Over the years, technology in Africa has spanned beyond what it used to be and the interest in the technology scene in the continent has grown tremendously, with Lagos at the center of attraction for some of the most renowned international investors. From the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative to Google Ventures, Seedstars World and YCombinator, there’s been a magnetic pull towards the exploration of the local tech scene in Nigeria.
Now we are set to welcome 500 Startups’ Geeks on a Plane – an exclusive group of startups, investors, tech junkies and executives touring the world to learn about evolving technology demands worldwide. They will be touring Africa in March and will be in Lagos, Nigeria from March 19th 2017 to March 23rd 2017. 500 Startups would be bringing a number of tech insiders to Lagos, Nigeria through the GOAP (Geeks on a Plane) initiative.
Silicon Yaba – home to some of Nigeria’s newest, biggest and fastest growing tech companies and popularly known to be the Nigeria’s version of Silicon Valley, is organizing a three-way conversation between itself, Silicon Valley, and the wider ecosystem. Silicon Yaba Veterans will sit with Silicon Valley Insiders to discuss challenges, and share war-stories in overcoming these issues.
This would be in a unique town hall-style setting and the agenda would be to take a critical look at two of the most important areas, essential to local ecosystem-building – Infrastructure and Talent Growth.
The event is set to explore the possibility of building a functional infrastructural framework that can ensure rapid improved access (connectivity, mobility, services) for teeming Nigerians everywhere in order to preserve the early successes of the tech ecosystem. It is also aimed at confronting the problem of growing a pool of talent that can snowball the local tech ecosystem while exploring other existing opportunities to develop this talent pool.
The event, set to be attended by top startup reps and tech veterans in Nigeria as well as some of Silicon Valley’s finest is aimed at building an important bridge to foster key learning’s exchange for both ecosystems, from which stronger bonds of understanding can be built.
Event Date: Tuesday, March 21, 2017
Venue: Co-Creation HUB, 6th Floor, 294 Herbert Macaulay Road, Yaba, Lagos.
Time: 11:45 am – 02:00 pm
NB: There are only 10 Open Eventbrite Community spaces (hand-picked from reservations). For more information on how to register, visit https://siliconyabatownhall.eventbrite.com
Thanks to everyone who signed up or nominated someone, the first DIGnified class is set to kick-off next month. Over a 4 week period, older people aged 55 and above will be introduced to key digital skills that are vital for staying connected in today’s world.
Here’s an overview of the applications we received. You can also download the pdf version here.
There’s lots of talk about generation Z (A.K.A digital natives), and millennials, and how pervasive technology has become in their lives. From entertainment, to education, and simple conveniences (transportation, commerce) the impact and benefits of technology are boundless. Nevertheless, a whole generation is at risk of being marginalised, or worse, taken undue advantage of. DIGnified aims to bridge this gap by providing participants with the skills and know-how relevant to this digital age.
DIGnified is a 4-week programme designed to introduce older people (aged 55 and above) to digital technology. Participants can be enrolled for a series of courses each quarter, bringing them up to speed with today’s tools, at their own pace. With a series of courses, starting from the basics to advanced concepts, participants will be exposed to an immersive, hands-on curriculum. Sessions will hold thrice a week, for 4 weeks straight in Lagos and Abuja.
Do you wish your parents were more comfortable with technology? and could connect with you via Skype or Whatsapp? Have you ever typed an SMS or email for your parents and wish they knew how to do so on their own? Does technology appear intimidating and confusing, and leave you wondering where to start? Sign them up for DIGnified, and grant them the independence and connectedness that comes with being digitally adept.
The most compelling 10 entries will get the chance to participate in the first cohort of DIGnified at no cost. Learn more and apply here.
On Saturday, November 19th, with relatively little fanfare history was made, 5 teams of young Nigerian VR enthusiasts – developers, 3D animators, graphic designers, students and entrepreneurs – came together to participate in Nigeria’s, and quite possibly Africa’s, first Virtual Reality Hackathon. The event was organised by Imisi 3D, the leading Virtual Reality creation lab in the country, with contestants asked to tackle solutions creation in 3 verticals – education, healthcare and tourism for the Samsung Gear VR.
Judith Okonkwo, Imisi 3D’s founder, explained the atypical process adopted for the Hackathon “we wanted to give the teams the best chance of success, particularly as we were all so new to VR content creation, so we formed teams 2 months before the hackathon. The thinking was that the teams could get together and start to work on their VR development skills with the lab’s support”. The Imisi 3D lab utilised several VR ready computers, Gear VRs and mobile devices, 360° Cameras and Leap Motions provided in conjunction with event partners Facebook, Samsung and the Virtual World Society.
The 5 participating teams and their projects were:
Team LeVRn – an app that teaches you how to code.
Team GoThere – an app that allows you to experience locations in Nigeria before visiting.
Team Life Race – a gamified learning experience that explains human conception.
