Ronald Kimani is the Head of Business at Silicon Solutions Limited, a content service provider of Bulk SMS, SMS shortcodes, USSD, mobile payment integration and mobile app technology solutions.
Mr Kimani gave an insight into his entrepreneurship journey and offered some valuable tips for success.
- Biggest milestone: In 2017 the business created a mobile raffle gaming system. Last year it created the first ever mobile virtual scratch card games. These two creations became unrivaled pioneer products of their kind in the Kenyan gaming industry. Currently, we are in the process of creating a sports betting service under our brand Spotika. These milestones have taught me that people don’t buy the ‘what’ or the ‘how’ in your products or services. They buy the ‘why’.
- Building a successful career: My secret is the unquenchable thirst for information. I traverse objectively on the web, read widely on the future of mobile technologies and position the business for the opportunities that lie ahead.
- Making it in life: You need to identify and focus on your strengths, and then get like-minded partners. Many Kenyans go wrong by trying to juggle all the ingredients of success and the elements of a good business on their own.
- Biggest money mistake: I once invested a lot of my savings in the packaging industry, which I had very little knowledge about and ended up with huge losses. I learnt that before you invest in any business, you must acquire an in-depth understanding of the field. You must also get mentors who will help you merge the knowledge you acquire with your start-up or investment.
- If I could go back in time: I would pick industry mentors early enough. That way, I would avoid a lot of the start-up mistakes I made when I started my entrepreneurship journey. It is better to use other people’s experiences to shorten the learning curve.
- Saving method: I save through short-term investments like money market funds and high-yield savings accounts. Previously, I had tried to invest through life and education policies. The problem with these was that they tended to lock money for a long period of time. They also had stiff penalties if one is unable to keep up with the premiums.
- Entrepreneurship versus employment: I am an advocate for entrepreneurship. But unlike employment, entrepreneurship has no income guarantee. You must stay on your toes at all time, and consistently develop need-based solutions.
- My parting shot: In business, your ability to collaborate with others – especially on areas that are not your strongholds – will determine how far you go in life and how successful you become. Do not compare yourself to others. Always remember that it is harder to maintain character when at height of your career or when money streams in.
-Courtesy/ Saturday Magazine