Connect with us

Tech

Kenya looks up to Google’s Project Loon for better internet coverage

Technology giant Google is looking to strike deals with Kenyan telecommunications operators to deliver mobile internet coverage to remote locations through a network of cost-efficient floating balloons

Published

on

Technology giant Google is looking to strike deals with Kenyan telecommunications operators to deliver mobile internet coverage to remote locations through a network of cost-efficient floating balloons. Google’s Project Loon, has set out on a global campaign to increase internet connectivity for millions of people living in rural poorly connected areas.

Kenya’s ICT Ministry has welcomed the move on the premise that an aerial network would cut costs and enhance internet usage across all segments of Kenya’s population. Principal secretary in the ICT Ministry Sammy Itemere says, “It is companies such as X [formerly Google X] that innovate and provide solutions that benefit our city. We welcome the use of high-altitude balloons to create an aerial wireless network that offers real benefits to consumers.”

Speaking at the opening of a workshop to sensitize stakeholders on the balloon technology, the PS said the balloon network can easily achieve 4G-LTE speeds and would help Kenya multiply ICT’s impact on the economy.

A 2017 report revealed that 67% of Kenyans have access to the internet, mainly using mobile devices, this is impressive compared to the continent’s 18% average.

The balloons enable the nearest telecommunications partner’s ground station to receive the wireless internet signals that are then transmitted across the network of balloons and then back down to users’ mobile phones on the ground. Each balloon covers up to 5000 square kilometers and runs on renewable energy.

Google has already have deployed 10 balloons for testing in Nakuru, Nanyuki, Nyeri, and Marsabit.

Project Loon has received unanimous applause worldwide for its role in providing internet to disaster-stricken areas. Google had previouly partnered with AT&T to provide internet coverage to Puerto Rico following the devastating Hurricane Maria. However, on the flipside, balloon crashes have occurred in nearly 10 countries, including Panama and the USA.

Tech

Mastercard Foundation launches $200 million fund to support female-centric African SMEs

Published

on

The Mastercard Foundation Africa Growth Fund (MFAGF), has announced the launching of a $200 million funding initiative for female-centric Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Africa.

The MFAGF, in a statement on Thursday, said the funding scheme will work through African investment vehicles to support early-stage, growth-oriented SMEs on the continent, and beside providing capital for investment vehicles, “The Fund of Funds” will offer a business development facility for its portfolio companies.

The initiative, it said, will use gender lens investing principles to help advance the Mastercard Foundation’s Young Africa Works strategy, which aims to enable 30 million young people in Africa, particularly young women, to access dignified and fulfilling work by 2030.

“The program has so far identified two investment vehicles, one in East Africa and another in West Africa to help in supporting entrepreneurial growth,” the MFAGF said.

“The Mastercard Foundation Africa Growth Fund’s goal is to provide dignified and fulfilling work for young people, particularly young women.

“The Fund of Funds is catalytic, helping to bring in additional capital for African entrepreneurs, particularly female entrepreneurs. It strengthens and de-risks African investment funds committed to advancing gender equity in entrepreneurship.

“Mastercard has a vision of enabling 30 million young people in Africa to access dignified and fulfilling work by 2030. Eligible enterprises are those owned and led by African entrepreneurs and located on the African continent are often considered high-risk,” it added.

Continue Reading

Tech

South African venture capital firm, 4Di Capital, announces new $25 million seed funding

Published

on

South African early-stage venture capital fund firm, 4Di Capital, has announced a new $25 million seed funding few months after the company raised $8 million funds from the South African SME Fund.

Founded in 2009, 4Di Capital principal partner, Justin Stanford, said the outfit has since then played a key role in uplifting startups across different parts of the continent with the startups reaping from its hands-on experience and approach in growing and scaling new businesses in Africa.

“Having spent the past 13 years refining our investment strategy and expanding our footprint past South Africa into the East African market and beyond, we look forward to collaborating hand-in-hand with our new partners,” Stanford said in a statement on Wednesday while announcing the funding.

The new fund which was created in partnership with DotEXe Ventures in Mauritius, Stanford said, will help 4Di Capital invest in more viable startups in Africa.

“Unlike other markets globally which have become saturated, the African market still represents an opportunity for investors.

“The investment landscape is less competitive, resulting in more favourable valuations and terms, and thus the opportunity to potentially achieve higher returns,” Stanford added.

Continue Reading

EDITOR’S PICK

Politics12 hours ago

Tanzanian president, Samia Hassan, positions to become party, CCM’s chairperson. Will she get it?

Tanzania’s president, Samia Suluhu Hassan is in a firm position to grab the heart of her political party, Tanzania’s Chama...

VenturesNow13 hours ago

Nigeria’s apex bank, CBN, introduces new cash withdrawal policy but legislators aren’t impressed. Here’s why

The lower chambers of Nigeria’s legislative house, the House of Representatives have asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to...

Musings From Abroad13 hours ago

Months after acquisition, Tata Group to spend $400 million to refurbish Air India

Following the acquisition of Air India by the conglomerate, Tata Group, the airline will spend more than $400 million to refurbish...

VenturesNow14 hours ago

South Africa’s coal exporter, Thungela Resources, expects doubled profit for 2022

One of South Africa’s main coal exporter, Thungela Resources (TGAJ.J) on Thursday revealed that it expects its full-year profit to...

Metro16 hours ago

Nigerian Army denies Reuters reports of forced “abortion programme” for Boko Haram victims

The Nigerian Army has debunked a report by international media outfit, Reuters, which indicted the military authorities of forcefully terminating...

Culture17 hours ago

Restaurant owned by Nigerian named among top 200 in South Africa

A restaurant owned by a Nigerian entrepreneur, Ken Ayere, in South Africa, Hombaze African Cuisine, has been named in the...

Tech17 hours ago

Mastercard Foundation launches $200 million fund to support female-centric African SMEs

The Mastercard Foundation Africa Growth Fund (MFAGF), has announced the launching of a $200 million funding initiative for female-centric Small...

Sports17 hours ago

Cameroon keeper Onana throws more jibes after World Cup controversy

Cameroon’s first choice goalkeeper, André Onana, has thrown more jibes on the country’s football authorities following a controversy that rocked...

Musings From Abroad2 days ago

25 far-right group supporters arrested as Germany foils coup attempt

Germany on Wednesday foiled a violent overthrow of the state to install as national leader a prince who had sought backing from...

Politics2 days ago

South Sudan’s ruling party endorses President Salva Kiir for next election

The ruling party in South Sudan has endorsed President Salva Kiir as its candidate in the country’s delayed election scheduled...

Trending