Kenya leads the pack with an average of 60 percent of companies shortlisted for this year's coveted East Africa CIO100 Awards.
The regional CIO100 Awards recognizes companies that have used IT in the most innovative way to solve business challenges and achieve organizational goals. The awards have been running for the last nine years and have become a yardstick to benchmark a company's innovativeness among its competitors and industries.
This year, 384 companies applied and for the award from six east African countries - Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi and Ethiopia. "For the first time, companies from Ethiopia have made submissions to be considered for the award," said Andrew Karanja, Director, CIO East Africa. There has been a steady uptake of technology in Ethiopia as the market continues to open up.
Among the companies that made submissions from Ethiopia range from Gebeya, a technical training company based in Addis Ababa, i-Tech Systems Engineering and Consulting, Meheda Food Processing Company, East Africa Tiger Brands, Development Bank of Ethiopia, Zemen Bank and Dashen Bank SC.
The financial services industry comprises an average of 40% of the submissions in this year's eagerly awaited awards to be hosted in Naivasha. Commercial Bank of Africa and NIC Bank, now rebranded NCBA after the merger, Equity Bank, DTB Bank, Standbic Uganda, Standard Chartered Bank Kenya, I&M Bank, Sidian Bank and SMB Bank are among the banks which submitted their entries.
Insurance and the savings and credit sectors are also very well represented with most of the large insurance companies making submissions. These include UAP Old Mutual, the Madison Group, AAR Insurance, Bluewave Insurance, Mwalimu Sacco, Bandari Sacco, Chai Sacco and Boresha Sacco just as a sample of the submissions.
Manufacturing and hospitality industries had the lowest entries this year with both recording less than two percent of the entries. "Manufacturing and hospitality industries numbers went down this year compared to the last two years where we had a strong field from those two industries," said Melissa Dorsilla, the CIO100 Project Lead at CIO East Africa.
Government agencies and ministries also made substantive submissions these include Kenya Revenue Authority, Uganda Revenue Authority, Kenya Electricity Transmission Company (KETRACO), Uganda Investment Authority, National Drug Authority - Uganda, National Hospital Insurance Fund among others.
The adjudication of the awards is on-going and the finalist for the various awards with announced early next week. The adjudication is conducted by a jury of five panelists five- regional jury made up of industry experts from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and South Africa. The jury is led by Prof Louis Fourie, former VC at the Western Cape Peninsula University of Technology.
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