West Africa This Week: Startup Event Glimpses [June 25-30, 2018]

By  |  July 1, 2018

West Africa has been significantly thriving startup-wise, and this week, we saw notable events on the scene. In case you missed it, and while the rest of Africa buzzed with conclaves and developments, the western part of the continent saw these events.

Nigeria: WhoGoHost and Media Panache Collaborate to Impact SMEs at BABE in Lagos

Small and medium scale business owners from Lagos and other regions convened at the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NIRA) complex to learn how to build a successful online business at the second edition of Building a Business Empire (BABE) in Lagos. The event was the brainchild of Nigeria’s leading indigenous hosting solutions platform, WhoGoHost, in collaboration with Public Relations company, Media Panache Nigeria, had more than 100 emerging entrepreneurs from different sectors in attendance.

Kemi Adepoju, the Business Development Head, kick-started the class by introducing the attendees to the business core of NIRA as an organization and the reason every business should register under the.ng domain platform. She remarked that “The dot ng (.ng) domain is our local domain, and we must support it by putting our businesses on that platform.”

Ghana: Women in Tourism Summit

To strengthen the enabling environment of Ghana, support the women in the tourism industry and provide tourism enterprise for SMEs, the Ministry of Tourism, Arts, and Culture of Ghana targets to secure a World Bank loan of USD 40 Mn by the end of 2018 through the International Development Association. This was disclosed by the Minister, Mrs. Catherine Abelema Afeku in the Women Tourism Summit, an event tailored by the group Women in Tourism in partnership with African Tourism Partners. The event was organized to identify impactful programs that could be adopted to leverage tourism as a drive for mainstreaming women’s role in the Ghanaian tourism sector. Catch up on it here.

Nigeria: Philanthropist Felix King Endows Widow Grant of USD 500 K

There still are communities in Nigeria were widows are ill-treated and not having access to funds that would enable them to start small businesses for basic livelihood. Felix King becomes the savior of Nigerian widows with his initiative Widows Economic Progress Meetings (WeProgress) through which he granted USD 500 K fund sum. In a bid to transform these disadvantaged widows into small business owners, Felix King created a 10 to 20 woman meeting groups system to which he will be circulating funds systematically, hereby availing them the chance to generate money for themselves and their families. Read more here.

Nigeria: UN World MSME Day:  SMEDAN Commemorates, Encourages Youths

In the spirit of United Nations’ World MSME Day on the 27th, the Director-General of SMEDAN, Dr. Dikko Radda, in an event to herald the yearly conclave, urged Nigerian youths to start their own businesses and become financially liberal. He also affirmed that Small and Medium Enterprises Agency of Nigeria has the mandate to develop and promote SMEs in Nigeria. Commemorating the UN World MSME Day, Dikko said the event would be used in resetting youths’ mindset towards entrepreneurship while considering the present impediments of youth unemployment and un-employability confronting them. Speaking at the commemorative event, Dikko noted there is increasing recognition of the role SMEs have to play in the development of the country’s economy. Look it up here. 

Nigeria: MSME Clinic Launched by VP Osinbajo in Oyo State

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo was in Ibadan, Oyo State on 25th June to launch the much awaited Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Clinic, on which occasion he informed that the establishment of SMEs is believed and wired to make regulatory agencies that impact small businesses close to them. Represented by Tola Johnson, the VP said that MSME clinics had enabled regulatory agencies to access better understanding of the blockades SMEs are faced with and have caused them to take steps the curb the menace the situation brings about. Speaking earlier, the Governor of Oyo State, Abiola Ajimobi, pledged his support and that of his administration to the sector. More information available here.  

Ghana: Government Holds Presidential Pitch

On Monday, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo launched a competition on business ideas that were tailored to stimulate the revolution of entrepreneurship in a bid to drive economic growth. Tagged as the “Presidential Pitch”, the competition will be cooking and enhancing the relevant atmosphere that will support Ghanaian indigenous startups. In Accra, the President of Ghana reiterated that his administration is committed to the growth of SMEs by creating a business-friendly environment where these enterprises will thrive, create jobs and better the country’s economy. At the completion, among the 10 young entrepreneurs that pitched their business ideas, a 19-year-old lady from Gwollu in West Sissala District, Vanessa Aisha Limman, came top and received a GH 50,000 sum, to which the President added GH 25,000.

Nigeria: Vibranium Valley Tech Hub Launched in Lagos

Venture Garden Group collaborated with Vice President Osinbajo to launch the largest tech hub in Sub-Saharan Africa, called Vibranium Valley. Osinbajo said “We are here to commission the Vibranium Valley. We are told that the hub houses 30 tech  companies and has the capacity to house 50 more companies and about the largest tech campus in Sub-Saharan Africa”. Bunmi Akinyemiju, the Chief Executive Officer of Venture Group, said that VGG desired that her Vibranium Valley would be the stimulator of collaboration with policymakers and other stakeholders. Akinyemiju called for a technological ecosystem in Nigeria for solutions to toughest national issues with the aid of technology. He added that VGG was focused on leveraging on innovative technology to create African solutions to African problems.  Her is the full story

 Second Commemoration of United Nations’ World MSME Day

In what appears to be an almost-everyday custom for the United Nations, 27th June of every year was declared to be the World Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Day. On the same day as this last year, we celebrated the maiden of this event, and today, we commemorate the necessity and impact MSME’s have on the economy and society.

West African countries equally joined other member states to mark this event and give MSMEs in their nations voice.

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