This is the first of a series of posts detailing the trends and common threads that I’ve learnt through interviewing a wide range of businesses operating in East Africa.
The East Africa Business Podcast is the weekly podcast that I’ve been running for the last six months. Right now we’re on episode 29 with plenty more to come, and so if you’re interested in hearing new episodes and checking out the archive, then hit Subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.
The first major sector that we’re going to look at is Food.
At the weekend I was invited to my friends’ wedding.
They’re getting married in her home village near the Ugandan border towards the end of the year and as we went into the details of how it was all being arranged I found myself asking question after question, so this post is about that.
It also explained the lyric in a Kenyan song I’ve been listening to recently which, up to now, hadn’t really made much sense.
As I get acclimatised to what working weeks look like in Kenya this is my first attempt at a “thought piece” within the confines of a job.
It’s about the internal dissonance I felt at the lack of rain in the country right now, and veers off towards using “data for good”.
The next chapter in the East African business journey began on the morning of Monday 23rd January as I woke up in Nairobi and walked to “the office” to go “to work”.
At the end of 2016 I concluded the tour of the East Africa region by meeting an entrepreneur named Hilda, who was introduced to me through an investor I went to lunch with.
Hilda is building out a new venture (last one sold in 2015) and was on the look out for a co-founder to share responsibilities with to help get cracking on making the business happen. This is what I was walking towards.
In a slight detour from the East Africa Business journey, I’m updating this week with what I got up to over the festive period.
Continuing the tradition of ostensibly treating all forms of travel as being the search for a decent profile picture, this is an evaluation of how the Western part of Canada fares.
It’s broken it down into various aspects of the culture I interacted with for those also interested in finding a beaut pic there.
I’ve been out of Africa for just under two weeks and felt that I’d update the blog with some of the observations I’ve made since touching down back in England.
Today I’m flying back to England to see friends and family for Christmas.
This post summarises the time spent travelling between Rwanda, Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania as I worked out the various opportunities that existed in the region
After getting to the stage of deciding that Kenya had won as the place I wanted to “do business” in the new year, I sat down and began writing down all of the things I would need to work out.
There were work permits, people to meet, ideas to weigh up, research to do, things I knew I needed to do, things I thought well, maybe, I don’t need to do, what to have for breakfast…
and I basically realised it could all get quite overwhelming.
Over the past four months I’ve traveled through Rwanda, Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania, evaluating each in terms of where I would like to live for the next few years building a business.
After spending three and a half months keeping my mind open to all options (that I felt were morally acceptable), in Zanzibar I began to crunch through everything that I had learned, and switched focus towards fleshing out a plan of action for what I was going to do.
This post is about how I came to the decision of picking Kenya as the place to base myself from (once I get a visa).
In writing a blog post each week about what I learn around East Africa, I invariably keep notes on little things that I see/hear.
Not all of these fit in with a particular topic and so have (until now) remained unpublished.
As I close in on evaluating the different countries, this post is an aggregate of the bits which have “fallen between the gaps”. Expect to learn about facial expressions, mosquito preferences and Japanese horoscopes…