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Kenya gives rousing response to Smart SMB Summit & Awards 


The Kenya edition of Smart SMB Summit & Awards held at the Crowne Plaza in Nairobi on the 23rd of May saw an impressive turnout of over 300 decision makers from the mid-market in attendance. The event was held under the theme ‘ Redefining Digital and Business Transformation’ and focused on pivotal topics that are integral to the adoption of digital transformation. The sponsors of the event included Gold sponsors Redington Kenya Ltd, Silver sponsor Veritas Exhibition partners Unify,, MicroStrategy and SAS as well as Media partners Metropol TV and Mediatech.

Smart SMB Summit & Awards is held in multiple countries of GCC and the Kenya edition was the first edition held outside the GCC. The event series is organized by Business Media International, the publishers of Smart SMB Magazine. 

The platform has been successful in taking the narrative of digital and business transformation forward to the mid-market in different markets. Likewise, the intent of the Kenya edition of the event was to to advance awareness of how to to take strategic approaches to digital transformation in organizations. The attendees had the opportunity to listen in to interact with industry experts  who presented keynotes and were part of panel discussions at the event.

The first keynote of the day was presented by Paul van der Linde, Partner Manager, Global Alliances at MicroStrategy who spoke at length on the Key Pivots of Digital Transformation and highlighted the role that HyperIntelligence, an enterprise analytics tool that works seamlessly across web-based content and through your mobile device to bring answers to people through relevant, context-based analytics.

Presenting the second keynote of the day, Vincent Nuwamanya, Technical Pre-sales Consultant at Veritas Technologies LLC shared insights on how ‘Data protection is key to digital transformation’.

James Siku Ojwang, Head of ICT & Ag Head of Outreach at the Aga Khan Hospital, Mombasa, Kenya gave an exhaustive presentation on the role of AI and IoT in enabling digital transformation with examples of use cases for IoT from healthcare.

Clare Ward, CIO of Kenya Airlines presented an insightful presentation on ‘Opportunities to exploit Data Analytics’ and how the Airlines operations is streamlined using Analytics to plan, visualize and predict in parallel.

Among the three panel discussions of the day, the first panel discussion discussed at length the ‘Outlook for digital transformation in the region’s mid-market’ with the panelists including Oscar Corriea, Director of Technology, Maarifa Education, Stanley Chege, CIO, Madison Group, Kenya, James Siku, Head of ICT, Aga Khan Hospital Mombasa and Vincent Milewa,Territory Manager - Africa (East and West), Unify. 

The second panel discussion discussed the ‘Role of Fintech in enabling digital economy’ and went into details fo how Fintech is growing at an accelerated pace in the country in light of mobile payments, banking and savings, growth of alternative funding platforms etc. the participants in this panel discussion included Faisal Omar, Founder & Director, FMO Consulting, Stanley Chege, CIO, Madison Group, Patrick Kamanu, Operations, M Oriental Bank, Kevin Amateshe, Digital Lead East Africa, Sanofi and Francis Kamuyu, Head of IT at Multichoice Kenya.

The final panel discussion of the day discussed ‘Facilitating Digital Transformation in key verticals’ and participants included Clare Ward, CIO, Kenya Airways; Thomas Gachie, Chief operating officer, Centric Air Ambulance Ltd.; Tom Mboya Opiyo, Head of ICT at Unga Group; Emma Okere,Lead Data Scientist, Kenbright Actuarial & Financial Services Limited and Lawrence Lubanga, CTO, MTN Kenya. The panelists shared the dynamics of their verticals and  their status on adopting some digital transformation measures. 

Following the summit, the day’s agenda included an Awards Gala. Awards were presented for companies cross different verticals who have taken the lead in pioneering deployments of new technologies, thus transforming their Businesses. Awards were also presented to Technology companies who are playing a lead role in facilitating digital transformation deployments.


Winners list:

  1. Best Digital Transformation in Healthcare -Aga Khan Hospital Mombasa
  2. Best Digital Transformation in Hospitality -PrideInn Hotels & Investments Ltd
  3. Best Digital Transformation in Manufacturing- Unga Group
  4. Best Digital Transformation in Education- Longhorn Publishers Plc
  5. Best Digital Transformation in Banking - M Oriental Bank
  6. Best Digital Transformation in Insurance - Madison Group
  7. Best Digital Transformation in Financial Services- Branch International
  8. Best Digital Transformation in Aviation - Kenya Airlines
  9. Best Digital Transformation in Media - Metropol TV
  10. Telecom Solutions Provider of the Year - MTN Business Kenya
  11. VAD of the Year with Best digital Transformation Initiatives - Redington Kenya Ltd
  12. Cloud Computing Solutions Vendor of the Year - Oracle
  13. Storage Vendor of the Year - Veritas
  14. Networking Vendor of the Year - Cisco
  15. BI Software Vendor of the Year - MicroStrategy
  16. Vendor of the Year with Best Digital Transformation Focus - Unify
  17. CIO of the Year - George Njuguna, Group CIO, HF Group
  18. Digital Innovations in Client Services - AMREF Flying Doctors


















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