innovatorMr Eric Mutta, A 29-year-old software developer has won over Sh500 million in a landmark Information Technology innovation deal for a local entrepreneur.

The grant from the Financial Sector Deepening Trust (FSDT) was won through Problem Solved Limited, a company he created in 2008.

Based in Dar es Salaam, the budding software engineer will receive his award tomorrow at a formal ceremony in the city.

“I am excited as this award represents the company’s first major breakthrough in the ICT world and hopefully it will encourage many other young innovators to test the uncharted waters,” Mutta told The Citizen yesterday ahead of his big day on Tuesday.

His company beat 13 other companies, including well-established financial institutions, to clinch $328,232 in the second round of awards under the SME Finance Innovation Challenge Fund (ICF).

Mr Mutta’s innovation called ‘Minishop’ beat a strong field of competitors to carry the day. The huge grant will help the self-employed entrepreneur to grow his business.

With the money, Problem Solved will now build a team of employees and buy laptops through which it would distribute Minishop to the target group.

According to Mutta, Minishop is a user-friendly accounting software package targeting the more than 3 million small businesses, many of them in the informal sector.

“Minishop aims at helping businesses to keep better financial records and apply for loans easily,” said Mutta. This would be the second time that the Minishop innovation was winning recognition.

In March 2012, Mutta won $15,000 (Sh24.75 million) from the United States Department of State in an upcoming ICT innovators’ competition.

Source: The Citizen