25th October 2015 was an exhilarating day for #energycommunityKE. We hosted Sumayya Hassan-Athmani, CEO of National Oil Corporation of Kenya (NOCK), a public sector organisation and Edward Koranteng, Group Manager - Energy, Oil & Gas at Chase Bank Kenya Ltd, a leading SME bank in Kenya. The two were principal guests to the second Negawatt Challenge meetup, of Phase II. The audience comprised of a rich blend of representatives from both the private and public sector. It was an exceptional opportunity for those eager to explore opportunities in energy as well as gain some knowledge on how to work with the public sector.
The speakers urged techies not to be apprehensive about working with government. Techies shy away from government bureaucracy, subsequently missing out on opportunities to innovate and make an impact. In line with this, Mrs. Summaya affirmed that NOCK is keen to work with techies to ensure efficiency in internal operations as well as service delivery. Mrs Summaya went on to challenge techies in the room with the question:
“What is our ‘Uber’? The ‘Uber’ for the energy sector”, she echoed.
She pointed out that a huge opportunity lied in tracking of LPG gas cylinders as well as automating their distribution and delivery.
Chase Bank is actively supporting new technologies in energy, especially in the area of solar. Mr. Koranteng conveyed,
“…Its all about ingenuity; Chase Bank is ready to support you by availing the necessary funds. Our doors are open for you, we believe in your passion.”
We also watched an inspiring video (see below) about a Malawian boy who at the age of 14 built an electricity-producing windmill from spare parts and scrap, guided by a book he had borrowed from a library.
The discussion sparked a lively discussion among those in attendance, while those who were not able to attend actively engaged on twitter - #energycommunityKE was actually a top trend. That just attests how captivating the session was!
Mrs. Summaya closed off by urging techies to innovate and disrupt: “Energy companies were initially resistant to change, but this is changing, they have learnt the aphorism: ‘Innovate or die’.”