Thursday, June 20

Tech & Business

SMEs
  • SME loan products offer a considerably low interest rate, which helps fund businesses.
  • Pezesha is a financing platform for small and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs) that enables them to access affordable credit and other financial services through embedded finance infrastructure.
  • Safaricom has partnered with Pezesha, a digital lender, to credit small business owners, adding to the telco’s existing loan products.

Pezesha loan products

Pezesha is a financing platform for small and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs) that enables them to access affordable credit and other financial services through embedded finance infrastructure.

Pezesha has created an integrated digital financial infrastructure whose mission is to lead platforms and marketplaces where small and medium-sized businesses work through a collaborative approach. Financial institutions or networks connect on this platform and are matched with quality SMEs, driving meaningful financial inclusion and reducing any inequalities in access to formal financial services.

In 2023, Pezesha partnered with FSD Kenya to

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Price for Engineering Innovations
  • Price for engineering innovations was awarded to Esther Kimani from Kenya.
  • A solar-powered tool using AI and machine learning-enabled cameras to swiftly detect and identify agricultural pests and diseases has won Africa’s largest prize for engineering innovation.
  • Her tool reduces crop losses for smallholder farmers by up to 30 per cent while increasing yields by as much as 40 per cent.
  • The Africa Price has supported almost 150 entrepreneurs across 23 African countries, generating over 28,000 jobs and benefitting more than 10 million people through the innovative products and services developed.

Price for Engineering Innovations was awarded to Esther Kimani from Kenya. This price, recognised as Africa’s most esteemed engineering accolade, was presented in Nairobi on June 13, 2024.

Kimani’s pioneering AI-driven pest and disease detection tool for crops secured this price for its groundbreaking impact on the agricultural sector, particularly for smallholder farmers in Kenya.

Read Also: Inside Africa’s

Smart cities
  • Smart cities are emerging as a critical solution to address the rapid urbanisation and infrastructure challenges facing African cities.
  • Smart cities in Africa focus on infrastructure development to enhance connectivity, mobility, and accessibility.
  • The limitations in human resources, organisational capacity, and rigid bureaucracy are significant obstacles to adapting to the demands of digital transformation and smart cities in Africa.

Smart cities in Africa

Smart cities are emerging as a critical solution to address the rapid urbanisation and infrastructure challenges facing African cities.

Smart cities agenda in Africa strive to ensure inclusive and equitable development by addressing social inequalities and providing all residents equal access to opportunities and services. This includes affordable housing programs, social safety nets, and community development initiatives to improve living standards and reduce poverty in urban areas.

Smart city projects also prioritise accessibility and universal design principles to ensure that infrastructure and services are accessible to people

LB Investment
  • The Joint Venture will serve to boost global investment and economic development by synergistically combining both parties’ key capacities in the market.
  • Both entities aim to leverage their respective strengths to advance LB Investment’s initiatives.
  • Established in 1996, LB Investment has consistently been recognized as one of Korea’s premier fund managers.

AIM Global Foundation, an independent international organization dedicated to empowering investments across the world, and Korea-based LB Investment, which has $1 billion Assets Under Management (AUM), have announced the set-up of a Joint Venture, along with a landmark Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at the ongoing AIM Congress 2024 in Abu Dhabi.

The Joint Venture will serve to boost global investment and economic development by synergistically combining both parties’ key capacities in the market.

The MOU marks a critical moment in global investment cooperation. Both entities aim to leverage their respective strengths to advance LB Investment’s initiatives through the platform …

RANSOMWARE PAY
  • Payment for ransomware attacks is not only impacting large businesses even smaller ones have been hit with 7-figure demand.
  • The rate of ransomware attacks falls slightly, but recovery costs hit $2.73 million.
  • Despite the soaring ransoms, this year’s survey indicates a slight reduction in the rate of ransomware attacks

The amount organisations are paying to get back their data from cyber criminals has increased by 500 per cent in the past year, a new report by Cybersecurity solutions provider Sophos has revealed.

 

Sophos, in its annual “State of Ransomware 2024” survey, says this has seen organizations that paid the ransom report an average payment of $2 million, up from $400,000 in 2023, with ransoms being just one part of the cost.

 

Excluding ransoms, the survey found the average cost of recovery reached $2.73 million, an increase of almost $1 million since the $1.82 million that Sophos reported in 2023.

TikTok community guidelines
  • TikTok Community Guidelines will see introduction of stricter For You eligibility standards.
  • Video sharing entity says this code emphasizes responsible behavior on and off the platform
  • According to the recently released Reuters Institute Digital News report 2023 survey, Kenya leads in world TikTok usage.

Popular video sharing platform TikTok, has unveiled significant updates to its Community Guidelines and introduced new features aimed at supporting creators and maintaining a safe environment for users. The platform’s Community Guidelines, which outline rules and standards for all users, have been updated to provide greater clarity and transparency.

These updates, set to take effect in a few weeks, include refined definitions for policies on hate speech and health misinformation. Additionally, TikTok has detailed how it moderates features like Search, LIVE, and the For You feed to ensure a positive user experience.

One of the key updates is the introduction of stricter For You eligibility standards. …

digital economy Internet access
  • Market size of Africa’s digital economy could reach $712 billion by 2050.
  • In 2022 only 36 percent of the African population had access to broadband internet.
  • Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) are streamlining adoption of 5G services.

Africa is on the verge of an economic revolution. From the north to the southern part of the Saharan desert, nations are striving to eliminate poverty and gain a strong foothold in global markets.

In the same vein, the continent is banking on the potential held by the digital economy. Reports ping the sector to higher standards, including a report from non-profit Endeavor predicting that the market size of Africa’s digital economy could reach $712 billion by 2050.

The growth is propelled by the massive engagement of the continent’s younger population, rising smartphone adoption and increasing internet penetration.

Read also: World Bank backs Smart Africa’s Digital Academy with $20M grant

Digital economy in

Starlink kit
  • Starlink, has introduced a significant price reduction of 55.6% for its installation hardware kit in the Kenyan market.
  • This promotional offer is valid until May 15, providing Kenyans the opportunity to purchase the hardware equipment at $292.36 (KSh39,500), a substantial discount from the usual asking price of $658.04 (KSh89,000).
  • An analysis in October 2023 highlighted Kenya and Mozambique as the top markets with the highest charges for internet installation compared to other African countries where Starlink has a presence.

Billionaire Elon Musk’s satellite internet firm, Starlink, has introduced a significant price reduction of 55.6 percent for its installation hardware kit in the Kenyan market. This promotional offer is valid until May 15, providing Kenyans the opportunity to purchase the hardware equipment at $292.36 (KSh39,500), a substantial discount from the usual asking price of $658.04 (KSh89,000).

The promotional message displayed on the firm’s website states, “SpaceX’s Starlink kit has an offer …

female financial inclusion
  • Data from the World Bank’s Global Findex Database 2021 indicates significant strides in female financial inclusion over the past decade.
  • In the 10 years leading up to 2021, the share of women in Africa who owned a financial account doubled to more than 49 per cent.
  • This surge in women’s account ownership in many developing countries is largely attributed to mobile money platforms.

Data from the World Bank’s Global Findex Database 2021 indicates significant strides in female financial inclusion over the past decade. The gender gap in ownership of formal financial accounts in developing countries has decreased from 9 to 6 per cent, signifying a move towards financial parity for women.

The increase in account ownership among women has outpaced that of men, with 68 per cent of adult women in developing nations now participating in formal financial systems. This surge in women’s account ownership in many developing countries is …

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