In a break from summaries of industries in East Africa this post is a quick update about an interesting week that I’ve just spent in Sri Lanka.
I was there with Hilda (founder of Pezesha, company I worked with earlier in the year) helping to represent them at a bootcamp for start ups from around the world, all organised by DFS Lab.
The next chapter in the East African business journey began on the morning of Monday 23rd January as I woke up in Nairobi and walked to “the office” to go “to work”.
At the end of 2016 I concluded the tour of the East Africa region by meeting an entrepreneur named Hilda, who was introduced to me through an investor I went to lunch with.
Hilda is building out a new venture (last one sold in 2015) and was on the look out for a co-founder to share responsibilities with to help get cracking on making the business happen. This is what I was walking towards.
One of the things that quickly becomes apparent after spending more than a day in Kenya is the ubiquity of mobile money.
By this I broadly mean using your mobile phone to pay for stuff, something often cited in the UK and elsewhere as the next generation of money which is “surely going to take off next year”.
Well, in Kenya, it has already. At last count, 43% of GDP flows through the leading provider, M-Pesa.