Fuel fraud can cause havoc to freight companies. With fuel one of the biggest expenses when transporting goods around, any fuel deviations can be a big hit to profitability. Care and attention is needed along the way, from checking that the correct fuel has been pumped in, and the transaction is correct at the petrol pumps, to monitoring whether fuel has been siphoned off, whilst a lorry is at a standstill. And it is not only the big companies that have to fight this. Families and individuals can also feel the impact of fuel fraud.
South Africa, and 6 other countries are bidding fare well to fraudulent payments at filling stations with its Payment24. Improvements in advanced fuel management and payment solution to reserve funds for fuel, speeding up of the payment process, control and track fuel expenditure by family members and employees is all an easy click away with the Payment24 app. Using this app allows motorist to geographically locate filling stations and pump number for authorisation to fill up. It has reduced traffic, transaction costs and petrol errors, which used to occur at filling stations. It is a master tool for both employees and employers.
This internationally recognised app has been developed in South Africa and will now be extending into new markets. Fuel companies will first be using their mobile phones to have access to payments with this app in over 600 stations country wide. Operating in 7 countries currently, with over 1110 worldly recognised gas stations such as BP, Caltex, Sprout fuels and Engen, it looks as though Payment24 has the potential to continue to spread beyond the borders of Africa. Its super friendliness even allows non-banked or security conscious customers to have full access to it. Linking of credit cards for ease of access to funding and payments being just a click away on mobile phones.
The app offers “fuel in tank” features, which promotes multiple integration through its fuel sensors, allowing high levels of accuracy in fuel gauging. Not only does this improve budgeting systems for customers and allow them to compare dispensed fuel from pumps with delivered fuel in tank for fleet vehicles, it also monitors whether fuel is being illegally syphoned from the tank. This simple function means that consumers can now be comfortable that they can stop and illegal syphoning, and save money!
With the thematic feature in place, fleet vehicles location and speed can be easily monitored through in built in sensors, which offer immediate feedback to drivers. Safety measures can finally be ensured as driver behaviour will be monitored. Figures in fatal accidents on roads could fall as a result of monitoring driver behaviour and speed. A side effect from what is already an extremely useful app, this function could be rolled out to all cars on the road, especially private buses, to ensure safer driving.
If you know of any innovations in Africa, an innovation that is changing lives, or you also want to be a guest blogger, get in contact with us on Twitter @inventiveAfrica or via email. Please share the blog with your network on Twitter andFacebook.
Teaching is an amazing field that I loved working in. The chubby smiles and faces with sparkling eyes full of hope staring at you everyday. It takes a heart that cares to transform lives no matter what the circumstances are. I recall some of the personal experiences that touched my heart every year with some of my students. Every day after extra lessons we would unintentionally find ourselves talking about issuesthat troubled them internally. Listening to their struggles and assisting in any way we knew giving the students hope to hold on.
I found myself being a counsellor, a listener and mentor without qualifications. One outstanding matric class of 2012 still amazes me. Most of my students came from very poor backgrounds and were struggling a lot with fees, but Of all 3 matric classes we had, they were the best in all subjects, includingmathematics, english and science. No one can imagine the joy, pride and excitement I felt every prize giving day for that year.
Exam time came and we had 53 bachelors out of 70 students that were set for exams. Sadly, only 15 of the 53 managed to make it to university. The rest could not afford university fees and neither could their families. Had I a blossoming bank account, I would have wiped all their sorrows away an helped them with their fees. .Alas I was just their humble teacher had nothing but myself to offer and echoes of my comforting words sinking deep in their hearts. None of them ever saw university doors.With a heavy heart I still keep touch with some of them. In different directions where they shouldn’t be life has taken them. The guilt I carry every time I see them rips me apart.”Is that all I could do” I still ask my self.Continue reading “Did You Know you can now easily get scholarships in Africa?”→
Buying a car can be a pain! And so can selling one. The shifty used car salesman, in his strange coloured suit, smarmy and with the gift of the gab, informing each clients on exaggerated positives on a clapped out old banger that just about meets your budget. All over the world, some of the best salesmen are working in car yards, up selling cars to the the clueless public, or even buying cars from the public and selling them on. Of course, I generalise a little with the stereotypical used car salesman analogy, and many are honest and sincere, but it can’t hide the face that many of us have no idea about how much to buy a car for, or what we are getting.
