Kenya’s new scratch card buying service dubbed Mdundo was featured on Click, BBC’s flagship TV show, for introducing innovative means of selling music downloads in Africa.
Hailed for giving artists more control over the distribution of their own music, Mdundo allows users to download music using scratch cards that bear special codes, which allow users to download certain number of tracks from a database onto their phones.
“Some of the simple technologies in Kenya, while effective, are designed to address problems that are only really found in the developing world. But one place in Kenya – known as “88mph” – has greater high-tech aspirations,” BBC Click’s Spencer Kelly reports.
Mdundo is funded and mentored by Africa’s first accelerator program 88mph, in partnership with Google for Entrepreneurs. The four-minuteTV clip explores Kenya’s newest co-working space 88mph Garage Nairobi, and some of the revolutionary innovations its houses, supports and invests in targeting feature phone users in East Africa.
Tackling the question of whether such innovations attract profits at all, 88mph program manager Nikolai Barnwell explains that there are certain times in history that disruptive opportunities present themselves, and one such opportunity is the visible explosion of mobile users in Africa.
“The English speaking population in East Africa alone is larger than in the US and you has a fast growing middle class,” Barnwell adds.
Mdundo will eliminate telecoms and mobile operators who keep 85- to 90 percent of music sales and already has 30 Kenyan artists offering their music for sale.