Kenya’s Greenbell Communications has been chosen winner of the 2015 WVEF Tech Challenge a joint initiative between the International Trade Centre (ITC), Google and CI&T. The winning bid by the GBC team was chosen following the launch of the Tech Challenge in July, which saw more than 300 companies enter the competition. Web and app developers were asked to develop a digital solution that will support an ITC initiative launched on 1 September to connect one million women entrepreneurs to markets by 2020.
The GBC team created a Women Vendors Exhibition and Forum application that aims to connect women entrepreneurs across the world. The GBC team consisted of Kenneth Muturi, Michael Buluma, Rose Maghas, Anastacia Ndunge, Eric Muthomi and Catherine Njau.
ITC, Google and CI&T will in the coming months work closely with the winner of the tech challenge, the GBC team from Kenya, to further develop and launch the final product in 2015. In addition, the GBC were invited to present the project at the upcoming World Export Development Forum, which will be held in Doha, Qatar, on 20-21 October.
The announcement was made during the closing ceremony at the Women Vendors Exhibition and Forum (WEVF), held in São Paulo, Brazil, in partnership with Apex-Brasil where ITC Executive Director Arancha González said: ‘This is the first time that ITC has held such a tech challenge. It has confirmed that the innovative pool is a deep one and that technological platforms can be used to facilitate problems of access and connection that many female entrepreneurs face. All of the finalists showed an appreciation for these constraints and build solutions that economically empower the women in our network to grow through trade.’
Representing the GBC team in São Paulo, Catherine Njau, said: ‘We didn’t know what we were doing at first. It was a scary experience, but my boss pushed us to do it. We decided not to not stop until it worked and we needed the help of everyone on the team.’
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