Unicorn to Commit $300m to Africa’s Digital Revolution

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Oluchi Chibuzor
The Unicorn group, organisers of the Africa TechMoney has disclosed that it has committed about $300 million over the next 10 years towards the Africa technology ecosystem space to solve the continent’s biggest challenges.

The company stated this at the first edition of the TechMoney conference, with a theme: “Africa TechMoney: Where tech and Money Meet,” held recently in Lagos.

The Chairman, Unicorn Group, Kola Abiola, who said digitalisation offers innovation and finance across Africa.
He also said the TechMoney and innovation summit was to support tech talent and start-ups to secure investment and become bankable, while adding it would inspire, educate and connect leaders from government, private sector, academia and entrepreneurs on the latest innovative and disruptive technologies.

According to him, “With a Nigerian youth population of 72 per cent, median age of 18.4 and an urban population estimated at 51.9 per cent with similar percentages continent wide, this initiative will provide much needed hope by creating world class solutions to African problems.
“This will in turn unlock the entrepreneurial potential of Africa’s youth and in summary create jobs of the future while ushering the continent into the fourth revolution,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Vice-president, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, in a speech delivered by Ambassador Adeyemi Dipeolu, said investment was critical in boasting technology development in Africa.

“Recognising that indigenous innovation is the fastest, cheapest and smartest way to solve challenges in the various sectors of the economy, the Nigerian government is building and supporting innovation hubs
“The Launchpad Hub which is expected to be completed and opened by the end of the year will cater to the technical needs of young student innovators who need the right environment to create disruptive ideas and find innovative solutions across all sectors. Our expectation is that the space will be a magnet for creative and dynamic thinking.

“The key thing then is that Nigeria and indeed other African countries must position their economies to take advantage of the huge opportunities that exist in digital technology and to mitigate the challenges that will most certainly arise.

On his part, the Deputy Governor, Lagos state, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, represented by Mr. Segun Adeniji, Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Science and Technology, said the current administration is determined in its plan to make the state a 21st century through transportation, education, education, technology and health.

“Innovation plays an important role in catch-up and growth in a global economy, we truly believe that state can leapfrog through technology and innovation,” he said.