26 posts tagged internet
26 posts tagged internet
Urban, rural, Old Town or rapidly growing capital… Kenya is East Africa’s most advanced internetworked society with the cheapest rates for mobile internet services. Don’t miss the satellite dish in the heart of Old Mombasa.
All photos taken by Niti Bhan in October 2011.
“ICANN used to say if you want to participate in Internet governance come to ICANN,” said Fadi Chehadé. “We’ve changed that, now ICANN is coming to the stakeholders. We’re not waiting for you to come. We’re coming to you.”
Chehadé made his comments during the Africa Multi-stakeholder Internet Governance meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The two-day meeting ended Friday after drawing Internet leaders from across the continent.
“We will have ICANN staff, at least one, in each of the 6 regions of Africa. North, South, East, West, Central and the Indian Ocean,” said Chehadé.
“I want African on-ramps into the ICANN structures. I will give you the on-ramps, but you need to climb them.”
he ICANN leader also said he would like to see a dramatic increase in the number of accredited Domain Name Registrars on the African continent. Currently there are only five accredited Registrars in Africa among more than one thousand worldwide, but Chehadé said he wants to see that number increase five-fold in less than two years.
“This is about us moving the needle forward. Africa will not wait,” said Chehadé.
Spending time with the startups of Savannah Fund proved to be a unique opportunity to think about marketing in a context quite different than my own.
Coming from the tech space in San Francisco I wasn’t sure exactly what to expect while working with teams from Ghana, Uganda and Kenya but picked up quite a few insights and learned a lot along the way.
I saw that there is no one-size-fits-all solution in crafting an effective marketing plan, that each startup faces unique challenges in their home country, and that in areas of constraint, creative strategies can be used to reach an audience and effectively convey the message.
I also learned that although operating in vastly different environments, startups launching in San Francisco and their African counterparts face many of the same challenges in their initial stages.
Here are some key insights on the challenges and opportunities of marketing startups in African markets.
4.) Cultural Relevance:
Africa is not a country, but rather a diverse continent made up of 54 countries. Startups looking to expand their market outside of their home countries may be challenged by a lack of understanding of users outside of their own space. An interesting example of this was observed with Khola Studios, a gaming studio from Uganda. The team at Kola Studios is looking to expand a popular game, Matatu, outside of Uganda but may have to change the name to make it culturally relevant in other East African markets.
Africa doesn’t need Amazon. It has its own rainforests and its own e-commerce giants.
Online retailer Jumia has secured $26 million (€20 million) to expand into additional markets in Africa. Like its American forebear, Jumia sells a wide range of goods at low cost with easy delivery and returns.
The retailer is currently active in Nigeria, Egypt, and Morocco and sells clothing, electronics, furniture, books, baby products, cosmetics, home appliances, and even booze.
Rather than paying online, shoppers can pay at their doorstep. Jumia launched about a year ago out of Rocket Internet and quickly grew its customer base.
Many of Africa’s e-commerce companies focus their operations in South Africa, where the economy and access to technology is the strongest.
“There is very much a demand from the growing middle class to have quality products both in beauty and in fashion that is currently not met in the Nigerian market or in many other African countries,” said Rocket Internet CEO Stiegeler in an interview with VentureVillage.
“That means that either they buy things abroad or have other people ship the product in, which is obviously very time-consuming, expensive and tedious.
There is little doubt that the Internet is having a profound effect on the way Nigerians do things - from business, to searching for information, to enjoying and sharing entertainment, the contemporary Nigerian’s approach now wends towards using online tools.
Since its launch in 2011, YouTube has warmed its way into the hearts of Nigerians, resulting in its extensive use across different sectors and groups.
In 2012, the number of views in Nigeria grew by an amazing 125%, making Nigeria the country with the 2nd highest viewership growth in Sub-Saharan Africa.
According to the new figures which place Ghana in the top position with 140% viewership growth, Nigeria is ahead of the other Sub-saharan African countries with local YouTube domains- Kenya 95%, South Africa 80%, Uganda 75% and Senegal 75%.
Speaking on the newly releases figures, Taiwo Kola-Ogunlade, Google’s Communications and Public Affairs Manager in West Africa said,
“Nigerians have embraced YouTube, creating and watching locally created and relevant content in the different local languages. They are part of a highly connected global community that uploads 72 hours of video every minute and watches 4 billion hours of video a month”.
The African Union has set aside the 19th to 24th of November as Africa ICT week in recognition of the ever increasing relevance of the convergence of telecommunications computer and audio-visuals in the last two decades or so in an information age. The week thus underlines the importance that information, knowledge and technology play in modern socio-economic development by highlighting the importance of ICT as a tool of development.
Developing markets and getting them to a stable state where the ecosystem is healthy requires time, money and effort.
Stable ecosystems exist where there is good demand, adequate choice and supporting infrastructure that is up to scratch.
Identifying the different players and pushing the value these newly created markets present is a huge undertaking.
Google is taking the lead having created a forum where key players in the ecosystem are identified and taken through an opportunity matrix and thereafter empowered with tools to exploit the same.