CIO East Africa (Nairobi)

Kenya: Tichaa, M-Ledger Top Safaricom Appwiz Competition

Safaricom Limited, has today awarded six early stage mobile technology companies with a cumulative cash prize of KES 3.7 million in the just concluded Safaricom AppWiz Developers' Challenge.

The AppWiz Developers Challenge was designed to help local developers form start-ups and partner with industry players in offering enterprise solutions. The challenge was anchored on entrepreneurship and capacity building within the mobile apps space.

The contest has been running for the last six months and attracted 1,569 applications and 274 mobile based ideas. 48 of this were shortlisted to attend a hack-a- thon session from which the top 18 teams were selected to participate in a 3 month incubation process.

"The search for sustainable growth is what has brought us here today. Innovation and growth are strongly connected and talking about one without mentioning the other is difficult," said Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore.

'Tichaa', an app that allows children to learn Kiswahili in a fun and engaging way was awarded KSh. 1.7 Million for winning the education category and emerging tops overall. Developed by a team called 'Thirst Interactive', the app has attracted local and international interest and is currently on the Safaricom Appstore and Google Playstore.

M-Ledger, an application that enables customers to manage their M-Pesa transactions, placed second in the challenge and took home KSh.1.2 Million. Other winners were Bud Doctor- which won in the health category, the Maasai Moran App which addresses the challenges faced by the Maasai boy, My Taxi App which won in the games category and SOKONECT- an agricultural app.

"We can't cut, spend or tax our way to better days. We need to learn how to quickly swim in these waves of transformation and speedily adapt our businesses, products and services to this change. At Safaricom we have chosen to remove all barriers that might keep anyone out of the information age. Ours is to develop a 'digital nervous system' that is quick to respond to these fast-changing demands of a digital age," Collymore further noted.

So far, 10 of the participating teams have registered companies and some apps like Sokonect-an app that connects farmers to export companies and Smart County-a revenue collection app are already at the pilot stage.

Team Name

Application Name

Short Description

Category

Winner/ Category

Dynamic Data Systems

M-Ledger

M-Ledger is an application that transforms your phone into a financial journal from your MPESA transactions.

Financial Inclusion

Runner Up / Winner Finance Category

Thirst Interactive

Tichaa

This is an application that allows children learn Swahili in a fun and engaging way.

The application contains puzzles that are interactive with sounds and pictures designed to help young children

learn Swahili. https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.mytichaa.tichaa.free&hl=en

Education

Grand Prize Winner / Winner Education Category

Bud Code

Bud Doctor

This application helps you find medical specialists from the comfort of your smartphone. Designed to help out in the tedious task of finding specialists, the app links to a database providing information on medical specialists who are normally difficult to locate.

Health

Winner - Health Category

Kikosi Limited

Smart County

This is an application system containing tools that allow revenue collection through the use of SMS and USSD. The application is hosted over cloud, and users are able to access reports on various devices. Target market is county governments.

Financial Inclusion

GAME 254

The Maasai Moran

The Maasai Moran is a casual game for mobile and web platform that depicts the challenges and customs that a Maasai boy has to go through to become a Moran warrior.

Games and Entertainment

Winner - Games Category

M-Safiri Experience LTD

My Taxi

MyTaxi is an App that allows you to book the nearest Taxi.

Winner - Utilities Category

AppBees Africa

SOKONECT

SOKONECT is a mobile application designed for use in the horticultural sector to promote production; marketing and consumption of fresh produce especially vegetables. The application acts as a link between exporting companies, small-holder farmers and consumers of fresh produce.

Agriculture

Winner - Agriculture Category

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