For two days last week, with a Friday 15 conclusion, Safaricom held its first Engineering Summit at Sarit Centre, Nairobi. The telco, among other partners and sponsors, showcased new technologies and emerging trends, while bringing together the tech community in Kenya. The fair, according to the telco, will be held annually.
Dubbed Safaricom Decode, the summit covered a variety of tech topics, ranging from fintech and development, to emerging trends and tapping local software engineering talent.
Attended by some of the telco’s top leaders, Safaricom revealed that it plans to ensure that about 70-80 percent of technology used by the corporation is developed in-house.
Therefore, to ensure sustainability and even achieve more milestones, we must create a training ground and grow a big community of software engineers. I believe this summit will not only be a platform for collaboration in terms of tapping into fresh talent but also, it will create an opportunity for us to showcase our technology capabilities on the global stage, making us a powerhouse for software engineering in the Silicon Savannah, not just as Safaricom but as Kenya,” said Peter Ndegwa, CEO, Safaricom.
The summit rounded up more than 300 innovators from small businesses, large industries, academia, and government who are all passionate about software development.
Some of the products showcased on stage included Safaricom’s fintech products such as Daraja API and other innovations from partners and sponsors such as Huawei and AWS.
Also present was a team from platinum sponsor Mozilla, which recently launched bookmarking app Pocket to the East African Market.
A networking session was held, where key leaders of the industries interacted with other attendants.
“Kenya has long been known as Africa’s Silicon Savannah. Living up to this expectation, we intend to form a vibrant community of tech enthusiasts willing to find real solutions to real challenges,” said Mr Ndegwa.
“At Mozilla, we build products that advocate for a safe internet, as privacy is key in everything we do. We just launched Common Voice, our initiative to teach machines to learn how humans worldwide speak, including Swahili,” said Alice Munyua, Director, Africa Mradi – Mozilla.