Live Blog: GESCI-AKE Showcase 6 Dec ’16!

We are live from Nairobi :). Welcome!


Our objectives for today:


Objectives for the day

With the help of guests and friends of AKE


Introducing Hera of Nangwe (trailer and game)

A trailer of Hera and how it was made. We saw interesting characters! A young woman, her mother and some of her people. There was an intriguing tree and the backgrounds we got a glimpse to see really worked as teasers.

Is the video on line people asked?

Introducing Sponsa (trailer)

What an improved version! Sponsa (The Sponsor web animation series) drew a lot of smiles and laughs from the audience here at the Golden Tulip Hotel. Sponsa is set up in an urban environment and the characters talk in nice mixture of local languages and English.

Welcome to AKE – Fostering Local Culture in Creative Industry Start-Ups by Jerome Morrissey

Jerome reminds us that:

Youth unemployment is a central challenge to address for Africa and AKE is working on skills that could help African youth (and others) to marry their potential with technology. We need TECHNOLOGY based SKILLS, they are important for the future of Africa and its youth and that is at the center of AKE program

We also need new connections, new forms of learning and new spaces to develop new skills. All these need to be tight to entrepreneurial aspects so that we can secure the future. The way jobs are being made and created is changing. There would not be any factories anymore. To start new ventures, that is to be an entrepreneur you need to practice, you do not learn it from a book. You practice until you get it right. It is a learning process.

Today is about bearing on mind those facts of life we just talked about.What can we do to create a model for skills development that is real, tight to practice?

The AKE program will be extended until JUNE so we can help these start-ups. By next June we want to have a model that makes sense.

Why we concentrate on the creative arts? It is an obvious industry for Kenya but we are only getting it right now. We have a visitor from Nigeria. Nigerians have shown us the way, we consume all the time Nigerian content. Why Nigerians are not consuming Kenyan content? Because it does not exists, it is not visible. We need to be there!

Our model for creating skills that combine technology with Youth potentials however should be generic, and should be applicable to other areas.

Visitor comment (Abu Bahka (? check name):

Technology is an opportunity! We can create wealth in Africa, movies, games… we can create jobs for ourselves and our communities.

Jane Muchiri from the ICT ministry in Kenya:

“Probably is about resistance to change, and people take time to adapt. We of course have sustainable efforts in the ministry. Our curriculum development is working on that. We have seen that the technology literacy program may seems like a drop in the ocean but it is a starting point. Maybe we see the fruits in a few years? We have issues with connectivity, but we are working on them.”


Mary:  is time to see what models we need! She reminds us that the ministry’s effort is not a small drop, but a massive one. These are exciting times. We need robust models that can contribute to the drops in the ocean.

Short intro to the insights from the LL research and the emerging AKE model:




Insights from the action research

Mary asks what expectations do AKE participants have?

We are looking forward to meet partners, get to showcase what we have been doing and show what we can do in 2017.

We are a looking forward to learn says Mary. we need critical support

Showcase! Participants present their projects and pitch them to attendants at their allocated areas.

Visit the spots and get to know the 7 exciting ventures that AKE has created.


Verbhouse showcasing their ideas


Artari kreations pitching their sauti database


Tripeltouch does DJ-ing


Cristal Quad Illustrations

Showcase on the stage


  • Makossiri Faith (musician) and Reuben Besa (Music Producer) showcase a track of the album the Dreamer.
  • Kevin Abuto (producer) showcases sound production work done for different clients
  • Andika Wilson (producer) showcasing sound production work done for different clients.


Buffet at the 1ST floor

Guest commentary: Welcome to the world of entrepreneurship! Few lessons

By Simunza Muyangana (Bongo Hive Founder)

In Zambia we used to think that is the only way to make money is to dig copper. But we have come to realize that by solving our people’s frustrations we can also do other business. It will pay back.

My first client taught me my first big lesson:

“Do not make it hard for me to pay you”

You have decided to work around creativity. You talk passionately about what you do and the services you offer. If you have a product is easy (lets say you sell milk) But with a service you need to be in consistent communication with your client.

PAY ATTENTION! Play close attention to what the client wants. Why they are paying us? We need them to understand why they will pay you.

It was interesting to hear for example in Artaris creation’s project how they are listening to possible customers. Be open to what value addition you can provide! Growth?

Always deliver! Lets be the generation that change the old ways of thinking: creatives are always late, NO: be on time. Deliver on time because your clients have deadlines.

You do not want the tax authorities to come knock your door. If you start day one with that discipline and take care of your paper work you will thank yourself down the road. It gives you longevity.

Do not forget the boring stuff! Paper work, invoices, taxes, etc.

