Facebook connects with developers and top Kenyan female tech influencers
Facebook highlighted its commitment to supporting Africa’s rapidly growing technology startup scene, and developing diverse, creative talent, by hosting a Women in Tech event and a Developer Circles Masterclass in Nairobi, Kenya this week. The events formed part of a week-long programme Facebook ran as part of its commit to the continent, and its sponsorship of TechCrunch's Startup Battlefield Africa 2017.
Bringing together the Developer Circle in Nairobi for an evening of networking, Facebook also hosted a Developer Masterclass with 25 Developer Circle leads from across Africa, in an intensive, three-day training course. Exploring Facebook technologies and platform products aimed at enhancing the ecosystem, both events bought together developers to to connect, share ideas, learn, and collaborate.
“We want to use our technology and platforms to work with people become entrepreneurs and to build products that can help engage and empower communities,” said Emeka Afigbo, Facebook's Head of Platform Partnerships for Middle East and Africa. “Events like the Platform meetup are examples of activities we’re doing on the ground to empower startups and developers to take their businesses to the next level.”
The Women in Tech event was designed to engage with influential women working in Nairobi's technology ecosystem and to share Facebook's mission on diversity. Facebook's first female-focused developer event in Kenya aimed to engage women tech developers, founders, engineers, and academics.
“We are passionate about diversity in our business, we believe it's the key to unlocking creative thinking and prosperity for all,” said Nunu Ntshingila, Regional Director, Facebook Africa. “Women make up to over a half of the population, yet they are under-represented in technology and business and events like this are about changing that picture.”
The event included a panel discussion with Angela Muigai-BRCK, Head of product for BRCK; Teresa Mbagaya, Microsoft’s education lead in East and Southern Africa; and Shikoh Gitau, head of products innovation at Safaricom. They discussed the growth of Kenya’s tech ecosystem and offered their advice for other women seeking to enter a career in technology.