GITEX 2018: 407 Nigerians jostle for 10 sponsorship slots – NITDA

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Dr Pantami addressing investors at GITEX in Dubai World Trade Centre on Wednesday, October 11, 2017

The National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA, says it has received over 407 sponsorship applications from interested Nigerian start-ups vying to be sponsored to the GITEX Future Superstars, GFS, coming up on the 14 to 18 of October in Dubai, United Arab Emirate.

In a statement on Wednesday, the NITDA’s Head of Corporate Affairs and External Relations Unit, Hadiza Umar, said the agency planned to promote 10 startups to join their over 600 peers from over 45 countries at the Global Startups Movement in GITEX.

According to the statement, the 5-day event would focus on startups creating solutions addressing any of these problems: Smart Cities, Energy, Smart Construction, Healthcare, Education, Retail, Transport and Logistics.

The NITDA spokesperson also disclosed that Nigeria plans to promote three thematic activities this year.

“The activities are: the Nigerian Pavilion, the Startups Innovation Hub, and the Africa Investment Forum, AIF, being put together jointly by the Nigerian government through the NITDA and the UAE government through the DWTC, organisers of GITEX,” she added.

“The country’s tech-ambassadors are being carefully selected by a team that include officials of OIIE, innovation hubs and angel investors among others as part of the pre-selection processes and planning for Nigeria’s overall participation in GITEX 2018.

“Startups are a major feature of Nigeria’s participation to underscore NITDA’s agenda to expose the country’s budding tech startups ecosystem to global investors, mentors and venture capitalists.

“The event draws participation from over 140 countries every year and attracts more than 90 countries Pavilions and trade visitors in excess of 150, 000,” Mrs Umar noted.

Furthermore, during the inauguration of the GITEX LOC as well as the LOC for eNigeria recently, the statement quoted the Director General of the agency, Isa Pantami, as expressing his commitment towards technology promotion in the country’s IT industry.

Mr Pantami added that young people are a critical focus of NITDA’s agenda to develop the IT sector.

“We remain firm and committed to promoting technology deployment and building our local IT industry to world standard through participation in global events that further exposes the players to trends in the industry.

“NITDA’s remains committed to its mandate to build a technology ecosystem that thrives on indigenous manpower connected to the global IT community,” he noted.