I Welcome you to the world of entrepreneurs! It is hard, but it is rewarding. And probably the most relevant route for us in Africa, since the so called “jobs out there” that some people talk about, they do not necessarily exist.

Workshops of co-learning – Participant-Driven themes

Mary: What stands out? We mapped together before lunch some of the themes you consider the most important ones when setting up your business. Almost 18 give highest priority to business models. This is the planning you need to have! Creative needs to think about all aspects, including  this. Second marketing and outreach! and third Intellectual Property. Why culture did not got so many votes?

Lucy: perhaps lack of instructions. It is a key issue.

xx: Well, it is also about global competition

Abu Backa: Thinking about culture… We have problems in Africa that we can provide solutions in Africa. Take the example of money transfer with mobile phones. We have opportunities to solve our local problems. To be successful in that, we need business models. Our realities, we need to make them visible.

Silvester: The way I see, yes we can be driven by culture, but there needs to be a business opportunity first. We can not only do things for ourselves. The discussion needs to happen in that area of business opportunities, which we can do then of course with a culture drive.


working together in groups

“Passing out parade”

Certificates are given. We are so proud ❤

Check more coverage on Facebook: and on tweeter



Report from the field: 7 new creative ventures!

As part of AKE program, participants have developed 7 new creative ventures and small start-ups. They are all now in the Kenyan government’s registrar of companies and therefore are all official legal business entities. During the last phase of the program, the AKE lab will work as creative incubator and help them develop their business plan and activities.

During the past days I have had the fortune to follow some of their work and learn about their ideas here at the AKE hub in Nairobi. It is interesting to see how much the teams have grown and what breath of ideas they are working with. All the ventures are based on strong team work, except for Makossiri’s who is a solo venture based on her artistic image is any way based on collaboration with other artists. All of them aim to offer professional services that could help grow the creative industry. Some of them like Artari and VerbHouse have already concrete product development projects. Many of them like Kiwo films have done or will be doing commission for big names.


AKE creative ventures

While there is still work to do to fine tune the business plans and models and develop how they communicate their ideas, this is no doubt  a big step and a very concrete result of AKE work.

Through conversations, some Finnish chocolate and joint brainstorming,  we have draft the following preliminary presentation texts which they will be using in the up coming showcase next week. Let me introduce you to this 7 promising ventures:

Artari Kreations and their SAUTI product

SAUTI, an online voice audition and sound database offering the most complete sound and voice resource in Africa (website and web app). We connect the creative industry with the best samples, by the best talents aiming to be the “Getty Images” for African sound and voices. SAUTI is designed and developed by Artari kreations an African techno-artistic startup company offering a wide range of design and development services.

Kiwo films

Kiwo films produces video, documentaries, commercials as well as music and soundscapes for spaces and environments. We are also well versed in photography and on- location sound recording. We aim to be the best and number one operator and producer of premium Local Cinematography. KIWO films has worked for brands as BBC, UPS Parcel service, Vice Media, Scanad Group, Comic Relief and Media Hub Africa. The company has a multifaceted team talented in creative arts.

Makossiri Enterprises

Makossiri is an emerging African singer and creative entrepreneur. Makossiri Enterprises brings Makossiri’s music, fashion and stories to different channels. We combine creative technology and artistic self-expression to the organization of events and live performances where fashion and music intertwine.

 For doing this Makossiri works with digital artists, musicians and fashion designers to bring you African stories with a global touch.

Pamoja Gamers

Pamoja gamers designs and develops technologies that provide solutions for real problems in the real world with a playful attitude.  Our team has expertise in mobile application, web and game development as well as graphic design. We specialize in solutions for the african educational sector, the business sector and we also provide services for other creatives.

VerbHouse and their Mbulu product

Mbulu is a subscription based online streaming channel for video on demand. Mbulu features African short films, documentaries, music, animation and games that are suitable for streaming on small devices like mobile phones or tablets. We aim to create a market and an audience for African stories that can transcend borders. Mbulu is being designed and developed by Verb House a creative entertainment company offering a wide range of audiovisual services.


Triple touch is an innovative Kenyan youth led business. We offer public address systems, Disc Jockeying, audio/visual production and event management services. Our mission is to provide lasting solutions to existing societal problems.

Crystal Quad

Our specialty is in creating advertisements and marketing strategies using games and mobile applications, animation and sound design skills.



AKE participant working on her start-up marketing material at the AKE hub


Creative team work at the AKE lab





AKE Showcase on 6.12.16


The African Knowledge Exchange (AKE) Creative Media Venture program is organizing a Project Showcase and Start-Up launch. The event serves also as the graduation ceremony for the participants

The event  will take place on December 6th 2016, from 10:00am to 4:30pm at the Golden Tulip Hotel in Westlands, Nairobi. We will be doing a live blog of the event, so stay tuned!