Kenyan scoops $1m in Nokia mobile app challenge

John Waibochi of Virtual City, from Kenya, on Thursday scooped the Nokia $1,000,000 Growth Economy Venture Challenge at Nokia World.

Launched at CES 2010, Nokia’s Growth Economy Venture Challenge called on innovators from around the world to create a mobile product or service to improve the lives of people in developing nations and compete for the chance to win venture capital investment of $1 million.

This is an investment of $1m in Waibochi’s business, so it comes with support and connections that only an organisation of Nokia’s size can provide. The award was given out by Stephen Elop, Nokia’s new CEO, as the first action of his at Nokia — this sends a certain signal to all devs around the world.

Virtual City Ltd, a home-grown Kenyan company, has developed a solution that aims at addressing systemic issues along the Supply Chain for distributors and retailers of Fast Moving Consumer Goods in emerging markets.

The Mobile Distributor Solution is designed to contribute to improved efficiencies and value to stakeholders in the value chain and result in increased number of transactions, accurate records, improved Inventory management and reporting from the field and effective management decision making. The solution will also bring value to a large number of beneficiaries comprising of thousands of small and micro enterprises in the FMCG Market.

It’s a product that can be monetised due to high demand by both retailers and distributors in Kenya. This is a very solid company, with a solid proposal. Seeing the video (not available yet) of this working with one of Africa’s leading beverage company’s was impressive.

More on this story.



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