Top 10 Episodes

Since launching in 2016, The East Africa Business Podcast has interviewed dozens of entrepreneurs and thought leaders operating in the region.

Below is a list of the most popular episodes:

🚑💨📱 Uber for ambulances. Why most of Africa doesn’t have 911 and how Flare solves this, with Caitlin Dolkart

There are some ideas that, when someone tells you about it, your first reaction is surprise that there even needs to be a business.

I had this reaction about Flare, which is improving how people get access to emergency care in Kenya. Described as “an Uber for ambulances” it is consolidating the 50 companies that exist in the country so that there is one place for patients to call to get fast emergency care.

🔢📈💳 Big Data Lending: unlocking commercial capital for Africa with Daniel Goldfarb from Lendable

It’s widely acknowledged that one of the biggest prohibitions to the development of East Africa is lack of capital.

Lendable are a technology enabled debt platform created to help non banking lenders scale. They use in-house software tools and algorithms to analyze loans and offer facilities that make sense for lenders based on their loan books.

📱🥕🚚 Why GetIt need to use Whatsapp to deliver food produce in Rwanda, with Lauren Russell

Fresh produce delivery has traditionally been an informal industry in Rwanda. Reliably ordering food isn’t really a thing and so after finishing a contract at the Nike Foundation, Lauren Russell decided to set up GetIt as a way for businesses and consumers to have an easy way of ordering food.

👩✈️🌍 Where does your hair come from? Importing human wigs and weaves with Gisela van Houcke from Zuri Lux Hair

One of the things I’ve found bewildering working in the region is the frequency with which my female friends change their hair style.

In this interview with Gisela we talk about the global supply chain for human hair which is honestly one of the most fascinating interviews and businesses on the podcast so far.

🗑️🐛💰 Treasure from trash: how The Recycler creates value (and maggots) from waste in the booming Dar es Salaam, with Matthew Haden

One of the byproducts of a country’s development is the amount of waste that is produced. As populations grow the number of, say, plastic bottles that are consumed also increases.

It’s costly both financially and environmentally to transfer these materials to dumpsite and Matthew from The Recycler wants to change this. We discuss why Tanzania is the prime location for this type of business, the applications of waste, and how he is growing maggots as a much more sustainable form of chicken feed.

🥡🏍️🇪🇹 How to run an online business in Ethiopia when the power goes out, with Feleg Tsegaye from Deliver Addis

When running an e-commerce company in most parts of the world, there are certain things you can take for granted. Namely that your customers can get on the internet in order to use your service.

In Ethiopia, this isn’t always the case.

📰🌍🤓 The Economist: how East Africa’s development compares with the rest of the continent, with Jonathan Rosenthal

In this episode I speak with Jonathan Rosenthal, the Africa Editor of The Economist.

Jonathan and I take a much broader look at Africa’s development through the lens of, say, government debt ratios and currency reserves. Whilst this might seem a bit lofty, I’d encourage you to stick with it.

🎮🤖💰 Video Games: Africa prepares for the $bn gaming market, with Nathan Masyuko from Ludique Works

Gaming is something that a lot of people may not consider as a business industry. I, for one, know or rather knew very little about it, though this interview with Nathan Masyuko from Ludique Works was one of the most insightful interviews I’ve ever had.

We speak about the international, multi-billion dollar business in video games and Africa’s place in it.

🛒🍅🚛 Big retail CEO Daniel Githua explains the important role of supermarkets formalising the East African economy

Some of the biggest and most visible players in any country are the supermarkets.

They employ thousands of people, have a wide geographic presence and interact with many aspects of the economy through supply chains and products sold. Tuskys is one of the biggest in Kenya, and East Africa, and in this episode I interview Daniel Githua the CEO.

*SPECIAL* Silicon Savannah: Business Lessons from East Africa Talk

A slightly different format for this episode – a recording of a talk that I gave on a recent trip back to London. There’s a general overview of business in the region, plus discussion of the following topics:

  • Some thoughts around how technology in the region is being adopted quicker, leapfrogging the developed world
  • How the education system means it can be difficult to hire in East Africa
  • And a discussion around the implications of Brexit and the Trump election on the region

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You can also head to the Show Notes page to see all episodes.