Buspreneur interview with Clinton Mutambo1
Clinton Mutambo is an experienced business developer with an unrivaled passion for Africa. It is his insatiable appetite for knowledge that almost got him banned from his high school computer lab.
- Who are you? Describe yourself in 3 sentences.
For starters, I’m an Afro-optimist and am driven by an insatiable hunger to contribute towards the continent’s development. From this perspective I see the internet and mobile technology as amazing tools through which the lives of millions of people can be positively impacted. I’ve had a string of entrepreneurial endeavors (a couple of glorious failures included), blogged for a leading African tech blog, and organized tech events to connect grassroots entrepreneurs.
- What do you expect from your participation on the bus?
Through StartupBus Africa, I’m looking to connect with amazing people. Such connections should lead to rich conversations and the sort of collaboration that future generations can look back on as the beginning of an amazing era.
- Why Africa? Why now?
Beyond hype and statistics, I doubt that there’s a continent as resilient as Africa. Millions of young people wake up each and every day with nothing but hope for a better future, often against daunting odds. As a young African myself, I see this every day. The time has come to transform this hope into reality and create the sort of value that creates jobs, overcomes inherent challenges and builds stronger communities. Africa can teach the world a lot about resilience and making the most of even the least, especially during these difficult economic times. Conversely, the continent can learn a great deal by deepening it’s collaboration with global peers.
- What is your area of expertise – mobile development, healthcare, or the energy sector? Please talk a little bit about how you gained this expertise…
I’m no expert in mobile, healthcare or energy sector. It is for this very reason that I’m excited about the contribution I can make to the team. My strength lies in business development, go to market strategies for Africa and marketing. Through my first company, which was a full service marketing agency, l worked with government departments and the private sector. I have a sufficient understanding of Africa’s mobile landscape and a sweet spot for sustainable energy solutions.
- Please share an idea for a technology (mobile, health, energy) that can solve a problem/s local to the South African region.
I’ve been thinking about an energy footprint platform that links people in the developed world to people in the developing world on a peer to peer basis. Such a platform could enable both parties to track their carbon footprints. For example, an individual could indicate the amount of gas, light bulbs and electricity they use and compare that to someone in a different environment. Each time they reduce their carbon footprint, corporate sponsors could reward them.
- 6. Everyone has a special story. What is yours?
I was once banned from my high school’s computer lab for “being there” in the first place. In all honesty l spent nearly all my time there! I’d be there soaking up as much information as I could about the world we live in. When my tutor found out, he tried to have me banned. The head of the computer lab came to my rescue and pleaded with him to let me have access, stating that I was doing “important work”. The tutor’s exact remark was, “Mr Mutambo here thinks he’s the webmaster of the school”.
- Are you sponsoring yourself or do you have sponsors? Please tell us about your sponsors…
Esaja.com (my startup) is sponsoring me.