A lot of trust put in the car salesman, who generally has the power within the transaction. This is the same in many sectors. For example, in the African agricultural sector the middleman, who travels round from farm to farm collecting produce, controls the price that he pays and may not give a fair price compared to what it will sell on in the markets. The farmer has no idea of the going rate that day, and relies upon the middleman to transport their produce. But there are some innovative solutions in Africa that are putting more power in the hands of the farmers, who can now find out with ease what price they should be selling at.
If you search innovation or technology in Africa, you will find a lot of Fintech, Solar, education and health care innovations that are creating a buzz and getting noticed across the continent. Entertainment innovations are of course also popular and receive a hype. But, what about African business solutions? I don’t know about you, but when I search nothing usually jumps out at me, which is curious as the African business world (excuse the generalisation) has a unique culture. Like different cultures throughout the world, there are different ways of operating in Africa, and in the diverse Africa countries.
I found this out the hard way in Kenya, when I realised pretty quickly that my loud humorous (I like to think its humorous anyway!) entrances into meetings that I was used to in Ghana, simply did not work in the Kenyan setting. There are a plethora of other differences in the African business setting, but of course, some things stay the same across the continent and the world. So, there should be nothing standing in the way of African entrepreneurs creating business solutions that are effective across the world.
My day job is working for a campaigning agency in Zurich, and I know all too well some of the difficulties companies face meeting the needs of their target group. Market research is a long drawn out process, in which teams invest a lot of time to create ideas and then ask their target group if they like the ideas. From the data collected, the team has to come to a decision as to which route to take, but this decision is still based on their own initial ideas. Not ideal and not an exact science! We ask the target group themselves to create the ideas in a Target Community Lab™, saving time, money and enabling us to create individualised campaigns or products for our partners.
Another year is already over, and it has been an exciting one! As Christmas approaches, and 2018 peaks its head over the horizon, it is time to look back on 2017 and enjoy the innovative gifts that it has brought us from Africa!
The innovative African year has followed the expected trends with Fintech, Agriculture, health, education and renewable energy all receiving a lot of attention from Africa’s creative minds. It has also been a year in which innovation awards, and summits focussing on the topic of innovation in Africa have been very popular, and have also made a difference to many Start-ups in Africa; offering them funding, technical and business support to help develop their innovations to become world beaters.
How many ideas do you have? I have a lot, all the time, solving different problems, offering services for people, different tools and products. It is always a little disheartening when I find that someone already had the idea, or that is has been created already and is quite advanced. But, last week I was sent a news clip by the inspirational Edem Adzaho, who I was honoured to feature on Inventive Africa in May, about a Ghanaian that simply didn’t care that his innovation existed already. His aim was to not just replicate it, but to make it better.
The challenge he set for himself was not a small task of over coming a new product, he decided that the might of Youtube needed to be improved on. So, he set to it. Maybe it was the exuberance of youth that gives him the edge over me and my disheartened moments, but 19 year old Gabriel Opare took on this challenge and is well on his way to succeeding. Gabriel doesn’t even study computer programming, he is a Sociology student at my old university, the University of Ghana. He taught himself to code by taking online courses in his free time. Continue reading “Did You Know the African Youtube could inspire other innovators?”→
Malaria is a scourge in Africa, which is killing 500,000 people globally, every year. For those of us who were not born or raised in Africa, we know of it because of the huge charity campaigns to raise money to help prevent people from contracting it from mosquitoes. Dishing out treated mosquito nets to families in effected areas has been the main action aimed at malaria prevention, and it has had some success, but there are other innovations that are joining the “war on mosquitoes”. In some areas, such as in Zanzibar, there has been a drop in malaria prevalence from 40% to 1%, which is remarkable.
Over a year ago we also wrote a blog on this malaria war, with a number of technologies that are being used around Africa. From the SolarMal, which is a solar powered fan, which attracts in mosquitoes using human scent and kills them, Faso, a new type of soap which repels the unwanted creatures, or even incredible research by the IBM lab in Johannesburg helping understand potential resistance to drugs, there are countless projects and innovations to try and stamp out malaria by 2030.