Kenyan Tech Startup BRCK Secures $3M In Funding

Written by Kevin Mwanza

Kenyan technology firm BRCK, which manufactures routers and modems that enable users to access Wifi internet in remote areas, has secured $3 million from a group of foreign investors to help it expand local and international operations.

The current fund raising included investments from former AOL executives Jean and Steve Case, along with other participating international investors including Jim Sorenson, TED, MKS Alternative Investments, Synergy Energy and others.

BRCK was created by the founders of Ushahidi — a crowdmapping for crisis situation app and Nairobi’s iHub coworking space for techies. The brick-shaped device is a rugged mobile device with smart technology and enough backup power to survive a blackout for eight hours.

Its makers claim it provides fail-safe Internet connectivity in almost any environment.

The goal when BRCK launched in 2013 was to connect the more than 800 million Africans without Internet. Most of these users access the Internet through wireless connections which is the market that BRCK is targeting.

This is the third time the startup has raised funding from investors. It raised $172,000 on Kickstarter when it launched in 2013 and another $1.2 million in mid 2014 from local and international investors.

BRCK is also redefining Kenya’s primary education through BRCK Education, with the Kio tablet, a seven-inch Android tablet designed for use in primary schools in remote areas.