iZimbabwe goes live

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Umuntu Media’s iZimbabwe.co.zw portal is now officially live. The company is making good of its $1 million war chest to build local portals across the region and appears to be in a state of continuous improvement. iZimbabwe.co.zw has been launched concurrently with Botswana, bringing the number of portals under its wing to four.

As bandwidth costs  decline and availability continues to improve, Africa is the last frontier where content is concerned. The key challenges it presents in this regard are centred on its fragmented states and multitude of languages. As difficult as these might sound, the potential of commanding such a vast market seems too tempting to ignore as Microsoft’s MSN, Nasper’s News24, and Yahoo among others have indicated similar intentions. All this while Google has been launching classified sites and other platforms.

Umuntu MediaUmuntu Media is working with local reporters on ground and has already picked up 442 Facebook fans on the iZimbabwe portal while the Botswana one has 992. Umuntu CEO and founder Johan Nel explained the rationale behind the expansion: “The tremendous growth of iNamibia and iZambia from a standing start in January has taken us to the next evolutionary step, as we now launch iZimbabwe and iBotswana. According to CEO and Founder, Johan Nel “Now is an exciting time for Africa and also for Umuntu, which we can see in the uptake of our local content portals. We are looking forward to the next phase in which we will be aggressively rolling out seven more portals by April 2012.”

Johan went on to elaborate that the growth of the iPortal model has brought forward significant opportunities for his company. Umuntu is also working towards introducing a mobile platform under the name Mimiboard. Brian Herman of eVentures Africa fund, which poured in $1million series seed into the company had the following to say; “We started the Umuntu Media journey with Johan Nel about a year ago. It is unbelievable to experience what he and his team have achieved since then. With a firm belief in his dream and with tremendous drive and passion, Johan drives this media company towards a bright future. I’m convinced that Umuntu Media will become a major digital media player in Africa, offering African content and solutions for Africans and by Africans”.

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26 Comments

  1. Pindile Mhandu says:

    Zamibia, which country is that? lol

    1. Anonymous says:

      their facebook icon looks like the mali flag, wtf? 

  2. Anonymous says:

    These guys are a joke, i just went on the main site for Umuntu Media and guess what i am met with phpMyAdmin login page… seriously? really? this is the most exploited app in the history of the internet, wait till the Chinese kids gets wind of it. Try it and see for yourself http://www.umuntumedia.com/

    1. Aaaaaa says:

      i was hoping yu were wrong, but you are right, what a shame . . .:-(

  3. Great to see more and more amazing sites being produced on the Joomla Platform.

  4. In Zimbabwe, of course 🙂

  5. Johan Nel says:

    Thanks again for the coverage on TechZim – Really appreciate
    it. We were so busy building world class portals that we haven’t had the time
    to focus on a corporate site. We do however know it might be important for some
    to visit that, so the corporate http://www.umuntumedia.com
    will be live by close of business tomorrow. 

  6. madziva says:

    We welcome the US1million to Zimbabwe

  7. Robert says:

    I don’t see much need to go to this site/ $1 million doesn’t buy sense

    1. Anonymous says:

      @robert while your opinion is appreciated, we would be glad if you put it across in a respectful manner. If you believe $1 million doesn’t buy sense as deemed by you, please let the community know accordingly.

  8. kthaker says:

    This is actually a very good website! i think it may actually do very well if they can keep a high level of fresh local content going on the site..

  9. Chanyani says:

    Can one explain why Zimbabwe with a population far greater than Botswana has 442 Facebook fans and Bots has 992. Is it that Zims are poor and have no disposable income or that Zims only get on the net to e-mail their diaspora members. Am consulting as a Change Management consultant on my second ERP implementation in Bots and can tell that when in comes to Project Managing large software projects, Zim is still in the dark ages. We plunged down and are yet to appreciate best-practice in IT Services Management.

    1. Zim just launched. 2 days old. check again in a coupla weeks

    2. gomakakomarara says:

      Well if you must know, the 992 Bots are actually Zimboz in Botswana click click

    3. Nanano says:

      ignorance! u know nothing of zim then, and possibly never socialised around people who truly know project management.

      i guess we can blame your circles

  10. Tafmak3000 says:

    That looks like iCameroon or iSenegal, The colors they chose hardly invoke a Zimbabwean Sentiment, they could have put the Zimbabwe Bird or Black green yellow and red. I believe i’m correct in saying that when most look at the logo they think of Ethiopian airways http://www.flyethiopian.com/ before they think of their own country. I find it difficult to understand what is so revolutionary about this website. http://www.bulawayo24.com is a better example of what this websites is trying to be, where is the innovation then. But, hey they can’t be criticized for at least trying, great job for trying!!! Pathetic job in terms of everything else.

    PS: Go back and bring us back a proper logo

    1. Anonymous says:

      looks exactly like mali https://www.facebook.com/groups/261830100531769/?ref=ts

      1. Tafmak3000 says:

        Perhaps You might want to make that a Facebook page instead of a group

  11. Tafmak3000 says:

    How interesting that umuntu uses ubuntu’s typface for their own logo, as if the similarities in the name where not suspicious enough.

  12. Johan Nel says:

    Since going live on 16 November, there has been much debate over the logo on the iZimbabwe portal with some community members feeling that it was not representative enough. We would like to engage with our readers and supporters and get something uniquely Zimbabwean. We want to allow the community of iZimbabwe to design a brand new logo for our portal. The competition will run from effect of 5 December 2011 to 31 January 2012. The prize money for the winning entry will be a US$1,000.More details here: http://www.izimbabwe.co.zw/lifestyle/competitions.html

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