Awarding ceremony for the Second Innovation Fund grantees

TANZICT is proud to announce a bunch of new innovations from bright young Tanzanian minds! As Hon. Ambassador of Finland in Tanzania Mrs. Sinikka Antila put it “Innovation is what drives humanity forward. Innovation is also something that to an increasing degree is driving Tanzania forward”. The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Communication, Science & Technology Professor Patrick J. Makungu followed the Ambassador’s views “Our country’s development requires creativity from individual citizens and startup companies; because it is from them that we shall create economic value and its associated multiplier effect – including quality employment and government revenue.”

Above mentioned can be also witnessed in the light of the statistics: more and more Tanzanians are interested to apply and also the selection process is coming more challenging, when the quality of applications is increasing. The Awards Ceremony was held in Buni Hub and showed a significant public interest by 21 different media representatives broadcasting and interviewing winners and organizers.

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Innovation Fund Winners with Hon. Ambassador of Finland in Tanzania Mrs. Sinikka Antila, The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Communication, Science & Technology Professor Patrick J. Makungu and Director General of COSTECH, Dr. Hassan Mshinda.

The first call for applications of the Innovation Fund was launched in November 2012 and received 25 applications in total. This second round got 44 applications, which shows that the need for pre-seed funding is distinctive and Innovation Fund is becoming a known source. Selection committee comprised of COSTECH and TANZICT staff and private sector representation reviewed the applications, interviewed 14 finalists, and selected the following ten companies or business ideas as the first grantees:

  1. Go Join Africa Safari, Patrick Moshi.
  2. Mobishop, Yakub Leslie & team.
  3. StockPoint, Benedict Tesha & team.
  4. Mobile Donation System, Abdul Bashiri.
  5. SMS Notification System, Thomson Lutta & team.
  6. Mparliament, Godfrey Magila.
  7. Bongotoonz, Musafiri Mbilinyi.
  8. Land Ownership Documentation System, Grace Makanya & team.
  9. GetPOS, Fayaz Valli.
  10. TiME-system, Josephat Mandara & team.

Total grant sum for the second call for applications was 150 000 000 TSH (70 000€). The next call for applications has been just closed and the next winners will be announced later this year.

Congratulations for the winners of the grant and good luck for the further development of the ideas!

The Innovation Fund for ICT Innovations is managed by COSTECH and funded by the TANZICT-project as part of project component 3: Tanzania Innovation Program. The fund is a competitive grant fund focusing on supporting ICT innovators with innovative projects fostering solutions to social and economic problems in the country. The fund focuses on getting new ideas, products and services using ICT to demo, prototype or pilot stage, where the ideas can be tested in the market with end-users, and a feasible business model can be built around the idea or prototype.

Recap of activities happening at Buni hub between August and September 2014

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New interns batch at Buni hub listening to fellow intern presentation.

August started with Richard Njau, Google Plus and YouTube enabler from Nairobi , Kenya visiting the hub and offer talk about online contents and its potential to African digital entrepreneurs and musicians. The 2 hours event from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm covered different opportunities on social media sites and digital contents.

Richard spoke about how we could maximize the internet potential in Tanzania through content creation, content distribution and content promotion. He touched on inspiration content, education content and positive entertainment contents.

From 1st – 5th of August we had a five days workshop on SQL server conducted by volunteer trainer Habib Hassan who covered different features of  SQL server. The training was conducted in the evening between 12:00 pm and 8:00 pm. The audience involved in the training included hub members and stakeholders from outside the hub who were looking to equip themselves with skills and advanced techniques  in SQL server.

Another volunteer trainer who is also a graduate of Buni Internship Programme, Amani Ghachocha  conducted  a training on MVC  framework for developers who are working at the hub. Model-View-Controller is the software architectural pattern for implementing user interfaces. The techniques is used by developers when developing the system while considering user requirements by splitting the system in three interconnected parts. The training was from 9:00 am to 11:00 am on Monday 4th of August.

