Explorers, investors and stakeholders in the oil and gas industry in Kenya and the region as a whole now have a dedicated portal to provide information on the new industry following the launch of an industry focused news website.
According to the founder of oilnewskenya.com Kamau Mbote the website is as a result of the increased interest from investors in the oil and gas sectors following a number of discoveries in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Mozambique that has seen the East African region now named the new oil and gas frontier.
The creator of the website Kamau Mbote a veteran journalist, with years of experience writing on business and technology, reckons that despite the potential and the interest in the region there still lacks a platform from where interested parties can get credible news.
"When we started the website it was more of the desire to specialize in a new area of news that did not have a single journalist focusing on. Two weeks into the writing there was a discovery by Tullow Oil that saw the audience increase ten-fold as interested Kenyans and players in this field sought a credible news source," says Mbote.
Within weeks of establishing the website he says it had received numerous partnership deals by conference and exhibition organizers most recently being the three day Eastern Africa Oil, Gas, LNG and energy conference in Nairobi where the startup was the only media partner from the region.
The company has also seen increased interest on its social media platforms as mostly investors seek to take advantage of news in the region in the equity markets abroad as to where most exploring companies have been listed.
"Most importantly is that Kenya now has a platform from where anyone interested in what is happening in the region can access current news and relevant data," Mbote adds.
The website owners say they hope that the portal can also help train the new crop of journalist who will be tasked in writing industry related stories both accurately and professionally.
Mbote adds that the creation of the website and events such as the Oil and Energy Services Local Content Convention set for later this month will go a long way in providing credible information and educating people on the happenings in the industry.
"If you ask people on the street they will tell you of the great hopes they have from the energy sector in the coming years. If you probe them as to how much worth of resources the country has you will realize just how much little information is out there. Without information there can't be proper accountability by the government to its people and an equitable trickle down of revenues to the population. We hope we can play a role in empowering people by educating them." He concludes.