in some African markets like Kenya and South Africa. ShowMax say they have acquired exclusive rights to a range of popular local Polish shows like political satire Ucho Prezesa (Ear of the Chairman) as well as a catalogue of the most sought-after movies by Polish directors including the likes of 2016 box office hits Pitbull and Planeta Singli. “This is a big deal for us, especially coming just 18 months after we launched ShowMax." said John Kotsaftis, CEO at ShowMax.
A 12-Year Experiment Is Looking At How 'No Strings Attached' Cash Transfers Can Help Alleviate Poverty In Kenya
GiveDirectly is running a 12-year Universal Basic Income pilot in Kenya, the most ambitious experiment of its kind, involving more than 26,000 people in 200 villages in Kenya. 6,000 of these participants will receive payments of $0.75 per day, about 80 Kenya shillings, or roughly half the typical adult income in rural Kenya, for 12 years. This experiment is built on the belief that empowering people frees them to better themselves, their families, and their communities. In these programs, low-income individuals who receive cash benefits have shown improvements in nutrition, household income, the status of women, school attendance, and a range of other positive indicators. Kenya provides an interesting testing ground for this experiment, especially given the high penetration of mobile money services.
United Nations Special Rapporteur David Kaye Condemns Internet Shutdown In Cameroon
Adding to the growing voices urging telecommunications companies in collusion with regulators in Cameroon to restore Internet access in Cameroon's English-speaking regions, David Kaye. a United Nations special rapporteur for the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, has called on the Government of Cameroon to restore internet services to predominantly English-speaking parts of the country which have been cut off in “an appalling violation of their right to freedom of expression". “I am particularly concerned at the tightening of the space for free speech at a time where its promotion and protection should be of the utmost importance,”David Kaye, Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression at the United Nations
.Africa domain registrations set to kick-off on 04 April 2017 following delegation of registry responsibilities by ICANN to ZA Central Registry. Link
Highlights from the Annual Tech Round-Up 2017's "Looking at the Year Ahead" panel discussion. The panel was moderated by Brenda Wambui and featured Martin Gicheru (Techweez), Nzilani Mweu (Kiptinness & Odhiambo Associates) and Eric Mugendi (iAfrikan).