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An Interview with Joel Nyarunda of Mzoori.

I actually met Joel of Mzoori some months ago at one of the MobileMonday meetings. He struck me as a highly passionate and determined person about this online business he co-founded. I had been in touch with him, on and off, since then to organize an interview on what Mzoori is and what their plans are. Finally, below is what we discussed:

What is Mzoori?

Mzoori” has the meaning of being nice, good or beautiful. The name is founded on the swahili word “mzuri” making the two homophones as they sound similar and have equivalent meaning. Mzoori was established in October 2009 as a merger of two web businesses: OnlineDuka Co. Ltd. (www.onlineduka.com) founded in 2006 and Tipsonline Ltd. (www.tipsonline.biz) founded in 2005. Mzoori offers innovative web and mobile solutions for businesses and people in East Africa to sell their products and services online.

How did Mzoori start?

Before establishing Mzoori, the founders did surveys and research to find out what exactly the need out there was for a service such as mzoori.com. After surveying over 200 businesses and about 1,000 individuals, it was apparent there was a need for an integrated e-commerce and advertising service on mobile and PC web for East Africa. To-date, Mzoori has over 7,000 registered users and close to 500 businesses listed.

Who are the founders behind Mzoori?

The founders of Mzoori are Wilfred O. Mainye, Mogaka Mwencha and Joel A. Nyarunda.

Where do you see Mzoori in 2 to 5 years?

We are a company and brand that is aspiring to be a world-class entity in innovation and service delivery for Africa. In the next two years, we plan to scale up and sign-up over 10,000 businesses and over 100,000 users.

How is Mzoori different from the competition?

Mzoori stands out from competition in a number of ways. We are firstly building a brand that will stand out in the marketplace for quality. We are also innovating a new way of shopping called “social shopping” where buyers and sellers can engage online and shop collaboratively and interactively. Mzoori is also working towards a fully e-commerce enabled meaning that businesses can sell their products and services directly from our web site.  We have also put measures into place that ensure safe and high quality transactions happen via Mzoori.

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13 Comments

  1. November 15, 2010 at 2:30 am — Reply

    They are tapping some real potential. Go go Mzoori, go for it!, but discourage items with missing prices – beats the essence of commerce
    .-= gmeltdown´s last blog ..Tribulations of the M-PESA Agent =-.

  2. November 15, 2010 at 6:03 am — Reply

    Nice piece, this is the way to go in shooping! Keep it up mzoori 🙂

  3. Chaliblues
    November 15, 2010 at 7:40 am — Reply

    Interesting

  4. Davis
    November 15, 2010 at 7:44 am — Reply

    Very Interesting, the ‘social shopping’ concept clearly stands out in mzoori. Very many shoppers and sellers wanna have a fun and interactive shopping especially while shopping online. The fact that i can ask for public opinion about a product or a service before I shop or order make me in a position to know where to get the best of the service or product at a good bargain.
    I hope eventually the connection between sellers and buyers will be enhanced thus making it fast, reliable and convenient to get goods and services.
    With the need for convenience in shopping, I believe Kenyans will soon get hooked to the online shopping culture. ALL THE BEST MZOORI

  5. johny
    November 15, 2010 at 7:48 am — Reply

    was moving out n had to dispose some ov my house hold goods ASAP, a pal mentioned to me about mzoori n i tried it to my amazement all my stuff went in no time, the payment system and its optioned were easy and fast to use…something about mzoori spells business success am a happy n satisfied mzoorian will mosdef use it alooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooot.

  6. Katembu
    November 15, 2010 at 7:51 am — Reply

    Social Shopping is a method of e-commerce where shoppers’ friends become involved in the shopping experience. Social shopping attempts use technology to mimic the social interactions found in physical malls and stores.
    This a great idea for Mzoori and first of its kind in East Africa probably. Keep up Mzoori Team

  7. stesh
    November 15, 2010 at 8:10 am — Reply

    very kool …..will get to contact n know mo abt mzoori too

  8. abdil
    November 15, 2010 at 8:37 am — Reply

    Young but with progressive ideas geared towards the well-being of a society congrats man

  9. November 15, 2010 at 8:38 am — Reply

    Inspiring, inspiring, inspiring Africa we are going places. I can’t wait to check it out
    .-= Kagai Macharia´s last blog ..Shopping for Fresh Produce – Part 2 =-.

  10. kerryd
    November 15, 2010 at 8:53 am — Reply

    Thats the way to go mzoori,i like this very much coz thts wea we are headed

  11. mimi
    November 15, 2010 at 8:54 am — Reply

    wow this a great idea…….way to go mzoori

  12. modelv
    November 15, 2010 at 8:59 am — Reply

    i love this

  13. Gathu
    November 18, 2010 at 12:10 pm — Reply

    Very informative piece, was waiting to see something about mzoori for a while, they have been secretive since they came in. Give us more sir & keepup the good work.

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