The Nailab for the first time this weekend will host Mombasa Hackathon with the aim of building a new strong tech community in the coastal region. The event dubbed “Incubation without borders” will take place on September 20th and 21st . The Nailab in partnership with JKUAT Mombasa and the ICT Authority, will bring together the tech enthusiast from the coast region and will help the innovators creatively build on existing ideas and also encourage building of new ideas out of nothing and tackling the problems that just need fixing to create fun and revolutionary products.
The event is set to take place at JKUAT Mombasa campus from 8:00am to 5:00pm on the 2 days and targets 150 attendees. It will be culminated by an award ceremony from which we will recognize the best ideas presented from the 2 hack sessions.
According to Nailab CEO Sam Gichuru :
“As we roll out the incubation program throughout the country, with the support of the ICT Authority, we are keen to engage tech-prenuers to understand the different challenges they are facing in their localities to ensure that the program will work specifically to mitigate this challenges and ensure that our tech-prenuers are well prepared for the market,”
I know we have discussed the value of hackathon and tech competitions in Kenya. At one point I thought such events distract the start-ups from developing and selling their products or services but then I came to realize something else. The problem is not with the competition or the hackathons but with the developers or start-ups which do not look beyond such events.
The Nairobi tech community can be considered mature at this level but still the competition and the hackathons help as discovery channel for the new start-ups and talents. For Mombasa, this would be a big opportunity especially to work with Nailab. Of all the hubs I know, Nailab has proven beyond any doubt its ability to produce some of the best startups around. TrINC Media which was recently acquired by Radio Africa Group started and was incubated at Nailab. Ghafla which has changed the gossip and entertainment scene in Kenya was incubated and mentored in Nailab. My Order, Ukall, Sematime are among other big names which have passed through Nailab.
So what is Hackathon? According to Wikipedia:
A hackathon (also known as a hack day, hackfest or codefest) is an event in which computer programmers and others involved in software development, including graphic designers, interface designers and project managers, collaborate intensively on software projects.
In Kenya, the famous MFarm is among the start-ups which started at a hackathon event. So if you are love tech and live in coast, don’t miss out.