Now celebrating its 10th anniversary, the Anzisha Prize is a programme in partnership with the African Leadership Academy and the Mastercard Foundation that seeks to grow the number of job-generative entrepreneurs on the African continent and to provide them with the support needed to ensure the sustainability of their projects.
Katumba Jonathan Paul, CEO of Minute5
Katumba Jonathan Paul from Uganda is an entrepreneur, tech enthusiast and developer and CEO of Minute5. As a finalist in the 2020 Anzisha Prize, he shares more about the startup and what he would do if he wins...
Can you tell us a bit about Minute5?
Minute5 is an online grocery delivery service that aims at delivering fresh farm groceries to consumers and businesses in the shortest time possible at the most affordable prices.
When, how and why did you get started?
We started operations in 2018 by selling passion fruits to customers in offices because my co-founder Abdallah was farming passion fruits. We would pack them and take them to office and later, we decided to develop an online platform where customers would have more options and better able to see the prices. We realised that more customers needed as service like ours and more small-scale farmers needed our help to be able to sell of their produce.
What is the core function of Minute5?
Our core function as Minute5 is to sell convenience service to customers. We deliver quickly and affordably.
What are some of the obstacles you've had to overcome since starting out?
Being a small company, we are cash starved, and we almost closed business during Covid-19 because of the increase in demand for the service, however, we were able to stay a float when we got a cash advance from one of our customers that gave us a big push to fulfil all our orders. But to date, access to funds is the biggest challenge and with this, its hard for us to execute some ideas that would cause more impact and create decent work.
Do you have any advice would you give to other aspiring youth entrepreneurs?
This entrepreneurship journey is actually fun, there is a lot of learning. I wish that we the young people get more involved in creating sustainable businesses that will change our economic environment. The journey is also easy for those that can persevere so keep pushing until things work out.
What has been your proudest achievement thus far?
Running Minute5 is my biggest achievement. It has taught me a lot, it has made me meet lots of people who have helped grow my venture.
What does the future of entrepreneurship look like to you?
My focus on this entrepreneurship journey is to focus on improving the food supply chain and also, I plan to focus on internet of things which is a promising emerging technology. I just want to build ventures that will be impactful.
What would you like to see changed in the Ugandan startup landscape?
I would love to see a better entrepreneurship networking environment. For us to become really good, we need to collaborate, so my biggest wish is that we have one big community of entrepreneurs where we can share from. Also, we need more funding to come in for startups in our country that are on the stage of growth and scale.
What do you believe are the traits an entrepreneur needs in order to succeed?
I think an entrepreneur has to be fearless, perseverant, visionary and should be quick to learn, unlearn and relearn.
You're a finalist for the 2020 Anzisha Prize. What does this mean for you?
Well, I’m really excited to be a finalist. It means a lot because it shows how much people recognise the kind of work we are doing as Minute5 in Africa. Also joining the Anzisha community is really exciting because I’m going to be opened up to great networks.
Should you be crowned the winner, what would you do with the prize?
We shall use the prize to grow the business. Our aim is to create a fast, affordable and reliable grocery delivery service. So we shall invest in improving the service, serving more small scale farmers and acquiring more customers.