My name is Michael Kimani, the Chief Editor and Author of this blog.
I am a thought leader in the blockchain and cryptocurrency industry with over 5 years experience in this emerging industry as a consultant, practitioner, speaker, writer and champion.
Right now, I am a co-founder and Chief Marketing officer at Chamapesa, a company using blockchain elements to digitize the indigenous social savings groups culture of Africa. Previously, I led Umati Blockchain Ltd. as CEO, consulted for East Africa’s pioneering blockchain startups such as Bitpesa and have been part of ECAF, an arbitration forum for the world’s leading $8 billion valued EOS blockchain governance.
I shape opinions and provide strategic leadership on how blockchain and cryptocurrency technology will shape the future of Africa. I have been featured on BBC, CNN, French TV, K24, Fast Company, QZ Africa and participated at dozens of events across Africa for my compelling thoughts on how Africa can harness this great opportunity.
Often, I will share my thoughts and opinions on this blog, on twitter, Kenyan Wallstreet and selected publications that will have me. I also lead the blockchain community in Kenya as Chairman of the Blockchain Association of Kenya.
Since first coming across Bitcoin in 2011, a second time in 2012 and a third time in 2013, I have committed my full energy and time in community building, educating, promoting, and exploring cryptocurrency opportunities in Kenya for young East Africans culminating in adoption by 100,000 users in Kenya and the largest cryptocurrency blockchain community in Africa.
Over the years, I have been featured on dozens of local and global media outlets for my relentless efforts advocating cryptocurrencies and open blockchain technologies.
Right after graduating in 2014, I traded grain derivatives on Chicago’s Mercantile Exchange for Futures First’s proprietary desk, before moving to trade digital assets. I would later consult independently for BitPesa , a pioneer digital currency startup in Nairobi on digital currency products for young East Africans.
I joined Emerging Futures Lab as a user research associate, where I had a great 2 year experience working with an extremely talented multi-cultural team of Niti Bhan and Rinku Ganjera. We worked on East Africa’s informal sector, social savings groups, digital financial services and informal cross border trade for a trade development agency. I picked up a great deal on how to build products, services and policy that resonates with East African consumers.
In 2016 I joined a founding team at Umati Blockchain Ltd. that raised $50,000 from Chitra Capital for a pioneer on demand crypto assets gateway. As CEO, I led user research, sales and business development for Umati Blockchain Ltd.
A year later, I joined Itay Malinski and another founding team at Cryptovest – a cryptocurrency and blockchain industry focused media centre from Ukraine, as a news reporter and researcher for what would turn out to be an invaluable learning experience. I sharpened my writing and communication skills.
Sometime in 2017 it became clear there was a void in East Africa. So I led a group of young Kenyan entrepreneurs in the blockchain industry to form the Blockchain Association of Kenya, a non-profit advocacy society spearheading blockchain and cryptocurrency adoption across the African continent.
So far, my passion, experience and unique perspectives on an emerging industry have inspired a generation of young Africans. I am grateful for the dozens of opportunities to present and speak to audiences, sit on panels and share my thoughts on cryptocurrencies.
Whenever I find the energy, I put down my crystallized thoughts on kioneki blog, guest blogging on Kenyan Wallstreet, Techweez, the Daily Nation and any other publication that will have me. I think out loud on twitter @pesa_africa .
This year, I am excited to be part of the team at Chamapesa, a landmark African project empowering social savings groups known as Chamas across Africa, using blockchain technology. It has been an incredible journey to date, and I can’t wait to change the world with Chamapesa. Look out world!