Professionals, students and stakeholders in the technology sector gathered at the Civic Centre for the maiden edition of The Nigeria International Technology Exhibition & Conference, NITEC.
The two day event saw distinguished speakers and panellists from varying technology related professions, discussing the role of disruptive technologies in catapulting the African Continent’s GDP.
Mr Okeremi Yele, CEO, Precise Financial Systems, who was one of the speakers present at NITEC 2016 gave an insightful speech about the ever changing nature of technology, and the need to constantly evolve in order to remain relevant.
To remain relevant requires constantly disrupting the status quo. “Today’s world of technology is about disruptions and it has now come to the point where disruptors are now getting disrupted.” Mr Okeremi said while reminding all present that in the world of technology, nothing remains static for long and no one remains king forever. Market leaders can easily be overthrown by new businesses with better solutions, hence the need to always improve.
Speaking on the situation of Nigeria, he pointed out that Nigerians are more of consumers of technology than creators and that to boost the Nation’s GDP, Nigeria has to move beyond being consumers to producing something of value that can be exported. “Until Africa gets its act together we’ll continue to export primary goods and import finished goods.”
In order to get to the level where Nigeria can begin to provide value to the world, technology start-ups and great ideas out of Nigeria by Nigerians need to be supported, not just by the Government but also by established companies. He stressed the need for start-ups to ensure that above all they do, beyond trying to make profits, that they make effort to provide value by solving a problem that has no solution yet.
“Once people feel pain, they naturally gravitate to a pain reliever. Once your business is able to provide relief, you will get followers.”
He concluded by reminding the students and founders of start-ups present that the future of Nigeria rests on them and to make that future a bright one they have to shun the need to conform because no one ever became a disruptor by conforming.
Juliet Ehimuan-Chiazor, Country Manager, Google; Tunde Cooker, MD, Rack Centre were among the numerous speakers at NITEC 2016.
Some of the side attractions at NITEC 2016 included tech games, ethical hacking competitions, exhibition of new tech products and also an opportunity to Network and exhibit.
Start-ups also got a chance to give a presentation on what their businesses are about. Some of the start-ups included: Red Bank, a blood finding service; Jara Mobil; Location Forms; Eazy Hire; and Beats Traffic.
NITEC was made possible through partnership with public and private organizations like Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC), Nigeria Information Technology Agency (NITDA), Airtel Nigeria, amongst numerous others and will be held annually.