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MTN Uganda hands over Prizes to Winners of the MTN Open API Challenge



Staff Writer

  • 203 individuals and teams registered as participants
  • MTN Uganda acting CEO Gordian Kyomukama handed over cash prizes to winners
  • Winners each walked away with UGX 10m, 7m and 5m in prize money for the first, second the third positions

Friday, 28th March, 2019 – Kampala: MTN Uganda has today handed over cash prizes worth UGX 66m to winners of the recently concluded MTN Open API Challenge. The series concluded last Friday 22nd March at the Innovation Village where nine winners from three categories were announced.

At the handover ceremony, MTN Uganda acting CEO Gordian Kyomukama was ecstatic about the role of MTN Uganda towards development of financial innovation in the country:

“MTN Uganda remains committed to supporting local innovation by enabling local developers leverage our technology infrastructure” said Gordian Kyomukama, the Chief Technology Officer at MTN Uganda and also the acting CEO.

“Our platforms such as the MTN App challenge, MTN Innovation Awards, the MTN Open API and the MTN Startup fund are a testament to our commitment to innovation with the ICT space in Uganda” he continued.

The MTN App Challenge, which was launched on Thursday 13th December 2018, focused on building innovations for digital payments; innovators were required to build applications that facilitated digital payments.

The MTN Innovation Challenge was executed online with a number of physical engagements in the form of trainings and mentorship sessions in partnership with the Innovation Village.

According to CK Japheth, Team Leader at The Innovation Village – the execution partners for the MTN App Challenge – participants had shown immense progress in developing and refining various applications as a result of the MTN Uganda App Challenge. 

“New innovations take time to ideate and develop but we are happy with the progress made over the three months of this competition” said CK Japheth.

The MTN Open API challenge run for 3 months ending on 18th March 2019. Participants were required to create apps that use the MTN Mobile Money Open APIs or to update/connect an existing app with the MTN Mobile Money Open API.

Applications were to be built in the following categories:

  • Transport: Apps developed in this category digitized through MTN Mobile Money with payments for delivery or use of local services in the transport sector
  • HORECA: Apps developed in this category digitized through MTN Mobile Money payments for service delivery/consumption in Hotels, Restaurants, Bars, and Cafes
  • Distribution in FMCG: Apps developed in this category digitized through MTN Mobile Money with payments made within a selected FMCG (fast moving consumer goods) value chain

A total of 203 individuals and teams registered with 22 teams making it to the finals for judging (HORECA – 9 submissions, TRANSPORT – 8 submissions and FMCG – 5 submissions). However, only 3 winners from each category were awarded. Prizes for winners included:

  • Pre-seed cash prizes
  • Entry to compete for seed funding from the MTN Startup fund
  • Acceleration support to build their startups

With the MTN Innovation Challenge done, Ugandans are now set to benefit from a wider community of developers using the MTN Open API to monetize various innovations in key industries.

Last year, MTN Uganda became the first telecom company in Uganda and in the MTN Group to grant third parties access to its Mobile Money Access Programming Interface (API). It also launched a UGX 1BN (US 270,000) Start-Up Fund that will provide a financial boost to start-ups that participate in the MTN Innovation Challenge Series.

Category Position Team Name Prize (UGX)
FMCG Winner Minute 5               10,000,000
1st Runner up Powell Pay                 7,000,000
2nd Runner up Engineering connections                 5,000,000
HORECA Winner App About               10,000,000
1st Runner up Epay                 7,000,000
2nd Runner up Sowani                 5,000,000
TRANSPORT Winner Easy Matatu               10,000,000
1st Runner up Endobo                 7,000,000
2nd Runner up Your Waste                 5,000,000

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