Six years on, Cio100 Awards and Symposium getting better


The Sixth Edition of the Cio100 Symposium will soon be here. The event recognises excellence in the adoption and use of IT. Both organisations and individual CIOs or equivalents in organisations are awarded. Winners are recognized at the CIO100 Symposium and Awards, a two-day high energy celebration of IT excellence marked with networking and knowledge sharing.

But how exactly did the CIO100 Symposium and Awards begin?

“The whole idea of CIO100 was born to get CIO’s creating impact in their organisations through use of technology to be acknowledged through the innovations and the contributions they bring in the organisations,” said Harry Hare, Publisher and CEO of CIO East Africa.

During the 2010 inaugural event Safaricom emerged the overall winners with the M-Pesa Project which the judges termed not only innovative but impactful. The first runner up was Nairobi Stock Exchange’s Automatic Transaction Settlement (ATS) system. Equity Bank’s MKesho was the second runners up. The year 2010 saw CIO100 recognize organisations that played ahead of the pack in the industry under the PlusOne award.

In 2011 Kenya Education Network (KEN- ET) won the CIO100 Annual Awards. KENET received the award for their project that seeks to provide internet connectivity to educational institutions. Eat Out Kenya were first runners up. Their project saw many restaurants go online. Nakumatt Holdings scooped second runners up for project titled “IT enabled miscellaneous products and services”.

In 2012, however, CIO100 Symposium took a break as organisers took time off to re-align the event to what they wanted it to be.

“We wanted to restrategize the whole activity because we were getting a lot of pressure from vendors who also wanted to be given awards during the awards,” he said.

In 2013 the event returned with so much vigor. It was held in Kigali, Rwanda. The event saw introduction of The CIO of The Year Award, to acknowledge excellence amongst CIO’s.

“Initially we only listed 100 organisations and acknowledged them but we thought of making the awards more competitive and therefore CIO of The Year Award was born,” said Hare.

Engineer Wainaina Mungai of Royal Media was named the CIO of the year in 2013. Royal Media emerged as most innovative company. Kenya Judiciary was second and Gertrude’s Children’s Hospital third.

Mr. Kevin Kinyanjui, Information Systems Director and CIO of Kenya’s national carrier, Kenya Airways, took the 2014 ‘CIO of the Year’ Award. Kenya Airways was named most innovative company for its Baggage Management System (BMS).

In 2014, various IT initiatives in Kenya’s public sector were recognised. The IT Leadership award was given to President Uhuru Kenyatta. Savannah Cement was first runners up with an ERP project implementation. 2014 saw firms that were best performing in their industry awarded in PlusOne Awards.

In 2014, the event introduced Country awards where Uganda’s Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) emerged top for its Smart City project named e-Cities. Tanzania’s National ID Authority (NIDA) and Rwanda’s I&M Bank won the Country awards for their respective countries. 2014 also saw a special award go to Kili, a public Cloud platform which uses Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) to deploy most Internet apps.

In 2015, The CIO at Britam East Africa Ltd Mr. Jack Maina, became the CIO of the Year. Maina, received his award following his leadership role in Britam’s Jawabu project. Victor Kyalo, the CEO at the Kenya ICT Authority (currently Principal Secretary Ministry of ICT) was awarded the CIO100 Leadership award for steering the transition of the Authority from the defunct Kenya ICT Board to the new Authority.

“We continue to introduce new categories every year. This year the 100 organisations to be recognized will be grouped in categories of Gold, Bronze, silver and Ivory categories The Gold category will be for the organisations that are using technology aggressively. The idea is to get organisations put the right foot for- ward,” added Hare.

For 2016, two new tracks have been introduced to the CIO100 Award:

The DEMO track- a partnership between CIO East Africa and DEMO Africa, which looks into some of the B2B Start-ups who have gone through DEMO Africa to pitch before CIOs.

“This is like a twist from the usual DEMO Africa where Start-ups pitch before investors. This is mostly for start-ups working on B2B solutions,” said Hare.

The other track will see CIO East Africa work with Council of Governors to come up with the track on e-governments.

“As the event organisers we expect that this year we will see more exciting ways of doing businesses. We expect to see great innovations from the different organizations especially across the region,” added Andrew Karanja, COO CIO East Africa

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