Innovators who wanted to pitch their ideas to Safaricom had a had time reach the firm, especially those who didn’t who run what Kenya’s leading telco. There public email to the innovations team most times went unanswered, and discouraged many to write to the firm as if they were writing to some god.
In a move to become more open and approachable, Safaricom recently unveiled Zindua Café, an interactive portal aimed at helping innovators and developers countrywide to share their ideas, applications and prototypes with the firm.
According to the firm, the portal will serve as a central place to capture innovators ideas and prototypes and as well ensure their Intellectual Property are respected. This is also aimed at promoting and helping more youth to come up with new ideas, products and services to encourage innovation in the mobile technology space.
Just recently, Safaricom launched Spark Venture Fund, an early stage fund aimed at helping local innovators with the necessary resources to build viable businesses from their apps. The firm launched the fund after acquiring M-Ledger, a local startups to help M-PESA users track their mobile money transactions.
Safaricom follows Microsoft, which launched a similar portal to protect innovators IP and help them monetize. Safaricom also hosted a forum on IP, monetization among other issues.
The firm also hosts the annual Safaricom Appstar and Appwiz challenges aimed at nurturing innovation in the country. Orange, the parent firm of Orange Kenya also unveiled a similar iniative recently but the firm is yet to announce anything locally.
To quickly sign up to Zindua Cafe, click here.