Louis Otieno, the General Manager Eastern and Southern Africa sees opportunity divide as the other side of the coin to challenges that contribute to youth unemployment in Kenya. In a press briefing at the Laico Regency, Otieno says that Kenyan developers have great ideas from various startups they have pitched in different forums, but they lack direction as to what problems they need to solve.
In one of these many forums, Otieno asked whether the youth have had access to the Vision 2030 document and actually read it. Most of developers with massive ideas don't have an idea of what challenges the government is trying to solve by not reading the Vision 2030 document. "Corporates therefore need to provide direction to startups propelled towards solving this challenges stipulated on the Vision 2030", says Otieno.
Otieno suggests that Vision 2030 should be added into the Kenyan education system curriculum so as to encourage the youth have a local problem solving mindset while growing up and when out of school.
Private sector so far have created platforms to encourage local entrepreneurs solve African problem towards improving their economies, for example Microsoft BizSpark project which help small upcoming business with software support for 3 years as they try to find their feet in the business space.
Otieno also mentioned DEMO Africa, a launch pad platform for entrepreneurs to pitch their innovative products. Microsoft is part of this program towards the goal of the world economic forum.
In other news, the company will roll out Office 365 in the Kenyan market on the cloud platform. They have also introduced Windows Usher and taken it in the enterprise space to bring services to the application level. "The product is great for startups, and easy to use by an average developer", says Dele Akinsade, Director, Developer Platforms, Sub Saharan Africa and Indian Ocean Islands.
Otieno says that from next year (2013) the public won't tolerate lack of IT services at the county level. People will expect these services at their villages, they won't accept to travel to major towns for government services. "Microsoft predicts a lot of devolution from next year in Kenya", says Otieno.