At the age of 32, Jonathan Misoi is one of the budding entrepreneurs in Eldoret and the neighbouring counties in a field that has made him an inspiration and role model to many young people.
Misoi who grew up in a poor background at Chepykwai village in Uasin Gishu, lost both parents early in and has literally hassled to attain his goal.
He went to Chepykway primary school where he passed his exams and qualified to join Kapsabet boys High school where his elder brother Richard Misoi paid for his fees.
His hard work paid of and he currently holds a Master's degree in Computer Science (Web Information Systems) from Vrije University Brussels, Belgium and a BSc. in Information Sciences (Information Technology) from Moi University
He is already an Information Communication and Technology (ICT) guru and one of the youngest investors in Eldoret who has turned his wealth of expertise in ICT into a business that he is using to transform the lives of many youth
The founder and CEO of DigiTalk Technologies Ltd a consultancy company involved in providing ICT solutions, fibre optics training, empowering and mentoring youths to pursue ICT careers and businesses in Kenya is a trail blazer in the region.
The firm based at Mopen House, is already at millions of shillings and Misoi says nothing will prevent him from emulating billionaire Bill Gates, the founder and owner of Microsoft, one of the world’s largest computer companies.
From his talk, he depicts a rare passion for the ICT business which he believes is key in contributing to the realisation of Vision 2030.
“Many Kenyan youth have dreams which they fail to turn into reality. I am driven by the passion to use ICT as a serious business which has already transformed my own life and now I want to contribute to a Kenya where youth will use technology to succeed in life”, says Misoi who admits that the business makes good money.
To spread his ICT gospel and encourage the youth Misoi is now an avid motivational speaker at various forums, schools and colleges where he teaches the youth and other Kenyans on how to turn ICT knowledge into profit making business.
“The world is radically being transformed into a connected world. The digital revolution requires the need for digital inclusion and we cannot afford to lag behind. My fellow youth have to utilize the available opportunities in ICT to transform them into great businesses and carriers,” Misoi said.
To put his experience and thoughts on paper, Misoi has published his first book known as the “ICT CAKE” which he hopes will positively influence the youth to venture into the ICT industry.The book was launched by Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago last week.
The compares ICT to a big cake from which everyone can get a share. He analyses four areas through which ICT can provide opportunities to Kenyans, especially the youths. The book acts as a career guide to those keen on pursuing ICT or taking it up as a business. It covers education, ICT careers, ICT and entrepreneurship and web technologies.
Misoi says there is little well packaged ICT information available especially for youths in rural areas, those out of high school and those already undertaking courses leading to ICT careers.
“My book comes at an opportune time to excite and provide direction on what areas lie ahead for the youths wishing to pursue this path,” he says adding that the book will help the young people view ICT as an alternative means for career development and an opportunity to develop successful business enterprises.
The fibre optics training is the latest technology in ICT. This is an expensive course which costs more than Sh80,000 for three days in Nairobi but he charges less in Eldoret which has attracted large numbers students.
Currently he trains averagely ten students per week charging them averagely Sh13,000 each. The firm has extended on the job training to experts in universities, government departments and other private institutions.
One his students Abraham Kutto who is studying fibre optics says he was motivated to pursue the training after attending one of Misoi's motivational talks.
"His struggles and determination are worth emulating. I enjoy the training at his college and my plan is to go into a related carrier and business,"said Kutto.
Kutto says he believes the course will add value to his life as he plans to follow up the course to higher levels of training.
"From what Misoi has achieved its shows that its possible for other young people to make it in life in whatever carriers or businesses they are pursuing,"said Kutto.
Misoi says dealing in the ICT field has its many challenges. “It’s a very volatile, delicate and dangerous carrier. You are relevant one time and within six month you are obsolete because technology changes very fast,” said Misoi. The remedy he says is continuous training for one to remain relevant and adapt to changes in the industry.
He says Kenya is a leading nation in technological development and ICT based projects like Konza City will give the country an advantage in the region.
“We are moving towards a country where ordinary people should be able to create local solutions using technology to solve local problems,” says Misoi. For example he says all farmers in the country will in the near future require to use technology to access real time information on issues like markets and weather.
He says the county governments provide many opportunities for those with ICT skills Misoi hence the need for the youth and companies to strategically place themselves ready to benefit from the available opportunities.
“County government’s will have to ensure that people are empowered with all kinds of information and that will only be done through application of latest technology. Information will thus be a great business,” says Misoi who is already playing a role in setting up Uasin Gishu County to rip from opportunities in ICT development.
Misoi says ICT development is a whole revolution that will transform economies across the globe and Kenyans cannot afford to be left behind.
For his efforts Misoi was recognized by the United Nations IT arm and was among two Kenyans selected to attend a global conference on ICT in Hong Kong where he rubbed shoulders with the world’s top ICT experts.
“We were asked to go back to our countries and implement projects in ICT which would help to transform the youth and from there I have never looked back,” says Misoi.
He is also the ITU youth Fellow 2006 (Hong Kong) and former vice president of Youth Council in ICT within the East African Community countries. He is widely traveled and involved in several ICT related projects across the world.
Misoi says access to computers and related applications in Kenya is very high but there are still many untapped opportunities.
“We only need to get our youth to look at ICT and related programmes as a serious business. It’s not just the business of selling computers and accessories but there are many other ways to use ICT as a carrier and a business through which may jobs can also be created,” he said.
Misoi says youth in the country should focus and strive to get a bite from the big ICT Cake.