Like air or water, people tend to take data for granted. A gigabyte here or there generally doesn’t add up to a lot of money. But what if one gigabyte of data cost more than nine percent of a person’s average monthly income?
That’s the scenario in Africa where data optimization becomes critical, and it is why Timothy Kotin (pictured), co-founder and chief executive officer of SuperFluid Labs Ltd, is building his company around using data analysis to help enterprise clients deliver essential services, such as energy, in his country.
“Ninety percent of the data in the world was created in just the last two years,” Kotin said. “We help small businesses to unlock their potential using the power of data.”
Kotin spoke with John Furrier (@furrier), host of theCUBE, SiliconANGLE Media’s mobile livestreaming studio, at the The PeaceTech Lab in Washington, D.C. They discussed the PeaceTech Accelerator program, SuperFluid’s business model, and emerging technology trends in the African market.
Situated at the United States Institute of Peace, the accelerator was created to assist citizens in conflict zones and create stability. Kotin is part of an eight-week training and mentorship program supported by Amazon Web Services Inc. and C5 Capital Limited.
Booming mobile market
SuperFluid Labs is navigating a couple of important trends taking place in Africa today. The first involves a significant reliance on the mobile platform. Banks in Kenya have developed mobile-only lending and savings products, which resulted in growth from 40,000 customers in 2012 to more than 20 million today, according to Kotin.
“Mobile is huge in Africa,” Kotin said. “The most innovative businesses that we’ve seen have taken advantage of access to mobile phones to develop innovative business models.”
The other major trend is toward mass-scale adoption of new payment platforms, such as the blockchain and digital currencies. In Kenya, between 31 percent and 50 percent of the country’s gross domestic product is channeled through digital payment platforms.
“When you talk about payments and money transfer innovation, Africa is really the hotbed for this,” Kotin said. “It’s actually being used to deliver essential services in Africa.”
Watch the complete video interview below, and be sure to check out more of SiliconANGLE’s and theCUBE’s CUBE Conversations from the PeaceTech Accelerator and AWS Public Service office.