An innovation ecosystem that will drive the adoption of disruptive technologies and support early-stage startups will save Nigeria over $100bn in foreign exchange and generate employment, stakeholders in the tech ecosystem have said.
The stakeholders spoke during the launch of Nigeria hardware ecosystem map held physically and virtually at Clintonel Innovation Centre in Aba, Abia State.
According to a statement, the Nigeria Hardware Ecosystem Map is an online platform that connects indigenous hardware, engineering and manufacturing companies to customers, investors, partners and end-users.
Some of the speakers were the President, Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria, Chinenye Mba-Uzoukwu; a board member, AfriLabs, Daniel Chinagozi; a board member, Innovation Support Network, Fayo Williams; the Founder, Shared Insights, Nkemdirim Ogbuaku; the Director, South-South South-East Angel Network, Uche Aniche; and the Founder, Clintonel Innovation Centre and Hardware Nigeria Community, Tochukwu Chukwueke.
They said there was a need to pay serious attention to developing the hardware sector, if the nation must experience meaningful development, job creation and poverty reduction.
According to the statement, the map collates data, understands the ecosystem, showcases players in the ecosystem, enhances collaboration, advertises hardware-related businesses, and facilitates the growth of the hardware ecosystem.
The CIC founder said the Nigerian Hardware Ecosystem Map was implemented by the centre with the goal of strengthening the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
According to him, Clintonel has trained over 600 young persons in computer aided design, computer aided manufacturing, renewable (solar) energy and entrepreneurship.
“We have trained over 1,000 secondary school students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics using indigenous STEM kits developed by Clintonel. Hardware startups incubated by Clintonel are now producing different indigenous products, employing several young persons and helping to reduce poverty in Nigeria,” he added.