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Japheth Kagondu While Silicon Valley and Silicon Alley are now at an advanced stage in innovating lifestyle driven apps, Kenya’s innovations are driven and motivated by current challenges and seek to solve problems at a basic level.

The five-year road map was designed to create the infrastructure for a well-connected, informed country that would support tech innovations.Access to high speed Internet across the country has further contributed to Kenya’s success on the IT hubs front.Other factors that have propelled Kenya’s innovation revolution forward include: 1.I wrote this article originally for the Wall Street Journal I’m privileged to have travelled extensively in my life; half the time with just a backpack.My thirst for knowledge as an entrepreneur and an investor has exposed me to diverse startup environments across Africa, America and Europe.

Like all techies, I’ve been especially fascinated and inspired by Silicon Valley, which has been spotlighted for its strong appreciation and financial backing of IT Startups.But in Africa and especially Kenya, IT has come a long way in a short time because of the practical solutions it’s offering to basic needs.This vibrant tech and innovation friendly environment has drawn in multinationals like IBMand PHILLIPS, to set up shop in Nairobi, Kenya’s capital city.Consequently tech startups here have been trying to make a name for themselves as the next big thing Unfortunately about 60 % of small and medium-sized business in Kenya fail within the first few months; my own personal experience with failed IT businesses revealed a gaping need to nurture and mentor tech startup’s in Kenya.This was the reason I started Nailab, a startup incubator.Unlike the Silicon Valley and Silicon Alley, which have perfected and entrenched their startup backing for over a decade, the Kenyan tech hubs have had to play catch up in less than five years.