GEO-MIK binds with nature to support Mankind
Africa being one among the most resourceful continents particularly in minerals around the world, how do GEO-MIK consultants help the African countries grow economically as well compete with other countries?
Africa is well endowed with natural resources and so is mineral depositions in the different parts of continent even while vast of these have remained largely unexploited. The private sector constitutes part of the broad stakeholder group and strategic partner to the public sector for inclusive social economic development and transformation of African economies irrespective of how one wants to look at it. GEO-MIK is just part and partial of this ecosystem to complement government and other development partners in different efforts through our core product and service portfolios tailored to especially natural resource monitoring and support infrastructure planning and development at different levels and across industries. Partnerships and multi stakeholder coaction are key and we believe this is the way we will grow sustainable. This is necessary especially for innovation, synergy, technology transfer and value addition.
The incorporation started in 2008 and in between your company had faced a downfall and later you arose like a king of the industry, can you share about the experience?
This is an interesting question and I believe this relates quite well with many similar stories and enterprises in Africa and other parts of the World. Simply because, of initial operational challenges associated with startups and across different the phases of growth and such may include; access to capital, credit, building and sustaining the scale of staff, competitive rivalry, sustaining internal operations among others. For example, along the way we closed and reopened several times in the early stages before re-establishing at a garage and like would be synonymous with start-up growth over the years these greatly impacted the company and affected the pace of our growth in multiple ways.
However, with understanding that markets will always fall and raise, we need to get resilient as well toward keys to competitiveness in our services and product fraternity by analysing forces that shape sector competition at a level of strategic business to business and also in the industry as a whole. This is a part of the reason we had transition, reinforce, transform and reconfigure our ICT infrastructure so as to accustom to the industry and consolidate effectively our growth and reposition our business for the regional and international agenda. It is necessary to relocate office to a Strategic City, Entebbe the host of Entebbe International Airport and upscale and add value to the business and later evolve GEO-MIK from a firm to a limited liability company and realign our product and service portfolios to the emerging markets.
Even we are aware there is more yet to be done, we are happy for sustaining operations and adapting to emerging industry and market challenges. We improved our visibility, secured cooped nominations and brand recognition including for example the reputable CEO Global 2023 Award and now featuring in this interview with BIZ TECH outlook among others. We remain absolutely glad to all our clients, partners, staff and all stakeholders that have played a role and sustained professional and industry cooperation.
What is the significant change you made in the industry and how does it positively contribute to industry growth?
I can point out one incidence that relates to this question which is stimulative and enhancing momentum of industry partnership and cooperation. Because I believe in the potential of cooperation and collaboration for any industry to sustainably flourish. Beyond our domestic or internal mandate, we are involved in broader industry and ecosystem initiatives. For example, we initiated and pioneered efforts towards industry cooperation by encouraging strategic partnership with players at the local, regional, and continental levels such as actively participating at the fore front in the first Private Sector Initiatives for GMES and Africa RCMRD program that centred on our private sector project and program outputs. Which later scaled-up towards the idea of founding the first Africa Space Industry Partnership Program (ASIPP) with private sector colleagues from South Africa, Kenya, Uganda, and Cote d’Ivoire, with the ultimate goal of establishing a voluntary non-profit partnership of industry organizations across the African continent towards supporting the growth of the African space sector through local and international promotion of current and new industry participants while actively working with similar industry bodies around the World. As we look to participate more in industry collaborative initiatives locally and globally, we are glad as GEO-MIK for up-scaling the momentum in the industry to cooperate in Africa and beyond.
What is the graph you have planned for the future?
We are always consistent in our mission and would like to be an international pillar and hub for geo-information, land, and spatial development solutions globally. We are solidifying our domestic operational scale and fast-tracking our international and global footprint. Feed into our long-range strategic focus of consolidating GEO-MIK’s international competitiveness and propelling our international initiatives. As a company we will participate to provide our mandates and core portfolios through this, which will not only directly and indirectly attain the company’s aims, but will also assist various development efforts and, in time, will contribute sustainably to the global economy as a whole. We will achieve this through synergizing, developing and nurturing startup initiatives around the world through a global enterprise and venture partnership program anchored by our international program and in line with our social goal of contributing to the global development agenda for a socially inclusive and sustainable development that is aligned with the SDG’s.
Describe one of your cutting-edge solutions that gives extra mile to your customers?
We offer a range of specialized services and products for the markets. Over the years, we transformed and revolutionized professional service and product portfolios to adapt to market shifts and configurations. Geospatial information and GeoICT emerge as our premier and core products in the mainstream. We are deploying fit-for-purpose remote sensing and specialized geospatial solutions, earth observation, satellite image data analysis and processing and making extensive use of the satellite data capabilities for a range of solutions and products. As a commercial reseller for Planet satellite imagery and as ESRI bronze partner in Uganda, we then present unique opportunities and value propositions to the market with different solutions and product packages.
Becoming a business leader is not an easy task, can you rewind yourself and share your professional experience and struggles you faced?
Absolutely not easy task to start and sustain business operations. Initially as a young and ambitious 23-year-old youth then at university I grew an inner thirst desiring to reverse my underprivileged life of having been raised up in poverty. Growing up as an underprivileged child to parents with no formal employment, was absolutely bound to affect directly my early childhood opportunities especially education and other necessities of life. It is hard to also forget this one popular stereotype in Africa; “that one can never start and succeed with his/her original idea or any business venture unless he/she is from a privileged family or supported by government or powerful connection somewhere”. I had to dispel this after realizing it is not essential. I needed to start anyhow. As luck would have it at university, 2006 I had accessed the “Rich Dad Poor Dad” book by “Robert Kiyosaki”, and this replenished me and also sparked off the “go-start gear”. My drive was quite big and threatening too because it was scaling beyond Uganda and Africa and on 28th February 2008, GEO-MIK was legally registered and that sooner or later birthed our story.
Along the journey, I realized that to shape and sustain real world of entrepreneurship, at a personal level, it was essential to make bold trade and confront competitive career choices; further study, full time employment or pursuit of my dream. Ultimately, I relinquished the latter and also called off early opportunities for postgraduate study multiple times. In 2017, I enrolled for Masters of GIS at Leeds University but eventually dropped out later. Prior, I had also dropped out of another master’s program in Italy, 2011. However, when I reflect, today, I am excited and motivated to see the growth and visibility of our work at the fore front in the industry.
Through GEO-MIK, I have implemented and participated in projects and programs covering different organizations and institutions in Africa; Altogether, in last 15 years I have presided over strategic operations and championed the business start-up, conceptualized and developed portfolios, spearheaded transformations and growth within new markets as well as coordinating GEO-MIK’s domestic and foreign policy.
What advice would you give to budding business leaders?
It is going to be of the essence to recognize that business and the markets are going to turn around, fail, shut down and unevenly fluctuate and that makes you being prepared and determined for such flexibility and to adapt to operate in the competitive market with total commitment in your vision. It makes you stronger and a better leader. I believe it is essential then to adopt management style that drives you by vision, strategic plan, budget, policy, innovation and critical thinking. Importantly, also be a professional, be reliable, responsible, accountable and act with integrity. Note that knowledge and information is power, so keep abreast with emerging technologies, read and research, seek new knowledge and diversify skills to enhance performance and productivity and then ultimately contribute to human development.
“We are always consistent in our mission and would like to be an international pillar and hub for geo-information, land, and spatial development solutions in Africa”
“Knowledge and information are power”