Let's Go Local | SUNBIZ

Let’s Go Local: Mamanuca Cruises for I.T professional Narube

“I was fortunate to grow up in an environment where a lot of emphasis was placed on education and I along with my siblings were encouraged to work hard while in school,” he said.
30 Aug 2023 04:44
Let’s Go Local: Mamanuca Cruises for I.T professional Narube
South Sea Island in the Mamanuca Group. Inset: Penioni Narube says day cruises with the family to Tivua Island and South Sea Island in Mamanuca was one of his favourite travel experiences in Fiji.

Penioni Rakuro Narube has been an IT professional for 12 years. He uses his expertise in software engineering and passion for problem-solving to develop technological solutions in his line of work.

Originally from Cuvu village, Nadroga with maternal links to Nakelo, Tailevu, Mr Narube attended Veiuto Primary School, Yat Sen Secondary School and Suva Grammar School in Suva.

In 2011, he graduated from The University of the South Pacific with a degree in computer science and mathematics.

He says that education has always played a significant role in his life.

“I was fortunate to grow up in an environment where a lot of emphasis was placed on education and I along with my siblings were encouraged to work hard while in school,” he said.

“I was taught to always do your best at any and every task you are given and in all things commit your plans and works to God.”

Mr Narube’s career has taken him from Software Factory Limited, where he is currently the General Manager of Software Development, to Fiji-made social finance app, solé where he is the head of development.

On his involvement in solé, he says: “It’s not every day that you get to work on a worthy initiative that has the potential to positively impact our people.”

SunBiz recently spoke with the 34-year-old to learn more about his personal and professional journey, as well as his favourite places to eat and travel in Fiji.


What is your go-to local restaurant for a quick, delicious bite?

Happy Garden in Nabua was always my go-to place to eat while at university.

I still go there for a while from time to time.


Where do you take friends and visitors for a meal and to unwind?

When I’m not working, I unwind by spending family time at home with my wife and three girls. We take the girls out to Tom’s World sometimes.

I actually won a pair of sneakers at a 10-second game during one outing. That was pretty awesome.


What are your favourite travel destinations in Fiji?

I love taking the family on picnics in Deuba or trips to Kula WILD Adventure Park or the Big Bula Waterpark. Day cruises to Tivua or South Sea Island in Mamanuca are also great activities for the whole family.

Tivua Island

What are your top bucket list destinations in Fiji?

I have never visited the Yasawas or Kadavu. It would be great to visit these islands.

Yasawa Island

What makes Fiji an attractive destination for travel and to do business?

Our people.

Our natural Fijian hospitality and spirit. Nothing beats our Bula smile.

When you combine that same natural ability to connect with people and further equip that with education, upskilling and expertise in a specific industry, for example, in the area of technology, it makes for a very compelling business model.

Fijians entertain tourists, Fijians greet tourists with songs, Some staff of a Fijian resort.

What can you say about the tech sector in Fiji today? How has it evolved over the years you’ve spent working in the industry? 

In recent years it has been encouraging to see our local institutions gradually start to place more trust in locally built solutions.

In my experience, I’ve found that many times it’s best to look within for technological solutions to address issues that affect our people.

Solé for example is the first local fintech platform of its kind which was built for Fijians by Fijians and through this journey, it’s been great to see the support rendered by development partners and regulatory bodies to encourage this innovation.

There’s still room for growth in the industry and a lot of work is still needed to create an environment that motivates our local developers to remain in the country.

All in all the outlook is promising.


Feedback: jernese.macanawai@fijisun.com.fj


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