Nakuru scribe ventures into online streaming
Monday, May 20, 2019 20:52
By FRANCIS MUREITHI
The founder of Nakuru TV, an online streaming site, Patrick Kinyua Maina, during the interview in his studio at Highway Towers in Nakuru town. PHOTO | FRANCIS MUREITHI
As devolution takes root, an enterprising youth in Nakuru town has turned the 14 devolved functions into an avenue to make money online by streaming live the activities through an online television platform.And if the demand of his services are anything to go by then there is no doubt he is making a killing by streaming live broadcast at a fee.The two-year-old venture of streaming local events is becoming the talk of the town as it is giving the residents real-time news on what is happening at their own backyard.He charges for the services on an hourly basis and the devolved unit, local companies, churches and individuals are some of its clients.International media organisation such Deutsche Welle of Germany has also tapped into his online TV station. Other Kenyans in the diaspora are able to holding their meetings online with their relatives back home on social issues such as dowry.
Nakuru TV is offering television broadcast from around Nakuru county via internet streaming live from the computer.Thanks to the station, viewers can watch local news, live sports on their laptops, tablets or on the smartphone wherever they are.Patrick Kinyua Maina, 30, popularly known as Prince in the media circles, is the man behind the TV streaming station that focuses on matters devolution.He says that the idea to start the online station came to him while in the bathroom.Kinyua says: “My ambition has always been to ensure the 14 functions of the devolved unit are well understood at the grassroots level but I realised the devolved unit did not have an outlet to provide information and many people still did not understand the concept of devolution and that is the space I snapped onto to start the online TV.”“I am passionate about information as I am a radio journalist by training. I have taken advantage of my training as a radio journalist to expand my audience and while I am there I have been able to use my skills to expand my horizons.”He added: “Most local news gets limited airtime and with devolution and everything managed at the county levels, so it made complete sense to start an online TV station for locals who could receive relevant information relating to their localities.”And never one to let the grass grow under his feet, Kinyua used his savings of Sh70,000 as seed capital to buy some of the sophisticated software and equipment from America to realise his ambitious ideas.“I started by buying my first software and later bought a customized laptop at Sh90,000 and I am still acquiring more equipment as my dream is to start the first ever internet TV station in Nakuru County,” says Kinyua.And from one software, his list of equipment is growing by the day and today they are worth more than Sh500,000.He says, “Nakuru TV ,whose headquarters are at seventh floor of Highway Towers building, is for the residents.”He says that although he has not broken even yet, he cannot complain as the venture is putting food on the table.“There is good money in this business. In my first three months of operation I was able to make Sh100,000 [in revenue] even before I acquired more equipment,” he says.Kinyua says he is disturbed millions of educated youth who studied Media and Communication at the universities and colleges are wasting their time on the internet watching movies and pornography.“My advise to such youth is to use their skills and set up online companies at the counties and make hay while the sun shines as national government disburses billions of shillings every year to the counties and part of that money is what they should be tapping into to create jobs instead of waiting for the white collar type,” said Mr Kinyua.The father of one says he charges between Sh20,000 and Sh40,000 for a live stream lasting between two and three hours.“With a turnover of about Sh500,000 in the first year of operation it means there is a bright future in this venture,” said Mr Kinyua.He says his rates are not fixed as the online concept is yet to gain ground in Nakuru County.“The rates could go as low as Sh15,000 on hourly rate depending on the function. If it is a launch of a product by a corporate body the crates are bound to change and if it is a church function or youth showcasing their talents the rates are a bit low as my ambition also is to ensure talent growth in Nakuru County,” he said.He started with a single employee and today he works with nine colleagues including graduates from local universities.But the fact that they do not draw huge viewership as yet is not a big concern, as the station is still growing.