On June 30th, the Engineering Student Association (ESA) held an important presentation on Zindua Cafe at University of Nairobi engineering hall. The presentation aimed at educating students on the significance of patenting, intellectual property and trademark when coming up with useful inventions. The event was attended by engineering students from various departments including software engineers, civil engineers, electrical engineers, alumni from University of Nairobi and industry players in the field of innovation.
“This presentation is very useful to you students as you will be enlightened on how to patent your work especially after coming up with inventions. Safaricom’s partnership with Kenya Industrial Property Institute (KIPI) is a success as we are able to create awareness in universities or institutions where technical people are and are involved in innovation,” said Ida Gacheri, Safaricom representative.
Several presentations were made. The first one was on Zindua Cafe by Russell Akuom,,Safaricom’s Strategy and Architecture Engineer. He explained “Zindua Cafe is an interactive web portal that allows registered users to submit ideas, applications or prototypes to Safaricom Limited. Once the submissions are made to Safaricom, the telecommunication firm reviews them internally and sends either an ‘interested’ or a ‘regret’ response to the user.”
Akuom insisted that if Safaricom is ‘interested’ in any submission, the user will be offered a non-disclosure agreement and commercial contract governing Safaricom’s intended implementation of the submission.”
An interesting feature in the system is the fact that one can view his or her previous ideas, prototypes and applications.
The second presentation was made by David Njuguna, Chief Patent Examiner, Kenya Industrial Property Institute (KIPI). He outlined the role of KIPI, rationale of Intellectual Property (IP), the process of registering or acquiring an application, patent rights condition, trademarks and industrial designs.Also in attendance was Timothy Akuba from Systech Limited who talked about licensing own software or invention.
Zindua Cafe application encourages students or innovators to be able to inspire, invent and innovate.