As part of the partnership with Microsoft 4Afrika, Co-creation Hub (CcHub) has became a BizSpark Network Partner. Thus, the Startup community of CcHub and the bigger startup community of Nigeria are invited to join the program and benefit from it to boost their businesses.
The BizSpark program was launched in 2008 around the world to support startups by providing software, support, and visibility. Today the BizSpark network has 50,000 startups in 100+ countries, and 2500 partners.
The BizSpark program is free and offers the following:
- Software: Full-featured Microsoft software development tools, platform technologies, and server products to build software applications. Startups also get Windows Azure benefits enabling them to quickly build, deploy & manage web application. More info online
- Support: Startups get access to investors, advisors and valuable offers to help run their business, find talent & obtain financing. Startups also get access to technical, product training & support.
- Visibility: Opportunity to achieve marketing visibility to help promote their business. They can be nominated to be Featured Startups at the worldwide level and get global visibility.
To be eligible for BizSpark, you need to meet the following criteria:
- Have a privately held business that is less than 5 years
- Have at least one software development project
- Have a revenue less than $1M.
Does your startup qualify for BizSpark? Send an email with the name of your startup and your preferred email address to email@example.com and also register at www.bizspark.com to get started.
So far, over 1000 African startups have joined BizSpark since its launch. Here are some testimonials from Nigeria, Uganda and Tunisia:
“In addition to all the software we get for free, BizSpark saved us the budget we have been using for hosting. We deployed three instance of Linux OS on Windows Azure and we have been able to focus more on our business and stopped worrying about our server going offline and thanks to BizSpark, we don’t worry much about the cost of software or hosting. In addition to BizSpark, we are now in contact with Microsoft experts giving us the right technical support to develop our applications.”
~ Olufuwa Tayo, Jobs in Nigeria, NIGERIA
“Starting a software company requires not only developers, but also good infrastructure making the whole investment too costly for a start up. access.mobile Uganda Ltd is privileged to have been among the first Ugandan companies to be enrolled into the BizSpark program in 2013. We have grown from one Solution to four, with more coming, all hosted under BizSpark and with continual support from the Microsoft experts.”
~ Jane Mukulu, Access Mobile Inc, UGANDA
“BizSpark gave us access to Azure services for scalability, an easy going platform, allows to run several virtual machines with different technologies supported. The support is really reactive and provides high value advices. In addition, by being selected as a featured startups gave us visibility, exposure and credibility in front of big partners. In addition, by becoming part of the supported startups of the MIC, we benefited from trainings and events connecting us with a bigger network, locally and internationally.”
~ Amine Chouaieb, Chifco, TUNISIA
The delivery of quality healthcare remains a major challenge in Nigeria. Towards this effort, the Social Change Lab for Health is giving you the opportunity to be a change agent that will contribute to tackling the most pressing issues in healthcare delivery.
From now until Friday, 7th of March 2014, we are calling for new or already existing ideas that will address identified priority areas in healthcare delivery using technology. These priority areas include:
- Better collect and seamlessly distribute patient’s medical information wherever care is needed to ensure more effective engagement with healthcare providers.
- Develop targeted and innovative platforms that give citizens the opportunity to access and share relevant health information to properly manage their conditions and interactions with the Nigerian health system.
- Facilitate more effective platforms that give citizens the capability to access general and specialized healthcare is a way that is direct, appraised and operational.
- Enable the use of more effective and comprehensive workflows that encourage better communication between health professionals within the hospitals to facilitate better service for patients.
HOW IT WORKS
Simply submit your idea(s) HERE for a team of highly skilled people to help you develop it further. By entering your idea in, you stand the chance getting support in pre-seed funding to develop the idea further or to scale an already existing idea.
Don’t forget to to enter your idea by clicking HERE; we look forward to your participation. Feel free to forward this link to other people in your network who may be interested.
After 48hours and barely any sleep, a grand prize winner has emerged at the Culture Shift 3 hackathon. The hackathon, which ran from Friday 21 till Sunday 23 February 2014, saw six teams gather at Co-creation Hub Nigeria to build solutions to enable the creative industry using technology. Each team stood a chance of winning a grand prize of N800,000 subject to them satisfying criteria set by the judges — a clear need, innovativeness, quality, commitment and potential impact.
..and the grand prize winner of Culture Shift 3, going home with N800,000 is: Team Mainframe with Opomulero, a platform to give Yoruba-centric consumers high quality audiovisual content across the world.
The runners up are:
First runner-up: Team Parresia Publishers with a platform with addictive user experience for people to spend 2hrs+ on their platform, immersed in the books they provide.
Second runner-up: Team Fetch Insights, developing an interactive digital image bank to connect the creative industry with their target audience.
The other participating teams include:
Team Chocolate City will build a platform to better engage with their teeming fans online using quality, targeted content.
