The Gage Company has concluded Co-Create 2022 International Tech Exhibition, bringing together some of Africa’s biggest tech innovators, at Landmark Event Centre in Lagos, to celebrate the collaborative processes that help realise phenomenal solutions, and nurture the growth of the tech ecosystem.
It was attended by tech experts, vendors, and government representatives. Inuwa Kashifu Abullahi, Director-General of the National Information Technology Development Agency, (NITDA), represented the Minister for Communications and Digital Economy, Prof Isa Ali Pantami and Tubosun Anak, Special Adviser, Innovation and Technology, Lagos.
Inuwa Abullahi made a welcome speech and argued that innovation goes beyond providing solutions. It also involves the commercialisation and impact of the solution.
Innovation is the process of taking an idea and making it a reality. Although many people believe innovation and invention are the same, innovation is creating a market or democratizing access to your product, solution or service.
He said that the tech sector must be more creative in its solutions to address the many problems facing the country.
“In Nigeria, we have many problems and we need more innovations to solve them. Because you cannot survive alone, these kinds of collaborations that we are having today can lead to this. Everything is about the ecosystem.”
Abdullahi stated that the current administration is committed collaboration with innovators in technology, and to the implementation of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy(NDEPS) are in process. He said the Federal Executive Council (FEC) has given approval for the Ministry of Communications and agencies under its supervision to co-create solutions with the ecosystem in areas of procurement, IP & Patenting and giving Incentives to encourage the startups.
Tunbosun said that the Lagos Government was ready to transform the state into a technology hub as soon as possible during the welcome address.
“In the past two to three years, we’ve been able to do some things in the ecosystem to drive the amount of activity in terms of funding,” he said. He also talked about his work with the Lagos Science, Research and Innovation Council.
The Lagos Science, Research and Innovation Council, he said, is “primarily focused on driving science research and innovation in Lagos with the goal of increasing the number of patents that are coming out of Lagos and Nigeria as a whole.”
He added that from February 2020 to date the council has funded “about 60 startups with grand sizes between 9 to 10 thousand dollars.”
Speaking on one of the Co-Create 2022 panels tagged “Technology, Regulations and Control,” both Abdullahi and Alake agreed that the ecosystem cannot experience growth without regulations. They also suggested that the regulation should be formulated with participation from all parties in the tech industry.
“We believe that regulation is not to stifle innovation, but rather to unlock opportunities. Whatever we do, we don’t do in isolation,” the DG said. “We work with the ecosystem to co-create policies and co-create the regulations. We do everything together. We believe we can achieve greater things together. That is why we are here to work with you and to co-create our future”
The expo was a 2-day platform that allowed companies to grow their network, generate news leads and increase brand awareness.
Co-Create 2022 was launched prior to the Gage Awards which will be held Saturday, June 11, 2022. It also featured a fireside chat with tech influencers, innovators, and policymakers to learn, share, and address critical issues in Nigeria’s tech ecosystem.