Always look for the “game changer”
Remember what I’ve written before about the importance of having the right mindset? Always looking for the game changer… that’s a mindset, too!
When we were planning to set up Kwesé TV, I asked an expert what he thought would be one of our biggest challenges.
“Getting licenses to operate in all these countries,” he said. “Maybe we have to go to court again?”
“No, we’re not going to court on this one. No need,” I said emphatically. “We will operate where we have licenses and use the YouTube solution elsewhere.”
“YouTube solution?” he asked.
“Does YouTube need a license for their TV services on the Internet?”
“So you mean if we offered the service, through an App, we won’t need a license?” This sounded interesting.
“Well, if it’s like YouTube, the only way they can stop us is to shut down the whole Internet.”
“I see. Can we develop an App like WhatsApp?”
“How many people in Africa watch YouTube?” I asked my team.
“Almost 20m.”
“I wouldn’t mind a TV service across Africa, with 20m customers,” I retorted. “This might be the game changer we need. Let’s offer our service using an App, and let people download like YouTube.”
# What is your mindset when you see a challenge?
Immediately, I got a team to start developing the Kwesé App. You download it just like WhatsApp, and you can watch anything, just like on YouTube! The Kwesé App has been downloaded in almost every African country. Every day, thousands are downloading this App.
Now I know some of you will say to me, “But data is so expensive!”
“Don’t worry, when we started cell phones it used to be $3/minute. It will always come down.”
But if I were to answer you as an entrepreneur, rather than as a customer, I would say: “What an opportunity for you!”
# What is your mindset when you see a challenge?
Some young guys came to see me from a West African country, and told me they want to build WIFI hotspots to enable people to watch Kwesé TV, using the Kwesé App!
“Do you have a business model for it?” I asked.
“Yes, sir!”
“Can I invest?!”
Mobile operators are now lowering their data tariffs so they can cash in on the Kwesé App. It has happened in Rwanda after just one month. Watch what will happen over the next two years across Africa! People will forget that they ever watched TV on a big screen.
# What is your mindset when you see a challenge?
A friend of mine called me to say he was watching Kwesé TV in Nigeria, on a big screen in his house!

“How?!” I asked surprised. We are not yet in Nigeria.
“Some guy bought decoders in Ghana and sold me one,” he laughed. “This is Nigeria, my friend. People are already making money on this Kwesé of yours!”
I laughed, too. Our decoders are probably selling at Ikeja Market, and many other markets across this beautiful continent of ours. Be smart but don’t break the law!
# We are a continent of entrepreneurs!
Author: Strive Masiyiwa