The dynamics of entrepreneurship in ICT: case of mobile phones downstream services in Kenya
AbstractThe research paper explores the extent to which mobile phones downstreamservices, defined here as those provided using the existing connectivity, aregenerating opportunities for entrepreneurship development in Kenya. Afteridentifying the services of mobile payphones, money transfer and phone repair,the paper analyses the micro-enterprises providing them and their contributionto income and employment creation. It shows that majority of the enterprisesproviding the services are survivalists and they are characterised by minimalbarriers to entry and therefore stiff competition. Those in growth-orientedcategory are characterised by barriers to entry and specialisation. Theseenterprises have made a notable contribution to the concerned households andthe economy in form of employment opportunities, income generation andlinkage with other sectors. They directly supported over 25,000 households inaddition to the extra staff employed in them. Across the board the incomes ofthe operators improved after engaging in the enterprises. The enterprises alsocreated opportunities for women, youth, people with disabilities and those withlow or no education. To the economy, payphones have contributed toincreasing the mobile phones coverage to 75% of the country; money transferservices have provided cheaper financial transactions and means of sendingemergency funds; while repair services have enabled low income earners toremain connected even when they could not afford to buy new phones. Thepaper therefore concludes that mobile phones downstream services havegenerated entrepreneurial opportunities to many as well as contributingpositively to the goal of fighting poverty.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by International Institute of Social Studies of Erasmus University (ISS), The Hague in its series ISS Working Papers - General Series with number 1765018727.
Date of creation: 01 Jan 2009
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employment; enterprises; mobile phones downstream services; income and the poor.;
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