Posts by Erik Hersman

5 Business Lessons from Riding a Motorcycle in Nairobi

I got my first motorcycle when I was 16 and started to ride the streets of Nairobi.  Fortunately, we had fewer cars on the road back in the early ‘90s. I started to understand the way to see and think when dealing with the odd assortment of experiences you face on Kenyan streets.  Today, I … read more

Groundshots in an Age of Moonshots

I love the “moonshot” ideology, a type of thinking that aims to achieve something that is generally believed to be impossible.  I first came across this concept with Google X and their way of thinking about hard problems. Who wouldn’t get inspired by solving a massive challenge using next generation technology? Especially when it’s backed … read more

Internet in the Time of Coronavirus

The world shifted last week, and a new reality sits in front of us. We always paid lip-service to how important the internet was when everything was normal. We’ve all just realized it’s absolutely critical when things go upside down at a global level. “There are decades where nothing happens, and there are weeks where … read more

Moja is Coming to South Africa

Kilimanjaro rises through the cotton clouds, spread like a skirt around it. I don’t often get this view as most of my flights go West or North from Nairobi. This time I do, though, as I head to South Africa for the annual trek to AfricaCom, that gathering of all things established telecom and a … read more

BRCK Acquires the Surf Network

BRCK has long been on a mission to create an onramp to the internet for people who can’t afford it regularly.  To this end, we built the SupaBRCK that runs the Moja Network, and then started expanding that service in Kenya and Rwanda.  Moja is about getting everyone online, even if you can’t afford it, … read more

The Case for Connectivity (part 2)

(Part 1 here) I’ve argued before, alongside others, that the main inhibitor of ubiquitous and perpetual internet connectivity at a global level isn’t a technology problem, it’s a business model problem. Mostly the tech exists to put the signal everywhere. What we overlook when we say this is, that while that is true, it’s unsavory … read more

The Case for Connectivity (part 1)

As with most CEOs of younger companies, I find myself on the investment raising treadmill. Doing so for a company focused on internet connectivity in frontier markets provides an extra layer of complexity, since it’s not as sexy of a proposition as a new app for ecommerce, agtech, fintech, etc might be. Those are easier … read more

Reflecting on 5 Years of BRCK

It was 5 years ago that we created BRCK as a company, and I’ve had the great joy of being on a journey with some fantastic people, including the three here with me in this picture (Reg Orton, Emmanuel Kala, and Philip Walton). We had an idea of what we were getting into back in … read more