A Young Malawian IT Entrepreneur Shortlisted for 2016 Global Innovation Award


Angle Dimension, a growing local IT venture, is pleased that its representative, Henry Sauzande, has made it to the 2016 GIST (Global Innovation through Science and Technology) Technology Idea (Tech-I) Competition semifinals. Henry is among the 102 selected semifinalists that represent 51 emerging economies worldwide. The selection follows applications review by scientific, technical, regional, innovation, and entrepreneurship experts from around the world.

In an interview with Henry, visibly trying to hide his joy with a simple smile, he mentions that he entered the 2016 GIST Tech-I competition with a resource-constraints friendly banking solution for microfinance institutions(MFIs) and SACCOs. The software solution not only enables MFIs and SACCOs to manage their customer transactions, loan portfolios, etc., but also simplifies the payment transactions by integrating with existing platforms that include banks and mobile money services such as Airtel Money and TNM Mpamba. Furthermore, this microfinance solution is cloud-based and therefore allows the MFIs and SACCOs to automate their business operations without thinking of acquiring the cost prohibitive infrastructure and establishing an in-house IT support team.

Henry said he recognizes the strides made in infrastructure development in Malawi that enhances the marketability of manufactured goods globally. He however believes that Malawi has enough talent and skills to export business and professional services that are less dependent on heavy infrastructure. He cites this MFI solution as an example of IT enabled service that promises to appeal to similar markets in developing countries, and increase the country’s export base.
The next phase after this semifinal selection is public voting from which 30 finalists will be picked to pitch their ventures to a global audience in Silicon Valley, California which is home to hundreds of start-up and global technology companies. This voting phase provides an opportunity for Malawi to be represented in the finals.  Henry is inviting all Malawians to show their support by voting for him  at http://www.gistnetwork.org/content/tech-i-semi-finalists-voting.

The annual GIST Tech-I competition is implemented by The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and led by the U.S. Department of State. The competition seeks to empower innovators in 135 emerging economies to transform their communities. It enables promising science and technology entrepreneurs launch or grow a business through mentorship, training, international visibility, and seed capital prizes. Malawi is no stranger to success in this competition. Two Malawians have in the past gone ahead to win the award. Samson Fiado who developed an accounting software for small medium enterprises won the 2015 GIST Tech-I award while Mixon Faluweki with his innovative Padoko charger which allows people to charge their cell phones, power their radios or MP3 players and also recharge their torches/ lamps using bicycle received the 2014 GIST Tech-I award.

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