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Libery Deogratius before the session start.

On  August 15th, volunteer trainer, Libery Deogratius offered a training on Ethical Hacking. He covered different aspects of cyber-security and how people can protect themselves from cyber attacks. He also explained about different tricks used by cybercriminals  while launching attacks to the systems. He also talked about the vulnerability of content management systems and why they should not be used to create websites with sensitive information especially with government agencies and financial institutions. The training started at 11:00 am and lasted for few hours.

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Thomson Schoemaecker General Manager, Squad Digital looking on designer’s work.

On 6th September Buni hosted African leading advertising agencies Squad Digital and SCANAD at the hub who were conducting a challenge on graphics designing to the graphic designers of the hub. The 3  winners of the challenge got an opportunity to be employed and receive contract with these companies. One of the winner Musa Kalokola is a student of Mzumbe University, he could not commit to work with the company due to college  time table but he has received an opportunity to do internship with the company.

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Nfrnds at Buni hub.

On 11th and 12th September we had two days  innovation workshop organized by Nfrnds, organization from Israel that works in fostering innovation in developing countries. The event was sponsored by Tigo Tanzania. From the event attendees got opportunity to work on different business ideas using new tools for business innovation and development.

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Villan presenting the Android version of the “USIDUMAE” app.

On 19th September, interns of the Buni internship program showcased their initial prototypes of the products that they are developing. The interns are currently developing two application and one electronic product. The electronic product is the water level detection system using arduino and sensors and the two products includes; “Usidumae” android and USSD app that gives details about maternal health, eating habits (diets) and proper parenting for local women and “Dodoso” and application which help researchers to collect information using feature phones.

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Michael soon after being interviewed by Karsten (Photo courtesy of Karsten)

On 23rd September, We had a visitor from Germany, Karsten Kaminski who is a journalist. Karsten covered story of Buni hub. He talked with entrepreneurs and developers at the hub and interview the students from Buni internship program. Karsten spent the all day at Buni hub and in the evening he was able to conduct interview with Carolyne Ekarisima founder of “Apps and Girls” on the role of Apps and Girls in encouraging young women participation in the ICT sector.

On 24th September, Buni hub and Mara Foundation Tanzania organized a talk about opportunities for local SME’s to exploit from Foreign Direct Investments in Tanzania. The talk was given by Jean Van Wetter country director VSO Tanzania. Jean spokes about how SME’s can win contract from foreign investors.

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Make Fellows session at Buni Hub

On 27th September, it was another session of “make fellows” whereby individuals interested with building electronics products meet and develop their skills. This Saturday Victor and Jackie again they were with the teams helping them to build the prototype ready for testing next week.

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Audience during the talk organized by Mara foundation and Buni hub.

Some of the opportunities that came from the hub and its partners between August and September includes; Youth Entrepreneurship Program, the program is conducted by University of Dar es Salaam Entrepreneurship Centre (UDEC) in relationship with Buni. There was scholarships for Tanzanian students from EABL foundation for students from underprivileged communities.

In September also there was an opportunity to study distance learning course from Stanford University that was organized with co-founders of the leading technology companies in Silicon Valley. The course is about how to start successful startup company and the window for registration is still open. There was an opportunity for African researchers from Google Africa to get funded on their research and the window for the innovation prize for Africa is still open for local innovators to apply.

Innovation Fund round has been opened!

This week TANZICT opened the Innovation Fund for the second time during 2014.

Last time the Fund was opened, we received 44 applications, from which 10 projects were chosen to receive funding. These projects will be awarded with a total of nealry 190 million Tanzanian Shillings.

If you have a business idea or a concept and that you need help with to develp it as a promising new product or service, Innovation Fund is just the thing for you. You can apply on the Innovation Fund page.

Deadline for applications is by 30th of September, 2014 – so ACT FAST!

