Category Archives: barcampkenya

Nairobi Barcamp 2008

Barcamp was held on Saturday at the Jacaranda Hotel: Hash has a list of links to various re-caps from other bloggers.

Here’s mine from the ½ day at the Barcamp:

ISP’s: Riyaz (of Wananchi) gave a talk on the coming changes in the ISP sector, as he talked about the various offering in the market now;
Safaricom Michael Joseph is Mr. Kenya with 10 million ‘voters’ behind him has 700MB that costs 2,000 shillings ($31.25) (Not enough), and other bundles
Celtel has EDGE for 3,000 not well marketed. Not as good not that it has many more users
Access Kenya Access at Home has two rates one for the day (high traffic costs more) and another for night (much fewer people online, cheaper)
Wananchi offers 512K at 3,000 shared (Not dedicated which costs about 100,000 shillings – and said any ISP who promises you dedicated service at a sub-par cost is lying to consumers). They have Wimax for offices cost about 15,000, are going into cable TV (100+ channels) and will roll out to houses via cable which has higher capacity (separately they got overseas funding for their expansion so no need for a local IPO now )
KDN have laid out more fibre than anyone in Kenya, serve a few hotspots but the butterfly does not fly
Orange/Telkom Kenya. They pay very good salaries to engineers and other members and will roll out data service in a big way soon. They are on CDMA which means that they require fewer base stations (50 in Nairobi to 300 for Celtel and 400 for Safaricom, and will distribute the much awaited I-phone in Kenya and the region

Riyaz mentioned the need for Africa to not miss out on the ongoing technological revolution. He said companies like KDN and Wananchi have free hosting and are ready to partner with developers – he mentioned platforms like Jahazi (a hybrid application accessible from any computer – with chat, news reader and browser) and Zunguka – and challenged Kenyans to be ready to develop application and systems to take advantage of the expected submarine cable (TEAMS) once it lands.

Other platforms/applications I learned about include Helule, Peupe (from multiplechoices), Campus Vybe, Stockskenya, and Haiya

– Hash gave a session on blogger tips that was very engaging

– Interesting talks were given on the Kenya Internet Exchange Point which exchanges net traffic between local ISP’s (and which can be up to 90% or 50 MEGS? in peak time), the Kipsigis Heritage Foundation, Computers for Schools Kenya and Kenyan Poet talked about a local book sale company that accepted M-Pesa payments and had free delivery of books in Nairobi

– Paul Kukubo of the Kenya ICT Board talked about the Kenya Transparency Communication Infrastructure Project (KTCIP?), a partnership with the World Bank that had a grant of $1.5 million to go toward creators of local portals, content, and applications (such as commodity exchanges for agriculture). Awards will be in the range of $10,000 to $20,000 each and a formal announcement will be made later

Safaricom day 12
Deals 5,091 Turnover 438,560,608 ($6.85 million) Closing 7.70 High 7.80 Low 7.55 Last 7.70 Volume 56.9 million shares. Weaker tone. Buyers pulled back and Sellers chased down. 7.35/7.50 is support. We came down on much lower volume. Data and commentary from [Free real-time prices] – authorized NSE data vendor.



This is post number one thousand! Like Romario’s goals, some have been dubious, or forgotten, but many well received. It’s been a great 3 ½ year journey and thanks to all the people I have met, tips sent in, questions asked, frequent commenters et. al

Thank you to my sponsorsMamamikes and Hisanet – whose support has been a helpful reward for the time put into this medium.

Great people I met this week through KBW, Skunkworks, Makutano, and thank for their time and chats (in no particular order) to AKS (of, Coldtusker, EGM, Hash, Intelligensia, Kenyan Pundit, Kirima, Mental, Nakeel, Riyaz, Shiroh Kenyan Poet, Sports Kenya, Alpha Quadrant, and all others from Barcamp, Safari Sevens, and other events this week. I’ll start twittering for Afromusing next.

