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Gebeya: Shaping A Robust African Software Industry



In this technology driven world, Africa is still recording low iGDP compared to its neighbouring continents. Funding, infrastructure, electricity and IT literacy are among the key challenges hampering ICT development in Africa. Currently, only one percent of African children leave schools with basic coding skills yet Africa's population has been increasing at an average of 2.5% in the last five years. Africa will also have the largest working population by 2040. With this forecast, Africa's labour force ought to be well equipped to support and nurture the effective exploitation of ICT to benefit development.

Gebeya, a pan african software development and training company just hosted their first graduation ceremony. On May 20th, 2017, after 6 months of intensive and hands-on training, Gebeya celebrated the graduation of its first batch of highly competent software developers and engineers. Last year in September 2016, Gebeya launched one of Africa's premier IT training Academies in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to take on the challenge of getting more Africa involved in the global IT economy. The academy accepted 70 of the most talented individuals across the continent after a thorough and competitive round of applications and interviews. Gebeya plans to expand across Africa, helping 5000 trainees graduate in the next 5 years.

The startup focuses on three cornerstones; training, marketplace, and incubation. Gebeya aims to increase the number of skilled IT professionals in the continent by taking IT enthusiasts through their advanced training programs, connecting them with businesses and entrepreneurs on demand and incubating innovative startups in Africa in order to propel growth within the sector and economy at large. The startup has partnered with institutions such as Tezza - a leading quality assurance, Software Testing and custom Software development company in Africa and Kad ICT Hub -a hub for entrepreneurs, software engineers and developers in Nigeria, to amplify their efforts in increasing digital literacy within the continent.

Gebeya believes that every qualified individual deserves the chance at a better education.They work hard to make financial aid available to increase inclusivity in education. True to its beliefs, the startup offers women applicants automatic scholarships upon acceptance so as to cultivate gender inclusivity within IT industry. Graduate trainees such as Ismael Kedir, who, at 15 years of age, is Gebeya's youngest talent, was able to build a website for a local Ethiopian restaurant called Opium Addis in just one week. He was only judged by his skills and not age.

Gebeya co-founders, Amadou Daffe - CEO/ Co-founder and Hiruy Amanuel, launched Gebeya to increase the availability of skilled labour on demand and develop affordable software solutions that will enable Africa to competitively participate in the global digital economy. This has seen startups such as Check On Me leverage on world class professionals on demand to enable them to scale fast and reduce costs. Currently, Gebeya has offices in Ethiopia and Kenya focusing on the East African market and are planning to expand to 10 countries across Africa in the next five years to amplify their current efforts.

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Influencer Union? The Next Labor Rights Battle May Be For Social Media Creators

With the end of the Hollywood writers and actors strikes, the creator economy is the next frontier for organized labor.

​photograph of a smartphone on a selfie stick

Smartphone on a selfie stick

Steve Gale/Unsplash
David Craig and Stuart Cunningham

Hollywood writers and actors recently proved that they could go toe-to-toe with powerful media conglomerates. After going on strike in the summer of 2023, they secured better pay, more transparency from streaming services and safeguards from having their work exploited or replaced by artificial intelligence.

But the future of entertainment extends well beyond Hollywood. Social media creators – otherwise known as influencers, YouTubers, TikTokers, vloggers and live streamers – entertain and inform a vast portion of the planet.

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For the past decade, we’ve mapped the contours and dimensions of the global social media entertainment industry. Unlike their Hollywood counterparts, these creators struggle to be seen as entertainers worthy of basic labor protections.

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