In the bustling city of Addis Ababa, Samrawit Tarekegn is aiming to solve a common struggle faced by working parents: the need for affordable, high-quality childcare. In response to this challenge, Samrawit has founded Mogzit In-Home Care, a unique platform that connects professional nannies with parents seeking reliable childcare services.
This innovative business model draws inspiration from successful gig economy platforms in sectors such as ride-hailing, food delivery, and holiday rentals. Now in its second year of operation, Mogzit currently receives more than 20 nanny requests per day and is poised to become a leading player in the sector.
The Spark of an Idea
Samrawit received her bachelor’s degree in Electrical & Computer Engineering from the University of Gonder. She later traveled to India to pursue her master’s degree in Control & Instrumentation Engineering from Delhi Technological University. It was during this time that the journey of Mogzit began in 2020, when Samrawit witnessed firsthand the ease of digitized systems.
“Inspired by what I experienced, my initial thought was to work on something that intersects technology and professionalism in Ethiopia,” said Samrawit.
On returning home, Samrawit’s observation and research led her to uncover a real-world problem faced by people around her.
“As the youngest child in my family, I witnessed my older sisters, who are married and passionate about their careers, struggling to find reliable and consistent childcare when they returned to work after giving birth,” Samrawit explained. “One of my sisters was forced to leave her child with neighbors whenever she went to work.”
Aiming to help mothers return to their careers while also providing a reliable childcare system, Samrawit founded Mogzit, which she calls “uber for nannies”.
Mogzit has Samrawit as its CEO and founder, and co-founders Tigist Alene, Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Rahel Tarekegn, Chief Operating Officer (COO), and Biniam Asnake, Chief Technology Officer (CTO), on its team.
Accessible via the web, Mogzit’s services currently include the provision of part-time nannies, nannies-on-demand, and night nanny service. The part-time nanny service offers supervisory and custodial care for children on a part-time basis. These nannies are booked on a monthly basis.
Their Nannies-On-Demand service caters to more urgent or unplanned needs. For example, when families have to leave for various purposes over the weekend, they can utilize the on-demand service.
The third service is the Night Nanny service. Similar to part-time nannies, night nannies are booked on a monthly basis and cater to parents’ kids during the night.
“This is especially helpful for parents who work at night or for mothers who pursue multiple jobs, keeping them away from home,” added Samrawit.
Mogzit also provides non-medical care, healthcare that does not involve administering medicines, by onboarding nurses as nannies for both kids and other elderly individuals requiring health professional attention.
In addition, Mogzit is working on providing a home tutoring service where children can benefit from both care and educational lessons. These programs aim to develop children’s social skills, making learning an integral part of the care they receive at home.
Further boosting its service expansion and overall growth, Mogzit has recently joined the Mesirat Program, a partnership between the Mastercard Foundation and Gebeya Inc. that aims to empower 100 entrepreneurs in Ethiopia by providing them with their own multi-sided gig marketplaces.
“We have a big dream with Mesirat. We plan to create 10,000 job opportunities in the next five years. Legal aspects, enhancing the platform, as well as operational and marketing operations, are being supported by Mesirat to help us reach this goal,” said Samrawit.
Mogzit aims to provide a variety of childcare solutions that cater to the individual preferences and requirements of families. From planning and supervising activities, preparing meals, helping with homework, tidying children’s areas, and even administering medicine with parents’ consent, the nannies from Mogzit are trained to handle a broad spectrum of tasks.
One unique aspect of Mogzit is its focus on thoroughly vetting all nannies and provides a guarantee for the workforce it provides. The company collaborates with vocational centers such as Abebech Gobena Vocational Training Center that train nannies, subjecting candidates to evaluations including phone and in-person interviews. The nannies must pass tests, sign a contract, and undergo additional training in child psychology before they are listed on the platform.
Parents can conveniently browse through the extensive list of nannies and tutors on the platform. Currently, Mogzit has onboarded over 350 nannies, each equipped with a profile.
The profile provides a comprehensive overview of their professional and personal aspects. It includes essential details like the nanny’s name, location, type of service, pricing, age, language proficiency, and years of experience. The schedule availability is laid out for parents to ascertain if it aligns with their needs.
Moreover, the profile highlights the nanny’s personality, teaching capabilities, and outside interests. It features a personal statement, educational background, proficiency in subjects, and the age group they can cater to. Additionally, the hobbies section provides a glimpse into the nanny’s personal life, helping parents choose a nanny who can truly resonate with their children’s needs and interests.
After parents find a service provider they like, they can book them for an interview without leaving the platform.
“Following the booking, our team arranges an in-person or virtual interview in our presence to go over the needs of the parent as well as the services to be provided by the nanny. If an agreement is reached, a legal contract is signed between the two,” said Samrawit.
The fees for hiring nannies are decided by Mogzit, depending on the experience, education, skills, and other factors of the nanny. Prices for hiring part-time nannies start at 3500 birr per month, while the cost of the on-demand service depends on the hours of work requested.
In its pricing structure, Mogzit implements a service fee. When a contract is signed with any service provider through the platform, parents are subject to a service fee that is equivalent to 30% of the nanny’s first monthly salary.
“We only charge this one-time payment, and it is paid by the parent,” said Samrawit.
“Currently, Mogzit is actively registering college graduates in Clinical Nursing, Social Work, and Psychology onto our platform, thereby expanding our workforce. Such graduates can onboard Mogzit and join us if they meet the criteria,” she added.
Ensuring Safety and Quality
Mozit operates in a business that comes with a set of complex issues. Finding qualified nannies that meet the demand and ensuring safety and security were some of the main obstacles that stood in the way of the startup. However, the team was able to overcome these problems.
“We vet, coach, and train nannies, which provides a guarantee for the parents. In addition, Mogzit also takes care of the safety of its nannies when they are assigned jobs. We notify a nearby police station about the employment, and the contract between the parent and nanny is submitted to the police station by the parents,” said Samrawit.
Further, Mogzit is working on adding a live chat feature that enables parents to communicate with their children and nannies as well as send videos.