Team Tae Afrika platform will allow fashionistas to provide feedback, inspire, pre‐order and better engage with their clothing range.
Team Nigerian Film Corporation want to make it super easy for you to learn the art of film production through an e-learning platform.
From all of us at CcHUB, we want to say congratulations to all the winners, and a big thank you to our partners, British Council and Snook, all the talented hackathon participants, our judges, Subomi Plumptre, Kunle Olaifa, Tunji Eleso, Lynsey Smith and Akin Adesola, and you for being part of this event and making it a success.
This weekend (from Friday 21st to Sunday 23rd of February, 2014), 50 technologists, marketing and business experts will engage with representatives from six of Nigeria’s top creative companies to build innovative technology tools to grow Nigeria’s cultural and creative sector at Culture Shift III.
Sponsored by British Council and run by Co-Creation Hub and Snook, Culture Shift is now in it’s third iteration in Nigeria after successful events in March 2012 and December 2012.
At Culture Shift III, six teams will build working prototypes of innovative technology platforms working alongside 6 top firms from Nigeria’s cultural and creative sector namely Mainframe Film Production (Film), Chocolate City (Music), Tae Wool Limited (Fashion), National Film Corporation (Film), Parresia Publishers Limited (Book Publishing) and Fetch Strategic Insights (Photography).
The teams will have 48 hours at the hackathon to:
- Build a working prototype of the solution
- Build a route-to-market strategy
- Build a sustainability strategy
The six solutions were shortlisted from a range of ideas generated at an idea hack in December 2013 which involved 12 creative companies. The ideas are:
- Yoruba-centric film platform (Mainframe Film Production): A platform that provides access for Yoruba centric consumers to high quality audiovisual content both in the homeland and in the Diaspora.
- Clothing production process engagement app (Tae Wool Limited): A platform that allows our customers to provide feedback, inspire, pre‐order and better engage with our products and production processes.
- Nigerian Film Institute Online (National Film Corporation): A platform for all Nigerians with internet access providing the choice of learning through technology the art of film making.
- African/Nigerian Digital Image Bank (Fetch Strategic Insights & Co): An African/Nigerian specific image bank showcasing outstanding & original contemporary creative visions/ideas e.g digital art works, food & events, entertainment, social trends, raves-of-the-moment, etc
- Audience engagement platform (Chocolate City): A platform that pushes entertainment content Music, Videos, News (Blog posts), Gallery Updates to audiences across all platforms to sustain interest, engagement and ultimately readership
- Book lovers community (Parresia Publishers Limited): An online community of book readers and enthusiasts to influence content as well as to better target the marketing of our books and other products.
The completed prototypes will be presented at a Show and Tell event starting at 4pm on the 23rd of February, 2014 at the CcHub.
The top 3 solutions at the end of the weekend, as selected by a panel of expert judges, will be awarded cash prizes of N800,000 (1st Prize), N500,000 (2nd Prize) and N300,000 (3rd Prize) respectively towards completion of their Minimum Viable Products.
Culture Shift serves a dual role of exposing the Nigerian creative industry to innovative technology solutions to enhance their output and reach while also exposing Nigerian technologists to opportunities to create solutions for our thriving cultural and creative sector.
Follow the hackathon at #CultureShift on Twitter
Don’t miss out on the events we have lined up for Social Media Week at Co-creation Hub from 19 -21 February 2014. Here’s a full list of #SMWLagos events at CcHUB:
- As Nigeria prepares for the general elections in February 2015, find out What’s New in Tech & Elections on Wednesday, 19 February 2014 from 10am with CcHUB and EiE Nigeria. The session will be geared towards exploring various innovations around citizen and institutional engagement using technology to improve the electoral process. Reserve a seat here.
- Attend #Userday: Technology for Health from 3pm on Wednesday, 19 February 2014 as we showcase a range of technology tools built for Nigeria to make our healthcare delivery systems more efficient and effective. Save a spot here.
- Let’s promote civic applications that are driving institutional reforms and also citizen engagement. Join us for Open Data and Social Media: Amplifying the Voices on Thursday, 20 February 2014 from 11am. The session will bring policy experts, tech enthusiasts, data analysts and journalists together to understand the relevance of open data to these platforms and how more data transparency from government can scale these solutions. Register to attend here.
- Understand how analytics can be used to improve your business strategy in Connecting Business Digital Strategy with Analytics this Thursday, 20 February 2014 at 1pm. Sign up here to attend.
- Join us on Friday, 21 February 2014 for The Connected Kids – Technology and Learning in the 21st Century at the CcHub Mobile Experience Centre from 2pm. We’ll demonstrate how social media and technology are changing the learning environment for the newer generation; showing the effect of these tech-tools as it applies to Nigerian kids. Book a seat here.