The objective of the Innovation Fund is to fund implementation of innovative, commercially viable ideas, which when realized, will address specific social and economic needs which exist in Tanzania. The fund focuses on getting new products and services to demo, prototype or pilot phase. The fund is managed by COSTECH in collaboration with TANZICT. All of the teams selected for the grant are needed to specify a Hosting Institution and a Mentor for their project.

Are you ready to get a contract to work with Africa’s leading advertising agencies ?

unnamedIt another great opportunity from Buni hub for innovative thinkers and graphic designers. Do you have  a mind to think critically and come up with new cool and innovative designs ? This is an opportunity for you.

Squad Digital and SCANAD, reputed advertising agencies in Africa.  They are looking for graphic designers and they are ready to offer contracts to the competent individuals in graphics innovations and designs to work with them. The companies are organizing an activity at Buni hub to recruit the winning individuals. The opportunity is available for youth below 25 years old. You must have your laptop with a photo editing software e.g Adobe Photoshop. The panel of judges will shortlist 10 finalists who will pitch their creative concepts and design for 5 minutes. The target is to come up with an advert campaign and accompanying concepts (Print, Billboard, Social, Web). 5 winners will get a chance to secure a working contract with SCANAD or Squad Digital.

The event will be happening at Buni Hub, COSTECH  building ground floor, Sayansi, Kijitonyama from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm on 6th September 2014. To register for the event please fill this form http://goo.gl/oJl6k4 . Priority will be given to those who register early to automatically qualify for the initial stage of the challenge. Buni graphics designers are highly encouraged to apply for this great opportunity.

Internship final presentations, 29th Aug @2pm – buni hub

The Internship Programme that started on the 8th July 2014, is ending on the 29th August, with a final presentation of the learning’s and the applications that have been developed through the programe.

Audience: Everyone is welcomed to hear on what the interns have learned and what applications have been developed

Date and Time: Friday 29th August, 2pm – 4pm

Summary of the Applications Developed

1. Visualization of Public Data.

Currently most public data are in form of numerical statistics which can be hard to analyze, predict and to make a reliable decision from, hence the motive of the creation of the Visualization of public data web application project to solve this problem. The application has compiled and visualized most demanded and used public data using effective graphs and charts. Currently the application has compiled and visualized health and diseases statistics like HIV, and has the expectation of widening this scope to cover education, finance research reviews, government budget, student results and other most demanded public data.

2. Kwetu TalenT.

Kwetu TalenT is a website project which will bringing together different talents and broadcasting them to the public for recognition. Currently the website has a collection of art, music, and sports talents with the aim of also increasing other talents like successful business skills and others. The customers for this website will be everyone with a talent and can show it to the public, and the companies looking for talents.

3. Vipi Huduma.

Vipi Huduma is a web application project developed with the complaints and complements platform used to collect complains and complements from customers about different companies, firms or institutions and their services and products. The companies that will be registered in this application will be able to respond directly to their customer’s complaints and complements. The main clients of this web application will be all the governmental and Non-governmental organizations rendering social services or selling products to the public.

4. Soka

We have seen many mobile application spreading information on world football like Goal and Live Scores. Most of these applications don’t have enough information on the Tanzanian football, hence the motive for the development of Soka mobile application project that has focused on spreading information on the home (Tanzanian) football leagues. Its main attention is on the Vodacom premium league but also all other football matches played by Tanzanian football teams with teams from other countries. The information displayed will be based on transfer news, match fixtures, live updates and league, team and players statistics. For all Tanzania patriots, funs of home football this is for you stay tuned COMING SOON.

5. Kilimo Info.

Since there have been a great demand of agricultural information, Kilimo Info web application is developed to spread most information concerning agriculture in Tanzania. This web application is will help the farmers, investors the government and anyone else looking for information concerning agriculture. The application will give easily accessible information, so far in a scope of region wise like the main crops grown, soil specifications, and  weather information

6. Afya App

AfyaApp is a mobile application that provides information of different diseases, and especially disease outbreaks, and preventive measure on those diseases. Simple first aid information is also provided. The Application, addresses the need to have reliable and easily accessible disease information