By Emma Okonji
The 6th Connect Nigeria SME e-Business Fair, which held recently at the Eko Hotel and Suites, Lagos, had over 6,000 participants in attendance, with over 5,000 Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and delegates from all over the world and 80 exhibitors and sponsors showcasing their goods and services.
In his opening remarks, the CEO of Connect Nigeria, Emeka Okafor, conveners of the event, commended the speakers and delegates for keying into the e-Business Fair 2018 vision assuring them that, in line with the objectives, they would acquire the requisite knowledge, information and ideas required to grow their businesses.
In addition, he expressed his appreciation and gratitude to sponsorsAITEO, NIRSAL, Payporte, Union Bank, Sigma Pensions, Air France KLM, Rack Centre among others for partnering them to bring Nigerian businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs up to speed in line with global practices and implored SMEs to take full advantage of new technology to grow their business.
The conference kicked off with a session titled, e-Business and the Growth of the Nigerian Economy anchored by the CEO of Payporte, Eyo Bassey, who talked about e-Commerce in Nigeria as an untapped space and encouraged Nigerians who are interested in e-Business not to hesitate as the market remains viable. He however warned that one must acquire experience to succeed in business and should dispense without dated methods and obsolete skills.
Head of Retail Segments at Union Bank, Paul Aseme, and VP Business Development West, Sigma Pensions, Mabel George, dwelt on embracing technology to grow business and invest in a proper business plan and proper accounting. The session was brought to a close by the Sales Manager, Air France-KLM, Akpan Ikoabasi.
At the second session sponsored by Rack Center, The Internet of Things, and How That Can Transform Your Business was deliberated upon by a panel session.
During the third session, former Minister of Aviation, Chief Osita Chidoka, shared key points on building a sustainable enterprise.
One of the major highlights of the event was the launch of â€œTOP 100 SMEs in Nigeria Campaignâ€ aÂ Connect Nigeria initiative in partnership with Union Bank. The initiative is aimed at celebrating emerging businesses involved in building sustainable enterprises and boosting employment.