We all have had ideas in which we wanted to change the world or be recognised internationally etc., but for our fellow youth Samson Fiado, this is no longer a dream. He is actually living his dream. I had a chance to have a little one on one chat with him and this is what he had to say:
Meet Samson Fiado from a poor family background that went to college with no shoes, luggage and no beddings to the only Malawian finalist for the global innovation through science and technology awards (GIST)
Tell me about yourself
My name is Samson Fiado, am the second born in the family of 5 boys. I come from T/A Chapananga, Muyambutsa Chikwawa. Currently am in my final year studying business information systems at the university of Malawi the Polytechnic.
What is easy books accounting software?
It is software which is designed specifically for entrepreneurs in the small and medium enterprises. What sets it apart from other similar software’s is the fact that it has two unique features which are transport and logistics module as well as business planner module. Others found in this software are pre purchase and production modules.
When did you start?
It was two years ago when I was working for the SMES, I saw there that something was missing in the department and I had to find a way to fill that gap. So I sat down with my four friends and told them about it. We started out fine until the pressure was too much to handle and they backed out. So it was just me. It was in March this year when the SMES guys gave my software a name as easy books because it was making things easy in the department and so that’s how it came to be successful.
What inspired you to start the software?
Among other things it was the poor services in the SMES the system was too sophisticated and very expensive, and off course, I was looking at it with the entrepreneurship mind set. I wanted to reduce the gap of unemployment in Malawi.
What are the benefits of the software to you and the nation?
The benefits are plenty, am able to create jobs to other people which in turn is an economic development, income generation in my country and the prestigious award I just won made me to be recognised internationally. The tech-I competition initially had 792 applications from 72 nations in the sectors of agriculture, energy, healthcare, and information communication technology. 76 were shortlisted and it was up to public voting to come up with the best 30. In my category, we were 15 candidates.
If someone wants to have access to the software, how do they access it?
Well for that people have to direct get in touch with me where I will give them or send them the cd.
What are the challenges you have faced?
Time management was a major challenge, I had to skip most of the classes, it’s like I only gave school 20% of my time, the rest was given to the software, but I thank God I still passed my final examination. At other times I was questioning my decision but still I persevered and here I am. The second challenge was finance to establish the business, neither the government nor my college supported me in any way; this is sad considering the fact that what I invented is beneficial to the country. At one point I was invited by some guys from India who wanted to buy me and establish the business in India, but I refused because I love my country and I always remember where I come from. So I will persist against all odds in Malawi and nowhere else.
What can you advice the youth who are harbouring ideas like yours, who live in fear to go big?
The first and most important advice I would give to the youth is to have self-belief in the idea. They should have a firm belief in the idea, do not be afraid to pursue it, go ahead, tell it to a friend, go out there with it that way you will open many doors for opportunities. Do not wait for financial support, you will never get started, I had completely nothing when I started out, when I went in college for my first year, I had no shoes, luggage and no beddings, I survived on food allowance which I would also send home some to support my family. But through patience and perseverance, I made it this far.
Any last words to everyone out there who will be reading this?
For the government, I would like to appeal, supporting innovations is one of the ways to develop our country, look at America, they supported Steve jobs and mark zukerberg among others because they knew their economy will be boosted. Look at the 2 companies now. If only the government of Malawi could do the same then we would be singing a new song. And for my fellow youth, focus on innovations for entrepreneurship, there is no entrepreneurship without innovation, so focus on innovations, whether you come up with something completely new or improve on the already existing ideas, the world will be better for it.