Before joining Hakili, Ibrahim with 2 other of his friends started Maliweb.net in 2001 which is a news portal for Malian diaspora living outside the African continent. Through this portal they were offering website consultation for local companies in Mali. Ibrahim later founded Blue Vision LLC which is an IT consulting firm. Moustapha started the Niger Think Tank in 2003 with a goal to bring all the bright minds from Niger to exchange ideas on how to solve some of the problems in the area of technology, agriculture , fishing and industry amongst others. Moustapha then joined force with Ibrahim to try to conquer the Niger market in the IT area.
By joining forces with Hakili and past experiences in extending services in Africa, the four partners formed a dynamic, highly trained and enthusiastic team with over 30 years of combined expertise in Software development and IT in general. The underlining foundation was how to make Africa the next IT hub. They decided to look for local IT talents that were going to be their eyes and ears on the ground. They came quickly to realize that there weren't enough IT professionals, and even if there were, they lacked the training to be globally competitive. By the end of 2009, the gang of four decided to take a step back and think of ways on how to boost the competencies of existing IT professionals.
In September 2009 they decided to create an organization:Coders4Africa, that will become the original source that provides African programmers and developers a gateway to free high quality training and certification in the main technologies and platforms that currently dominate the software development industry. The main objective is to provide free training for 1000 African Software developers and programmers by the year 2016. The vision became later to create and support a Pan-African community of competent, internationally certified IT professionals focused on developing the IT tools for African Agriculture, Business, Education, Health Care, Government and general Social needs.
The strategy is to leverage the rapid development and evolution of the wireless communications and Internet access platform in Africa to educate, certify and continue to support a 1000+ cadre of IT professionals.
After conducting a couple of Tech conferences in Senegal and Mali respectively in December 2009 and January 2010, the initial four co-founders decided to diversify the team in order to bring more values to all African Software developers and a spirited Pan African movement. After doing a month of research they found Kwame Andah from Ghana who became the fifth founder of Coders4Africa. Kwame Andah was helping the US Department of Energy’s Princeton Plasma Physics Lab and marketing their science bowl software app through his company interactive web marketing company Kreative Waves. At the time he was creating web sites with search engine optimization for African owned businesses. There was a press release written by Princeton University about Kwame which got picked up by a major African newspaper titled ‘African Software Developer Excels In US’. This was a tool written in Java which allows for the administration of science and math competitions. It was Kwame’s goal to introduce the tool to African schools for their educational and commercial science competitions. As a way to give back to his community, Kwame felt this tools would improve and streamline the amount of time it took to administer academic competitions in Ghana.
Amadou got wind of this article and Kwame’s contact information and gave him a phone call one evening, during which he asked him to join the initiative. It was a no-brainer for Kwame as he found it very ingenious and joined as the Director of Marketing and Communications. The rest is history. His inclusion was a huge deal because it brought in and galvanized hundreds of English speaking IT professionals that were not present in French speaking countries such as Senegal and Mali.
After registering Coders4Africa as a US Non profit organization, the now 5 co-founders brought on board Vincent Muller (Co-Founder / Communications Manager), a French citizen residing in Canada. Back in 2006, as he was still a student, Vincent Muller worked with a friend who created a website creation agency in France. Given the fact that Vincent’s friend was originally from Senegal and knew the country well, he came up with the idea of working with websites developers based in Senegal on a contract basis. He had plans of creating a company that would involve Canadians; those originally from Africa in particular, in solidifying the economic ties between Canada and Africa. Convinced that knowledge transfer and capacity building were the most sustainable solutions, his goal was to help Canadians create small businesses, train people and settle or re-settle on the continent. In 2009, Vincent Muller and Amadou Daffé met through a common friend. They had several discussions about politics, economy and development in Senegal and Africa. A few months later, Amadou told him about Coders4Africa and its goal of training IT professionals who would eventually contribute significantly to social innovation and economic development in Africa. The vision of C4A were in line with Vincent’s idea of economic development. He was introduced to the rest of the team by Amadou Daffé, and decided to join the team as Communication Manager.