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

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  • 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

About MTN Uganda

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Fanfare in Masaka as MTN launches “MoMo Nyabo” promo

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Bebe Cool entertains revelers in Masaka. Bebe Cool entertains revelers in Masaka.

Bebe Cool entertains revelers in Masaka.

By Our Reporter

Business was brought to a standstill in Masaka town on Friday afternoon as MTN Uganda launched the second edition of the “MoMo Nyabo” campaign which is aimed at encouraging customers to transact using Mobile Money.

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The campaign which was officially launched during a press briefing held at Brovad Hotel was marked by a flurry of fanfare, much to the excitement of the town dwellers.

The launch was followed by a procession around the town displaying the brand new Toyota Wish cars and motorbikes that will be given away during the campaign.

It culminated in a mega concert which was hosted at the Masaka Recreation grounds. Revelers were entertained by Uganda’s top artistes including Jose Chameleone and Bebe Cool among others.

During the concert, the first winners in this year’s MoMo Nyabo campaign were also announced. Kigundu Rashid and Steven Nanziga emerged the lucky winners and each walked away with a motorcycle.

Hundreds turned for the concert at the Masaka Recreation grounds.

Hundreds turned for the concert at the Masaka Recreation grounds.

Meanwhile, prizes worth Ugx 1.5billion will be won by lucky customers in the eight week campaign.The prizes include 24 cars, 32 Boda bodas, 160 smartphones as well as mobile money.

The MoMo Nyabo promotion is part of a series of offers the telecom company has launched in recent times to reward customers including bonus on data bundle purchase via MTN Mobile Money and a few days ago, MTN slashed mobile money sending rates by more than half.

“This will be a double win for our customers. First of all, they will be sending money at half price. While doing that, they will be entered into a draw to win one of those exciting prizes. So in a way, all our customers will be winners”. Samuel Gitta, MTN Uganda’s Ag. GM Risk & Compliance said.

“We are continually evolving to make our customers’ lives better. We value and appreciate our customers and all that we are doing is just to give back to them for continuing to support us,” he added.

For customers to stand a chance to win one of the prizes, all they have to do is dial *165*1#. Customers will then automatically enter into a draw to win the exciting prizes.



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Local Business

Vivo Energy in joint venture with Kuku Foods to accelerate roll-out of KFC restaurants

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By Our Reporter

Vivo Energy plc (Vivo Energy), the pan-African retailer and distributor of Shell and Engen-branded fuels and lubricants, has agreed to form a non-fuel joint venture to accelerate the roll-out of KFC restaurants in Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda. The 50:50 joint venture will manage and operate the restaurants in the three markets on behalf of Kuku Foods East Africa Holdings (Kuku Foods), who will remain the local KFC franchisee. Completion of this transaction is subject to standard legal agreements and regulatory and competition authority approval.

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The restaurants, 22 in Kenya and 8 in Uganda, are located in shopping malls, city centre locations, and service stations. Kuku Foods plans to open its first KFC restaurant in Rwanda in 2019.

The 5 KFC restaurants operated by Kuku Foods Tanzania, the KFC franchisee in Tanzania, will not form part of the transaction.

The joint venture will enable a significant increase in the number of KFC restaurants in the portfolio in the coming years. It is envisaged that many of the new restaurants will be opened at Vivo Energy’s network of service stations across Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda, which leverages Vivo Energy’s retail footprint, with more countries to be considered in the future, based on market opportunities.

Commenting on the transaction, Christian Chammas, CEO of Vivo Energy, said: “We are delighted to be partnering with Kuku Foods to replicate the KFC joint venture model we pioneered in Botswana and Côte d’Ivoire. Kuku Foods shares our ambition to invest in order to grow the number of restaurants and give more African customers access to the internationally renowned KFC brand. This partnership further demonstrates our ambition to continue to offer more convenience to satisfy the evolving needs of our growing number of African customers.”

Derrick Van Houten, Group CEO of Kuku Foods and Principal Operator of the KFC franchises, added: “Having launched our first KFC in East Africa in 2011, we have successfully grown the business over the last eight years. We are delighted to announce this new partnership with Vivo Energy to continue this growth, bringing our world-renowned KFC products and experience to as many customers as possible.”

KFC Africa’s General Manager, Tarun Lal concluded: “We are delighted that KFC can leverage the joint venture entered into between Vivo Energy and Kuku Foods to continue to grow its network of KFC restaurants in Africa. We are confident that the KFC franchisee will continue to provide customers with a great KFC experience, driving improvements in customer
service and quality through its relationship with Vivo Energy.”



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Local Business

Rising Woman initiative returns for second edition

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Monitor Publications Limited’s (MPL) flagship brand Daily Monitor in partnership with dfcu Bank’s Women in Business Program and Uganda Investment Authority(UIA) have launched the second edition of the Rising Woman initiative.

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The Rising Woman initiative which was started last year under the theme ‘Taking your business ahead’ is meant to recognize, celebrate and promote a culture of mentorship among women in business in Uganda and targets Ugandan business women, Small scale investors, Entrepreneurs, Members of Uganda Women Entrepreneurs Association Limited (UWEAL), Members of Uganda Small Scale Industries Association (USSIA) and Uganda Manufacturers Association (UMA) members.

Speaking at the launch, dfcu Chief Executive Officer Mathias Katamba called the initiative a “…fundamental step on the path to creating a financially-enabling environment for female entrepreneurs.”

He went on to note that the bank has created programs and products which specifically address the financial needs of women across the country. “As a financial institution that believes in building thriving communities, dfcu embarked on a journey to creating an enabling environment for Small and Medium Women owned Enterprises starting in 2007, with the introduction of the Women in Business program. Our primary motivation is the fact that despite women making up over 52% of the population of Uganda, it is not reflected in the ratio of women who have access to financial services.”

“Through the program, we work with women in diverse ventures to turn business ideas into realities which in turn become vehicles for change in communities. With over 53 years of lending to SMEs, and at least 10 years running the WiB program, dfcu Bank understands the financial needs of women and goes ahead to provide tailor-made solutions for them,” Katamba added.

He also officially announced the call for business proposals through the bank’s official website which will begin the contention for the top 10 business ideas.

The proposal submission is already underway and will run up to 20th September 2019. The top 3 winners will walk away with Ugx 15 million, Ugx 10 million and Ugx 5 million respectively and the top 10 will take part in an all-expense study tour trip to Nairobi.



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