Sunday, September 25, 2022
  • The regional hub will focus on blockchain innovation, talent development and community building in Africa
  • Marieke Flament, CEO of the NEAR Foundation, said the collaboration provides an opportunity to work with local talent

The NEAR Foundation has announced the launch of a regional hub in partnership with the Kenyan blockchain community Sankore. The Swiss non-profit organization is responsible for managing the development and governance of the NEAR protocol, a smart-contract-enabled blockchain that was launched in 2020.

The hub would be supported by a core team of four people and led by Sankore founder Kevin Imani. It would support blockchain innovation, educate communities, and foster talent development on the larger continent of Africa. The hub will also include the Sankore Bounty ecosystem, have an incubation program and academy, and also hold events.

All this is to provide a platform for the best blockchain developers in Africa.

“We are very excited to be working with NEAR to train and nurture talented individuals to become world-class blockchain developers. […] The NEAR Protocol enables tomorrow’s smartest developers to create custom solutions with scalability, security and transparency, and this hub is the next step in turning our shared vision into reality.“, Imani said.

Kenya and Africa in general are full of potential

The newly established program will strengthen the position of blockchain technology in Kenya. Current market data confirm that the East African country is already a leader in the introduction of this technology.

Blockchain and data analysis platform Chainalysis revealed last September that Kenya ranks fifth in the Global Crypto Adoption Index 2021. Kenya is the leader in crypto transaction volume, with peer-to-peer trading platforms recording the highest adjusted trading volumes.

CEO of the NEAR Foundation, Marieke Flament, noted this potential and predicted that entering Africa could play a significant role in the development of the blockchain space. Flament also noted that the partnership provides an opportunity to work with local talent.

The plan is to even spread beyond Kenya’s capital Nairobi to regions with little blockchain exposure in the country.

We are excited about the potential pathways across Africa for blockchain solutions resulting from innovation in development, education and talent. This hub represents a unique opportunity to work with local talent, not only for the opportunities that we know exist today, but also for the opportunities that will be created in the future.“, noted the CEO of the NEAR Foundation.

The efforts should bear fruit, as Sankore NEAR-Meets has hinted.