Africa 118 was founded in 2010 to solve a critical information gap: 85% of mobile customers surveyed in a major African city claimed to have difficulty finding accurate information for the local businesses and services they were looking for.
Our team with deep expertise in local search developed a strategy to address this issue:
- Partnering with mobile operators to help them provide a valuable service to their subscribers while generating profitable, new value-added service revenue.
- Providing affordable digital solutions for small and medium businesses to be found.
- Building the most comprehensive and accurate database of local businesses and services in each market.
We successfully launched our pilot with Safaricom in August of 2012 and have never looked back…
Ezana Raswork is a Senior Executive with over 20 years of General Management, Voice Search, Directory, Mobile, Marketing and Emerging market expertise.Prior to founding Africa 118, Ezana was a Senior Vice President at Canwest Publishing, Canada’s largest publisher. He had General Management responsibility for the Eastern Canadian business unit which generated $300M in sales and had over 1000 employees. Before joining Canwest, Ezana was the Vice President of Business Development at Yellow Pages Group, Canada’s dominant Yellow Pages company. There he led the Company’s entry in new vertical segments and into Enhanced Directory Services in partnership with a major Telecommunications operator. Ezana has an extensive marketing background that he gained from senior marketing roles at Microcell Telecommunications (Canadian GSM mobile operator) and over his 11 years at Procter and Gamble.
Mark joined Africa 118 in a full time role as Director of Operations in March 2012.Mark has deep expertise in the Directory Assistance industry gained over his 15+years working in leadership operational and product management roles with key players Cable & Wireless and Centrica. Mark’s emerging market expertise gained by setting up a green-field Directory Assistance operation for Centrica in India has proven to be of unique value in setting up robust Africa 118 operations in Africa. Mark’s most recent background as Business Development Manager for Cauwill Technologies, an Irish location based software provider for European Directory Assistance service providers, has enabled him to provide valuable guidance to enhance Africa 118’s voice service value proposition.
Einstein joined Africa 118 in a full time role as Business Manager – Product in June 2013.
Prior to joining Africa 118, Einstein was the Data and Customer Service Manager at Mocality.com – a leading online local search portal in Kenya and Nigeria owned by Naspers (South Africa). Einstein was responsible for setting up and handling an innovative crowd-sourcing data collection program. He recruited a team of agents to effectively collect data from small businesses in Kenya and upload them onto the Mocality.com website in exchange for a fee. He was also responsible for developing the data management platform and tools supporting this program. Einstein’s extensive background with online and social media platforms has been key to drive Africa 118’s expansion onto new online and mobile platforms.
Einstein has a BSc. (Honors) in Computer Science from Manchester University in the UK.
Yusto joined Africa 118 in a full time role as Data Manager in May 2012.
Yusto was recruited following an extensive search for the optimal candidate combining IT expertise in Database Development, Software and Content Development, Project Management and Systems Analysis. His deep technical expertise (PHP, Java, XML, My SQL) acquired over the past 7 years working across a variety of IT projects in Kenya (Ecryp, Toyota, USAID) has helped to ensure Africa 118 strong leadership for the local data team to ensure the accuracy of the database as well as support the evolution of the service. Yusto has also developed proprietary database tools and software applications which ensure Africa 118’s core data assets are structured for optimal performance as well as to enable expansion geographically as well as onto multiple platforms.