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iHub By Jessica Colaço / March 7, 2011

Zege Technologies Wins Young Innovators award at the AITEC conference


The just concluded 2011 All african AITEC Banking and mobile money conference saw a great victory for mobile money and innovators in the industry. The growing number of software developers active in developing mobile money applications had a chance to showcase their products at this year’s AITEC Banking & Mobile Money Conference in the Young Innovators Mobile Applications Hub, sponsored by Google.The Hub had been organized by AITEC in partnership with iHub and the Kenya ICT Board.

One of the innovators on show, Kariuki Gathitu, Systems Architect at Zege Technologies, made an impressive Young Innovator Showcase Presentation in the conference programme on “Mobile money frenzy – the search for system unification” that left delegates inspired and aware of the young innovative talent present in the region. He also spoke abut MFI’s and their search for assimilation into Mobile money. He had been part of an impressive speaker line-up of over 100 local and international experts who had been sharing knowledge in a wide range of key subject areas over the two days of the conference.

Paul Kukubo, CEO of the Kenya ICT Board, welcomed the initiative, calling it a valuable contribution to the development of Kenya’s software industry. “Kenya has a wealth of software expertise to offer the regional and international markets,” says Paul Kukubo, CEO Kenya ICT Board, “One of our objectives at the Kenya ICT Board is to develop homegrown innovation and so for young innovators like the ones participating in this forum, the opportunity offered here at a professional business event is tremendous as it will expose them to potential partners, customers and even investors.”

Up for grabs were two award. Young innovators best product and Young innovators best stand. After a day of showcasing and presenting of their products, the young innovators were put in a draw to win the prestigious awards.

Among the contenders were  Jamobi from OTB, Jumuika from Jumuika,MPAYER from Zege Technologies, and mfarmer from media edge technologies. Three of the Young Innovators(OTB,Jumuika and media edge technologies) are recipients of Tandaa Local Digital Content Grants being disbursed by the ICT Board with the fourth, Zege Technologies, being a young startup set up at the iHub.

After long deliberation, the winners were chosen. Best Stand went to Jumuika for their active presence and great product (an advertisement mobile application). However the overall award for the best Product went to MPAYER (mobile money integrator, aggregator and automator) from Zege Technologies. This was a great victory for the iHub, seeing one of their green members Kariuki Gathitu and his colleague Kennedy Otieno receive a trophy award from AITEC Chairman Sean Moroney, Central Bank Governor Professor Njuguna Ndungu and PS in the ministry of information and communication Bitange Ndemo. We say congratulation to Zege Technologies and wish them all the best as they continue to charter the way forward for innovation.

Author : Jessica Colaço

Jessica Colaço is currently the Director of Partnerships at iHub. She was the Founding Manager between 2010 and 2011 at iHub and Research Director between 2011 and 2013 at iHub Research. She is passionate about Innovation, Research, Mobile and Robotics Technology, Mentorship and Entrepreneurship in Kenya as she uses her position at iHub to court local, regional and international stakeholders to adopt Kenyan-made and African-made solutions. As an upcoming angel investor, she courts local and international investors to invest in great tech ideas and companies at idea and concept stage. She is also a Mobile and Robotics Tech Evangelist, Co-Founder of WMIAfrica and AkiraChix, ISOC-Kenya Chapter, Treasurer, ACM-W Nairobi Chapter Chair, TED Global Fellow 2009 and upcoming Guitarist. She was named one of the top 40 women under 40 years in Kenya's business scene by Business Daily on 2009, 2011 and 2012. Her endeavour is to put Kenya and Africa on the map for technology achievements and spur innovation within the country and continent! She blogs at:

  • David at 14:35:51PM Monday, March 7, 2011

    Congrats Kariuki

  • Mentalacrobatics at 15:44:49PM Monday, March 7, 2011

    Well done all the winners and especially Kariuki Gathitu, Kennedy Otieno and Zege Technologies.

  • Sam Gichuru! at 16:11:41PM Monday, March 7, 2011

    Karis, am very proud of you, actually I have to admit you have taken me by suprise I did not have much faith in MPAYER when you started :) good lesson here not to always listen to the critics that is what great entrepreneurs are made of, good job man, I cant wait to hear what happens next… we live in exciting times! – Once more I stand corrected and eat humble pie!

  • Eric at 17:12:38PM Monday, March 7, 2011

    Good stuff, kudos to Zege Technologies, developments like this will put Kenya on the map.

  • Kevin Kaiguara at 23:21:23PM Monday, March 7, 2011

    Congrats. And good work iHub for developing such a talent and giving him room to blossom. Ther’s hope for Kenya when such talent and innovation has such a place as iHub to flourish and be nutured.

  • Su at 02:17:59AM Tuesday, March 8, 2011

    Well done to Kariuki, Kennedy and Zege Technologies. Very cool stuff !

  • Roy at 11:00:07AM Tuesday, March 8, 2011

    Well done Kariuki and Kennedy.. awesome product

  • Kariuki Gathitu at 11:59:20AM Tuesday, March 8, 2011

    Thanks everyone. I appreciate the support and encouragement the iHub has given my team in achieving this. We are looking forward to even greater things as we move forward to changing the world! Thanks Guys.

  • Stellalicious at 16:18:49PM Tuesday, March 8, 2011

    I am so proud of Zege true showcase that with persistence accompanied with excellence and faith you can be anything and you can do any thing.Great things are in store for zegetech.Good job to ihub for creating space for start ups with great potential. Big ups Zege the world is wathching.

  • ken mwai at 09:52:18AM Wednesday, March 9, 2011

    Well done and congrats

  • Jackie at 11:53:59AM Wednesday, March 9, 2011

    Awesome stuff! So glad to see the amazing things coming out of our young tech community. Kudos!

  • Kassych at 12:10:27PM Wednesday, March 9, 2011

    Kariz.. you rock !

  • Ben at 09:53:56AM Wednesday, September 14, 2011

    Way to go, truly inspirational!


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