Upcoming and young entrepreneurs in Nigeria were excited and inspired when IE University, a leading global higher institution based in Madrid and Segovia, Spain held its first African Venture Day in Lagos State with the theme, “Growth and Scalability in Business: Crafting a Winning Strategy”.
Put together to help further support startups dedicated to providing innovative digital based solutions to everyday problems faced by African businesses, the Lagos Venture Day commenced with a welcome address from the Lagos Consul General of Spain, Mr. Juan Antonio Moreda Otero, who said, “IE University, Nigeria and Spain are three clear dots joined by three lines which are entrepreneurship, knowledge and commitment”.
The spotlight of the event introduced startups who pitched their innovative solutions to the jury made up of leaders in the tech and finance industries including Associate Director of IE Business School; Hans Kristofer Munthe-kass, Founder of TrainQuarters Stephanie Obi, Social Impact and ESG Manager at Alithea Capital, Temilade Denton; Programme Head, Accion Venture Lab Ekene Agu and; the DeputyManaging Director of Afrinvest and Victor Ndukauba.
The five competing startups which had been selected based on their originality, financial viability and positive impact on major business challenges battled for the star prize of an all-expense paid trip to Spain to participate in a week long IE startup boot camp and the South Summit start-up conference in Spain, N5 million cash, $15,000 promotional credits courtesy Amazon Web Services and 50 per cent scholarship for any IE University’s High Impact Online Program (HiOP) of their choice.
Social Lender; an organisation which offers lending services to low-income earners who cannot provide collateral emerged winner of the Venture Day after being pitched by Mudiaga Ogboru. Monify, a platform which provides financial advisory services, emerged runner-up.
The audience was also given the power to select a people’s choice startup winner via a Twitter poll with Social Lender still emerging as winner.
Onyekachi Eke, Director of IE University (West Africa) and Sabine Yazbeck Director of IE University; (Middle East & Africa) shared the goals of IE which encompasses offering a dynamic, transformational learning environment that shapes the people who will go on to shape the world.
Speaking on whether the ideas from the Venture Day would profit Africa, Dr Amy Jadesimi said, Nigeria should be at the core of driving growth throughout Africa and young people are going to be at the forefront of that.