ORPHANED AT the age of 11, young Mubarak Muyika faced a bleak future.
The youngster, born in Kenya, was taken in by his aunt and her husband following the death of his parents and worked for their small book publishing and distribution company, Acrodile Publishers.
While working for his family, he discovered the difficulty they faced each day trying to reach more customers with the insufficient help of a webmaster who provided a poor service at a very high cost.
Mubarak taught himself how to build a website using online resources to help the business reach more customers.
Within a few months, he became well-versed in online design and delivered a working e-commerce site for Acrodile Publishers.
‘‘I cleared high school in 2011, two years earlier I had developed a passion for computers that saw me set up a website for my adoptive parents who were running a bookshop. ‘‘They needed an online platform to expand their venture,’’ He told the Business Daily in an interview at Nation Centre, Nairobi.
Murarak was offered a fully paid scholarship to Harvard University in the US, but turned it down to focus on his entrepreneurial dream.
In January 2012, Mubarak registered Hype Century Technologies and Investments Ltd, a company which deals in web-designing and domain registration. He soon incorporated two of his friends in the enterprise and within three months, the business became a highly profitable one.
‘‘We started very small, with Sh50,000 (£336) which I had saved from a freelance job I had been doing as a student and after High School. My first client was so impressed that he offered me space in his office at Rehema House in Nairobi,’’ he recalls.
In the same year he became an Anzisha prize fellow and was awarded with Sh1.1 million (£6,715.368).
Anzisha Prize targets African entrepreneurs aged between 15 and 21 who have developed innovative businesses which have positively impacted on communities.
HypeCentury has continued to grow and become profitable, expanding services to include domain name registration, online marketing, and more.
Mubarak’s vision for HypeCentury is to grow East Africa’s economy by leveraging the power of the internet.