Ukulima application wins Orange Developer challenge

An agricultural solution, Ukulima, has emerged the top project out of 300 submitted to the Orange Developer Challenge, a platform that gives start-ups the opportunity to harness their skills and present to the rest of the world game changing ideas and products.

Ukulima provides farmers and users with information on produce market prices in different counties and enables them to correctly price their products and explore new markets, thus increasing profitability and avoiding exploitation from middlemen.

Julisha Mzazi and Tru Medic came in second and third place respectively. Julisha Mzazi allows parents to receive their children’s school results and other education related information through text messages while Tru Medic provides a simple verification process that allows users to determine if medical staff are qualified or not.

Users of Julisha Mzazi are also able to determine if health facilities are registered and have met all regulatory thresholds.

The top three applications were amongst 10 projects shortlisted for final judging. The other projects submitted were Blood Donation, mHealth, Pata License, Mtaani, Bidhaa Pepe, IsMoto and Patikana.

Judging criteria was based on best integration of mobile Application Program Interfaces (SMS, USSD and Operator billing), innovation, business value, positive social and environmental impact, creativity, clear and realistic objectives.

“The number of submissions we received in this competition is a clear indication of the increasing scope of technology innovation in Kenya. We received applications across different sectors including mobile finance, e-governance, lifestyle, e-commerce, education and transport,” said Orange Kenya CEO, Vincent Lobry.

The winning project Ukulima, was awarded KSh. 350,000 with the first runner-up, Julisha Mzazi receiving KSh. 100,000 and the second runner-up, Tru Medic KSh. 50,000.

Ukulima, developed by Maxwell Gakombe and his team, is in the running to win the global prize of 10,000 Euros (Kshs. 1,000,000), as it competes with the rest of the AMEA (African, Middle East and Asian Countries) region and France.

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