Determined to further deepen its relationship with African technology startups, Microsoft has announced an initiative that will offer six months mentorship for 20 teams of technology startups from Nigeria.
The initiative, called #WINsiders4good Fellowship, is a Microsoft programme for Nigerian technology entrepreneurs, but in partnership with Co-Creation Hub, an institution located in Yaba, Lagos, where technology startups are mentored and supported under intensive incubation process.
The partnership with Co-Creation Hub is meant to open opportunities to Nigerian entrepreneurs who have brilliant ideas that could be developed into viable solutions that would address social and economic challenges in the society.
A team of technical experts from Microsoft has arrived the country to commence the selection process and the training of 20 teams of technology startups with 20 great ideas that could address social and economic challenges of the country. The application was opened September 21 and closes October 10, 2016.
Director of Software Engineering, Microsoft Corp, Bambo Sofola, said WINsiders4Good would focus on how to use technology to solve complex problems.
“We have thousands of Windows Insiders in Nigeria, and tens of thousands across Africa. We want to collaborate more closely with them and other Windows users to make this a truly international product. One in seven Africans is Nigerian, computer usage is soaring, and tech centres like Yaba represent a manifestation of that growth. We think it is a great time and place to learn from like-minded techies and entrepreneurs who are solving complex problems and creating opportunities in Lagos and greater Nigeria,” Sofola stated.
Entrepreneurs who qualify for the fellowship programme will receive Microsoft hardware, software and six months of tailored technical mentorship to help bring their innovative ideas to life, while also allowing them to collaborate with the world’s largest community of people who use simple technology to solve problems.
Confirming this, Sofola stated that “Microsoft and CcHUB will connect entrepreneurs to a global community of people like them, prioritize and fix the technical issues that can hinder them from reaching their goal, provide mentors for technical and strategic questions for six months, and provide hardware and software to bring their ideas to life.”
Co-Founder, Co-Creation Hub, Femi Longe, commended Microsoft for that initiative and partnership, which he said would go a long way in bringing out the best from Nigerian technology startups through mentorship. He noted that the future of young Nigerians is in technology and there is every need to create platforms that will help them access and conquer their future needs and challenges.
“Collaborating with Microsoft will allow entrepreneurs across Nigeria to expand their possibilities, while exposing them to other entrepreneurs in the global space, which will eventually increase their competitive chances,” Longe said.