Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Tandaa Roundup

I was not able to attend last week's Tandaa - the first content conference hosted by the Kenya ICT Board, but have been noting what was said, and for other absentees, here’s a recap:

Rombo asks where were the bloggers? Multiple speakers acknowledged the important role Kenyan bloggers now play in generating and distributing Kenyan content. and later the (Kenya) ICT board has set aside US$4 million to be disbursed over the next four years to fund feasible Kenya content generation projects.

Kenyan Poet was there, gave a talk and also added a photo album of Tandaa photos from the event

Another nice recap from Kipkemoi who notes It is heartening that many website owners are earning good money from e-commerce… points that came out:
- There is a market for local content.
- The pay for registration model for portals and content sites isn’t feasible at the moment.
- Monetizing mobile content provision is easier. (because mobile users are used to paying for services)
- Government registration need to be streamlined, too many vague licences


From Brighter Monday - numbers don’t lie - While we continue to complain that there is no ecommerce in Kenya, this company realized a turnover of $2 million in 2007. Now that was eye opening. Well from my analysis I know this takes hard work. To prove this, they have about 8000 inbound links! And they are leaping of the fruits. (Anyone who was there can please confirm my figures in article's comments on this below);
- I was also impressed by (kenyanpoet.blogspot.com); I think she depicts a good example of successful blogging. A snapshot of her traffic analysis showed that 42% of traffic came from referral links, 40% from search engines, 16% was direct traffic while 4% was in 'others'


The Mars Group Kenya blog voiced the questions that I’m sure many attendees had in mind i.e. where’s the money? - I am a large local content generator and run a Kenyan governance and transparency web portal with 19 thematic sub-domains containing over 1 and a half million terabytes of local content including digitized government and official reports on the national budget, government, state corporations and good governance. The site also features original multi-media resources including online news content generated by a team of 17 Kenyans all below the age of 30….In its first year of operation it got over 20 million hits, registered over 7,000 subscribers and webcast live international events including the November 5th election victory of Barack Obama from the US Ambassador’s Residence from http://marstv.marsgroupkenya.org .The site is regularly cited as an authority by local and international media and was recognized as a new media exemplar by www.opendemocracy.net.

Offline comments from the Skunkworks forum include a lengthy one from Robert Alai who commented that We must focus on local mpaka it becomes music……If you wanted a subscription website, you should have started with kenyalaw.org. If you wanted affiliates, mamamikes.com has affiliates. Lets focus on local…local examples and then mention the foreign ones just .. when you make people believe that Facebook is great, we won’t head anywhere. See why Tanzanians are engaging more in bongo5.com and jamiiforums than facebook and others. They are actively loading pics and content and these two websites are really coming…..up well and considering the age of the websites, we will see nice things from them. We should not glorify anything western. We must start appreciating our own facebook like Ngari has developed a good site, www.kasarani.com

8 comments:

DataMiner said...

Good roundup. Had wanted to attend but my work schedule could not allow. I'm a believer in local content, and I believe it is the way to go.

Maishinski said...

safcom volumes dont add up when compared to actual shares that changed hands.

something rotten stinking from somewhere near NSE

Rafiki said...

Banks, you didn't miss anything, I went to KICC, and left after two minutes. Tandaa was poorly organised, with bad timekeeping and most participants were just there because entry was free, so you found a lot of idlers and students there.

ke said...

What ecommerce kenyan site is this that makes $2 million dollars?

Africa is not ready for ecommerce and this is due to a number of factors.

The first factor is that not many people are connected to the internet. Kenya has a population of 35 million. How many of these have regular, access to internet services? I'd say less than one million at most.

The second factor is that the mode of payment of ecommerce is electronic and it mainly means people not only have to have credit cards, they have to be comfortable using them on-line. While a credit society is slowing developing, it is still not widespread enough and certainly not when it comes to purchasing goods on-line.

The third factor is infrastructure. When it comes to ecommerce, you have to be able to rely on an efficient and honest mail service system. This basic, but important infrastructure is still not present in much of Africa.

When it comes to the internet, Africa's potential lies in outsourcing and the use of cheap labor, not ecommerce, which caters to frivolous consumerism in countries where the populations have expendable income.

The only exception I can see if someone used the internet to appeal to a certain segment of the population (urban, connected and with plastic) -- that would go on-line to buy things like movie tickets, tickets to entertainment events and maybe the buying and selling of stocks. In other words, things that would allow people not to have to stand in line for 3 hours to get a basic service.

kenyanentrepreneur.com

Maishinski said...

@ ke.

On the contrary. Ecommerce has huge potential in Africa.

Remember - the "e" in eCommerce stands for "electronic". Who said credit cards are the only means of making electronic payments?

Look beyond the box and I bet you will slap yourself twice for sitting on a pot of Gold.

;-)

tlcstudio said...

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bankelele said...

DataMiner: me too, seemed rushed

Maishinski: they have come down in the last week, is someone felling shy now?

Rafiki: thanks, that seems to be a consensus

KE: in due course, apps will be developed locally to meet demand

Tlcstudio: you’re welcome, it because I read on Techmasai

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