Where Africa and Technology Collide!

True African: True African Digerati

It’s funny how connections work. I got an email from a gentleman by the name of Eric Kamau while I was at this weekends RVA Centennial celebration in Kijabe. He’s the head of True African, a web/mobile company out of Uganda. The timing was surprising because Eric is an RVA Alumni as well. So, from the beginning we had two connections: RVA and technology (add in nyama choma if you like as well).

True AfricanTrue African was the first company in Uganda to offer downloadable music via their website. Much like iTunes, Eric has set up relationships with all of the artists – licensing the music. A very forward-thinking and long-term position.

However, True African was built on providing value added services to mobile phone users. They offer a free SMS service on their website that thas attracted over 700k users. True african also offers downloadable ringtones and logos (icons). They have also pioneered mobile based banking through direct partnerships with local banks.

There was a lot more ground covered than just what True African is about, or what I’m doing with Zangu. Mobile banking kept popping it’s head up, as it did when Nicholas and I met last week. It’s really an area that has a huge need. Now, mind you we’re not talking about just general banking online or mobile phone, we’re talking about micro-banking, micro-credit and micro-enterprise support. That’s where the long-tail is.


  1. Dear whiteafrica,
    I so very much enjoy your blogs and make me year for similar developments here in Ethiopia. my former school is celebrating its 60 somethng anniverssary and there is wide specualation that it could close but former students are trying to have one memorial bash. I was wondering if yu ever passed by Ethiopian and whta your impressions are.

  2. Menyelenal, I actually have been through Addis Ababa, it was when I was much younger though. I spent a day there in transit from Khartoum to Nairobi. I have to say that I was amazed by how green it was – I didn’t expect that. The communists were still in power and their statues were up all over the place still. The people were very friendly though, and I always thought it would be a good place to get back to. Add on top of that the fact that Ethiopian food is my favorite, it’s just a good place to go. 🙂

    Good luck with keeping the school open!

  3. thanks for the work u r doing.

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