Two Kenyan Diaspora Men Develop App for Live Video Trading, Auctioneering Online

Two Kenyan Diaspora Men Develop App for Live Video Trading, Auctioneering Online

Two Kenyan Diaspora Men Develop App for Live Video Trading, Auctioneering Online

Two Kenyan Diaspora Men, Ian Likono and Cyrus Gakuo have Developed an App for Live Video Trading and Auctioneering Online.

The coronavirus pandemic hit the world hard in 2020, disrupting life as people knew it. Many businesses worldwide had to close down, bringing about massive retrenchment and tough economic times for people. Lockdowns, social distancing and other COVID-19 measures meant that businesses needed to adopt new ways of transacting to stay afloat.

To achieve this, businesses migrated to the online space which they had never traded in before or were only used as a supplement to their core in-person business transactions.

This scenario meant that tech developers had to come up with more user-friendly and safe trading platforms and apps for the populations worldwide to compete with the few existing ones. Two Kenyan-born but US-based tech developers Ian Likono and Cyrus Gakuo, like other tech enthusiasts saw this shift in life as an opportunity to offer the best solutions for online businesses both in Kenya and worldwide.

It’s no doubt that Kenya is a force to reckon with in the tech industry based on evidence of successful initiatives like mobile money transactions.

Such notable advances documented in media and research repositories worldwide have firmly embedded Kenya’s contribution to the global Information Technology trends. Likono and Gakuo who constitute a part of the greater whole of young software developers told they were determined to ensure Kenya’s global contribution in digital transformation through software and applications creations not only advance but also offers basic and complex solutions to underlying problems in society.

“We have completed the development of Blif, a software which we believe will transform the online trading space. Its initial conception, design, and development is set to offer stiff competition to other related apps already in use in the West,” Likono told

They acknowledge that Blif’s concept was borrowed and resituated from shopping carts like Whatnot, Buy Sell & Go Live and the Popshop that are popular in the US. “Blif is the first of its kind in Kenya and apps offering similar services globally should watch out for this space for stiff competition beginning Saturday, July 10 when we launch it. We are targeting Kenyan users who will be happy to get a platform that offers amazing trading solutions,” Likono said. On his part, Gakuo argued that the disruption brought about by COVID-19 meant that it would never be business as it was before the pandemic thus the need for software developers to come out with new solutions to the new challenges.

“Blif which downloadable Google Play and Apple App Stores are designed to create an electronic marketplace where there will be a convergence of varied and multiple sellers and buyers in a live video format. It’s kind of an auctioneering model,” Gakuo explained. Gakuo expressed optimism that many businesses in Kenya and beyond would embrace the use of the Blif app given the increasing ease, access, and adoption of smartphones by many people who will only need to sign up then sign in to access its significant features. “Blif’s uniqueness compared to other related apps includes a forum it presents for users to offer their feedback regarding their experiences. Such feedback will be a crucial ingredient for improving the user experience. In an era of rising concerns among many internet users around consumer data and privacy, we assure that we have heavily invested to ensure consumers’ privacy and data is protected,” Likono assured.

He indicated that the app’s building process was governed by strict conformity to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) enacted by the European Union (EU) on May 25, 2018. “Our compliance to GDPR means that the app is not limited from operating in Kenya as the elements in this regulation resonate with the country’s recently promulgated Data Protection Act that must be adhered to by all data processors and collectors in this localised context,” he said.

Story by Korir Kiplimo


Two Kenyan Diaspora Men Develop App for Live Video Trading, Auctioneering Online

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