Dr. Kamau Gachigi is the Founding Executive Director of Gearbox, a non-profit organization that provides members with access to modern machines for prototyping and low volume manufacture. Gearbox also avails training, and incubation/acceleration services in order to broaden access to manufacturing in Kenya. Dr. Kamau was a key consultant in the creation of a science curriculum for the Faculty of Arts and Science at the planned Aga Khan University in Arusha, and the principal consultant in the creation of an engineering curriculum for the planned Kiambu University of Technology and Innovation. He also holds two government appointments, one as Chairman of the Board of the National Industrial Training Authority and another on the Board of the Numerical Machining Complex, a State Corporation. Dr. Kamau is also a member of the Consultative Advisory Group of the Partnership on Applied Sciences, Engineering and Technology (World Bank and select African Governments). He previously served as the Director of the University of Nairobi Science and Technology Park and founded the Fab Lab at the University of Nairobi, another in a low income area in Nairobi and is setting up a third in a Kisumu. On this episode you'll learn: What was it like for Dr. Kamau to meet Mark Zuckerberg and why was he interested in what Gearbox is doing? Why do a lot of companies looking to enter into Kenya have such a hard time and find that they need to partner with an organization like Gearbox to do so? How does Gearbox scale what they're doing? What's the funding environment for hardware startups in the incubator?
Justin Hall has been a Principal at Golden Gate Ventures since December 2014. In addition to his responsibilities at Golden Gate Ventures, Justin has organized a number of community building events in the Singapore startup scene, including SuperHappyDevHouse.sg, WalkAbout.sg, and FailCon.sg. As principal, he manages Golden Gate Ventures' existing portfolio while sourcing investments across APAC. In addition, he is director for Golden Gate Ventures Annex Fund, focused on follow-on funding for existing portfolio companies. Before Golden Gate Ventures, Justin was previously an Account Manager for Rakuten LinkShare Corporation, based in New York, and managed online e-commerce sales for prominent web-based retailers and service providers. Justin is a New York transplant and fitness fanatic, as well as a huge fan of Chicken Rice and kopi gau.
Say hello to Kago Kagichiri, CEO and Co-founder at Eneza Education. Kago is an internet-less space advocate, having built technologies for last mile mobile handsets. Eneza Education is preparing the next generation of leaders in rural Africa. They deliver affordable, high quality education as interactive lessons, live tutoring and a gamified personal experience to over 1.8M learners irrespective of the mobile device they own in their home. Eneza's learners access nationally aligned primary and secondary, financial and teacher training content for as little as $0.50 per month. On This Episode You'll Learn: How does user acquisition for Eneza differ between a market like Nairobi and more rural parts of Kenya? With the speed of innovation happening in African education, what does Kago see as the future of education in Africa? Will Edtech be a collaborative or a competitive force? How was Kago’s experience raising capital from Impact Funds different than the Venture Capital he’s raised What have been some of the toughest challenges Kago faced while scaling to African countries outside of Kenya?
Amoroso Gombe is the Cofounder and Director of fpesa, where he is building functional money markets in emerging economies. Previously Amoroso has helped HP expand into the East African market and has worked as an engineer at Interswitch, an Africa-focused integrated digital payments and commerce company. On this episode you'll learn: What does the regulatory climate look like for Fintech startups? How does Amoroso think crypto currency will play out in Africa How do Forex markets work in foreign markets? How do Kenya's regulators view the fintech industry?
Afzal Habib and Sabrina Habib are the cofounders of Kidogo, a social enterprise that improves access to high-quality, affordable Early Childhood Care & Education in East Africa’s low-income communities. Working mothers living in East Africa’s informal settlements (urban slums) face a difficult decision of where to keep their young children during the working day. As a result, they are typically left with leaving children home alone , pulling an older sibling out of school to take care of a younger sibling, or using an unlicensed, home-based “babycare” with an untrained caregiver. Kidogo solves this by using a Hub and Spoke franchising model to train and empower women in these area to provide quality care and education. Prior to co-founding Kidogo, Afzal was a Management Consultant at BCG and has experience working with CARE International’s Enterprise Development Unit in Bangladesh and with the Acumen Fund in Tanzania building a pipeline of impact investments in the region. Sabrina leads Kidogo’s Strategy, Partnerships & Impact. She spent 4 years working with the Aga Khan Development Network in Kenya & Tanzania and recently worked with the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network to promote a child-integrated approach in the post-2015 global agenda. On this episode you'll learn: How does Afzal define a social enterprise? How is raising capital and your fiduciary responsibility to your shareholders different in a social enterprise? Realistically, how scalable is a social enterprise? What is the current ed-tech environment in East Africa?
Daniel Maison is CEO/Cofounder and Isaac Hunja is CMO of SkyGarden, an ecommerce platform built for African businesses. Business owners that want to use the platform download the Sky.Garden Merchant App from Google Play and set up an account. All they need to provide are their personal details, name of their shop and other shop details such as opening hours, location and mobile money phone number. Isaac previously helped launch Uber into the Kenyan market as well as grew Hellofood Kenya which was eventually acquired by Jumia. Daniel was previously a Regional Director for East Africa for the leading incentives solution company in Africa. On This Episode you’ll learn: How big of an e-commerce opportunity does rural Africa present? What were the biggest sales channels for African merchants before Sky Garden? What are Sky Garden’s best acquisition channels? How does the Sky Garden solve for the chicken and egg problem all marketplaces face?
Dale Beaumont is best known as an award-winning technology entrepreneur, international speaker and the author of 16 best-selling books. Having started his first business at the age of 19, Dale went on to build three different million dollar companies before the age of thirty. One of these companies saw Dale write and publish 16 best-selling books, which have collectively sold over a quarter of a million copies. This was followed by the launch of Business Blueprint, an education company designed to help fellow entrepreneurs build the business of their dreams. Then in 2016 Dale and his team launched BRiN, the world’s first business advisor powered by artificial intelligence. BRiN is a smart-phone App that is capable of providing personalized education and human-like support to every entrepreneur on the planet, all at the same time. Plus to assist BRiN to do her job Dale and his team have developed a library of over 1000 TV quality business education videos. On this episode you'll learn: Where does Dale think AI’s current shortcomings are that the market might have overinflated expectations? Which city in Australia does Dale see becoming the Australian hub for Artificial Intelligence startups? How doe Dale think entrepreneurs should balance putting effort into their personal brand vs. their business or does he think building a successful company will speak for itself? How has Dale seen entrepreneurship and the attitude towards entrepreneurs in Australia change since he started his first company at 19?