Safaricom Day 11
Week three kicks off with the company still accounting for over 92% of the shares volume and 75% of the cash at the NSE: Deals 6,151, Turnover Kshs. 785.2 million ($12.27 million), Average 7.82, Closing price unchanged, High 7.90, Low 7.75, Last 7.85, Volume 100.4 million shares. commentary: Market is in equilibrium for now. Short term Investors are still supplying the market just below 8. Very well supported here. I expect a break higher, once the market absorbs the balance. I cannot believe it will be very long because of the activity we have already witnessed.

What’s next
Up next after Safaricom is the KCB rights issue whose options began trading today and whose ‘prospectus is now (PDF)

Safaricom @ NSE Day 8

Deals: 5,620
Turnover: Kshs 883.5 million [$14 million]
Average price 7.84
Closing 7.80 (no change)
High 7.90
Low 7.70
Last 7.90
Volume 112.6 million shares

Commentary: We are still below the 8 pivot, which is key. The pull back was very shallow and confirms underlying muscularity. Foreign buying and selling is now in balance. Courtesy of Rich.Co.Ke [NSE data vendor]

All Safaricom, all the time?
Meanwhile AKS [] has a Nairobi Star column and in February this year, started a running NSE portfolio 2008 with Equity, Access Kenya, Athi River Mining, and Sasini. This week, he retired the portfolio – cashed in a 50% gain to throw everything into Safaricom!

Mainstream blogging
stuff I used to post about and need to get back after IPO rush

Meet the bloggers: The Nairobi barcamp is now set for June 21 and is shaping up to be one of the biggest ever with a packed day planned

Meet the money: Two opportunities for bloggers to meet the e-government, BPO, and Kenya ICT Board officials on 19th and 21st of June. first come, first served

Safaricom blinks & the Nairobi barcamp

Saasa for life
Safaricom has extended its’ Saasa tariff indefinitely (was due to expire on March 31) which has much cheaper calls and SMS’s from 2- 8 PM.

Celtel has come up with some much cheaper rates than Safaricom and many people (myself included) had been waiting to see what Safaricom would do to reign in customers considering a migration.

But for now, my priority has changed to searching for a wireless communication provider. At the Barcamp – the audience was asked how many had internet access at home – with only a fractional number saying ‘yes’ – because the costs are high. Next stop for me is to decide between Flashcom, Popote, Telkom Wireless, Celtel, KDN (Butterfly), Wananchi or Safaricom on a connection for a laptop. Another interesting option I read about but one which has to be discussed with the neighbors.

This was a great afternoon of interesting talks (interrupted by the Arsenal Liverpool game in between).

A notable point of discussion was the apparent disconnect between the business sector and the academia. With so many executives are taking parallel degree programmes on campus one would think they’d be an easy leap in mentoring and business incubation – but, no. A curious footnote was that audit/accounting firms like to hire engineering graduates (because of the analytical way they think) and many engineering students are disillusioned about their future prospects – something that will hopefully be corrected by an ongoing curriculum review.

– Most interesting was how (Edit University of Nairobi) JKUAT students created a local area network (was also done at Moi University)
– Proposal to have another Barcamp for content
Stockskenya (by network associates) with popular bulletin boards and fantasy trading game, with plans to enable online trading

Real estate investment
Bandari villas in Bombolulu (Mombasa) will be completed later this year. The 105 maisonettes and 56 apartments are being put up by the pension fund of the Kenya Ports Authority and are located 6 km from Mombasa and 1.5 km off the Mombasa Malindi highway

The houses are being marketed at local investors and Kenyan in the Diaspora and will be sold by Lloyd Masika agents [e-mail] at between 3.5 and 5 million shillings ($50,000 – 71,000)

– This appears to be another write-up of the houses and write up
– More on the cheqeured past of the KPA pension scheme.
– An update of real estate investments from the Diaspora

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Graduate trainees at East African Standard
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K-Rep: branch managers, business development officers, bank clerks, system administrator, database administrator. Apply to chief HRO 25363-00100 by 13/4
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