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MEST Students win US$20,000 from Google

Tourbly, developed by a team of students from the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) has been announced regional winner of 2013 Google Cloud Developer Challenge, winning US$20,000 cash prize.

The annual challenge, last year in September 2013, invited submissions from the developer community worldwide for new applications built using Google’s Cloud platform.

Out of over 400 submissions from around the world, 12 teams were announced winners made up of 2 teams from each region – Latin America, India, Middle East & Northern Africa, South East Asia, Sub Saharan Africa, United States and Europe.

The team of 3, Precious Ewusi Nyarko, Samuel Ako and Christian Osei-Bonsu, all 2nd year students at MEST developed Tourbly, a platform for travel lovers, working to connect other travelers with friendly and reliable tour guides to hundreds of tourist destinations worldwide.

“We couldn’t be more excited and optimistic about the future. Having competed successfully on the world stage with over 400 talented developer teams, we are confident now, more than ever, in our ability to execute as a team and deliver when it matters most. The cash and recognition that comes with it will be instrumental as we take Tourbly from “cool app” to being a profitable business,” said Precious Ewusi Nyarko, Tourbly team leader.

Congratulating the team, Ekua Odoom, Managing Director, MEST, said “MEST is pioneering a noble cause to support great talent in Africa. There are a ton of exceptional talent in Ghana and Africa as a whole and our goal at MEST is to give young people the opportunity to realise their potential through training, mentoring and seed support. We offer these students the opportunity to build successful software businesses that can compete on a global scale and inspire generations to follow. Today, we are so proud of our entrepreneurs who have proven that talent is indeed talent everywhere. Congratulations to the winning team.”

Excited about the outcome of the challenge, Chukuemeka Afigbo, outreach program manager at Google, stated, “the Google Cloud Developer Challenge is one of the many initiatives from Google for the developer community. It is our hope that this contest has helped increase adherence to global software development best practices while encouraging entrepreneurship amongst our software developers. I would like to congratulate the Tourbly team and encourage them not to rest on their laurels but to continue to improve on their application.”  

The Google Cloud Developer Challenge is a contest designed to motivate and reward entrants who develop applications that are based on Google’s Cloud Platform that are original and relevant to the region in which they live.

The challenge involves developers in six regions across the world, expected to submit their apps to one of two specially-designated competition categories: Enterprise/Small Business Solutions, Education, Not for Profit; and Social/Personal Productivity/Games/Fun.

The Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) and the MEST Incubator program provide training, investment and mentoring for aspiring technology entrepreneurs with the goal of creating globally successful companies that create wealth and jobs locally in Africa.


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