Kenyan innovator scoops Sh80 million Nokia award


A Kenyan innovator John Waibochi, has won Sh80 million for the most innovative application at the international Nokia World and Developer Summit in London.

Waibochi, the Managing Director of Virtual City Ltd, was all smiles as he took home the Nokia Calling All Innovators Award after beating off strong challengers from Pakistan, China, UK and India, among other leading countries.

The award was in recognition to the company’s Mobile Distributor Solution designed to improve the distribution efficiencies for small and micro enterprises in the fast moving consumer goods market.

A panel of experts judged their submission — Mobile Distributor Solution, which supports small and micro-enterprises in emerging markets — to be the worthy winner. Waibochi Sh80 million in venture capital investment and a commitment of support from Nokia to help turn the idea into reality.

Also present at the award ceremony was Dorothy Ooko, Communications Manager of Nokia, East and Southern Africa.

Through the Nokia Developer Summit, the Mobile Distributor Solution aims to boost the profitability of small and micro-businesses by increasing the number of transactions as well as improving inventory management, the accuracy of records, and reporting from the field.

In the Growth Economy Venture Challenge, developers were required to submit their best idea for a new mobile product or solution designed to improve the lives of people in the developing world.

Judges looked for one idea that has risen above the rest, an idea that changes the way people use Nokia mobile devices, demonstrates how mobility can radically improve the lives of people who reside in areas where the average income is under US$5 per day, or an idea that recognises a good business opportunity that also contributes to “doing good” in the world.

Nokia’s global developer programme, Forum Nokia, connects developers to tools, technical information, support and distribution channels they can use to build and market applications around the globe.

From offices in the US, Europe, India, Japan, China, and Singapore, Forum Nokia provides technical business development to support developers and operators to assist them in achieving their goal of successfully launching applications and services to consumers and enterprises.