Dahabshiil has provided seed capital to two start-ups founded by young entrepreneurs in Uganda as part of a programme co-sponsored by the US Embassy in Kampala.
Dahabshiil, a money transfer company based in the UAE, has invested in GSM-based agriculture market solution, the Mobile Business Financial Information Tool (MoBFIT) which allows farmers to pre-sell their produce to buyers before harvest. MoBFIT is agricultural supply chain management software that will directly connect rural farmers to buyers in the market at a low cost via SMS technology aimed at broadening the market for grass root farmers, reduce the cost of marketing farm produce and the dependence on middlemen.
MoBFIT was the winner of the hackathon during which six teams competed in an intense race-against-the-clock to develop business propositions to meet key market needs and create jobs.
Dahabshiil is also investing in the hackathon’s second placed initiative, Yaka Ko, an emergency power credit service to help clients enjoy uninterrupted power usage. In addition, local startup incubator GoBigHub offered free mentoring to all of the hackathon participants through its partners Bytelex, Azems Value Add, and Strategy Consults.
“Both MoBFIT and Yaka Ko, alongside many of the other business ideas presented at the hackathon, are an incredible demonstration of the power of young people to drive social and economic change,” Dahabshiil CEO, Abdirashid Duale said.
“We hope that this event is seen as an illustration of what can be achieved through coordinated partnerships between the public and private sector. Dahabshiil is very proud to have collaborated with the US Government as part of +256 Rising, in the run up to the next Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Silicon Valley later this year,” said Duale.
US Embassy Chargé Trish Mahoney, said that the hackathon should help improve Ugandan entrepreneurship and promote sustainability in new business.
“Entrepreneurship brings down barriers between communities and cultures, and builds bridges that help us take on common challenges together,” she said.
Quintan Wiktorowicz, Managing Partner of social impact organisation, Affinis Labs, which planned the hackathon, said, “The level of entrepreneurial talent in Uganda is amazing, and we are hopeful that many of the teams from +256 Rising will go on to form successful businesses and help strengthen the Ugandan economy.”