Team Farm VR – an application that teaches extension workers how to deal with farm pests in local
Team 3D6 – a retail VR app for virtual shopping.
The judges for the event were CcHUB CEO – Bosun Tijani, Former Bank of Industry (BOI) CEO/MD Rasheed Olaoluwa, and Ericsson Innovation Lead – Bankole Alao; with Bunmi Otegbade, CEO of Generation Enterprise, serving as the MC on the day. They all commended the teams for the work done; with ‘Bosun Tijani reminding participants that the renaissance in the Nigerian tech sector was driven by the first hackathon in 2010, and this may well prove to be the case for the virtual reality industry.
Team LeVRn emerged victorious with their learning experience app, combining the Gear VR with the Leap Motion to create motion aided learning in the virtual environment. They won the Co-Creation Hub sponsored Competition Prize of $1,000 along, with $5,000 seed investment for the development of their product, and the Institute of the Future sponsored $1,000 Future prize.
The teams are now expected to further refine their products, with ongoing support from the lab, with fully developed VR experiences deployed to the Oculus store by the end of the year. Judith Okonkwo explained “the goal of the hackathon was always twofold, an event to inspire innovative creation for virtual reality and a first step to making Nigerian VR experiences available to the world.
The Oculus store and Samsung Gear VR provide this opportunity in a way very few HMDs can match, with over 2 million Gear VRs in use globally this is a direct window to the world”. This event was made possible through the generosity of our partners and sponsors CcHUB, Facebook, the Virtual World Society, the Institute for the Future, Samsung HQ and Asktoks.com.
The results https://www.facebook.com/Imisi3D/videos/1179398695483700/
The demos https://www.facebook.com/Imisi3D/videos/1179333875490182/
Checking in at the hackathon https://www.facebook.com/Imisi3D/videos/1179168748840028/
Unless otherwise stated all photos credited to Mohini Ufeli
On the 13th of June, 2016, we created a new membership model for the 6th floor that could allow for inspiration and support experimentation. We wanted a simple platform that could possibly inspire participation in social innovation and entrepreneurship in the young, naïve and purposeful spirit of the community.
We named the new membership model: ‘Challenge Membership’; and made access free for those who were looking to join the CcHUB community.
Application for challenge membership was done via the6thfloor’s website; approval of submitted approach and subsequent invitation to meet with challenge owner was based on feasibility of the approach, concise summary of approach, and, in a few cases, experience on similar ‘projects’.
Each challenge allowed for a specific bounty access points which translated into the duration an approved member could have access to the floor.
CcHUB, re:learn, and, 6 startups in the CcHUB Incubation portfolio (Mamalette, LifeBank, Truppr, Genii Games, GoMyWay, Vacantboards) have so far contributed to the challenge portfolio.
Social Media and articles on tech blogs were used to increase awareness of challenges available and the hashtag #the6thfloor was used on social media to promote the available challenges.
A total of 176 challenge applications were received within 5 months; 32 challenges were submitted by challenge owners (startups); 22 challenges got published on the challenge portal, of which 16 were completed within this period. Also, 25 ‘challenge members’ completed the challenges; 5 of whom were shortlisted for other challenges they subsequently applied for.
Highest skill applied included research, communication, project management and design; least skill applied involved coding.
Upon completion of the challenge (usually after two weeks of resumption), the challenge owner reviews the challenge outcome submitted approves; and signs off on approach.
We got feedback from two ‘Challenge Members’, Emmanuel and ‘Tayo, who worked on two different challenges: Mamalette Challenge (Grow Mamalette community) and CcHUB Student Membership challenge:
Case Study One (1)
1. Case study: Mamalette Challenge: Grow Mamalette community
Here’s what Emmanuel had to say:
Working on the previous Mamalette challenge with my partner on the challenge enabled me to share ideas with other community members. The Mamalette CEO, Mrs Anike Lawal inspired and taught me key things on how startups work.
This challenge encouraged me to research more and think critically to find solutions to not just what I was working on but other areas she might experience challenges in future.
This gave me exposure on how startups work, how to scale, deal with challenges that startups face in their early stages and how to work with others in the community.
Case Study Two (2)
2) Case Study 2: CcHUB Student Membership challenge
Here’s what ‘Tayo had to say:
I can pinpoint two major things I learnt during the last challenge: the ability to synergize different ideas brought to the table and the concept of remodelling an existing idea.
We scrutinised every idea each of us brought to the table after which we were eventually able to put all ideas together which evolved into a good solution.
I also learnt the art of remodelling or innovating on an existing idea. We researched and studied existing organisations that were doing what we wanted to design. It made it easier for us to innovate on this and developed our own structure.
The challenge was a good experience and the brainstorming sessions was an eye opener.
What the startup founders said
“CH 17: Strategy for Marketing Animated Series”
I put up a challenge on strategy for a marketing my animated series and worked with Omozino on the challenge. She provided key marketing strategies for Genii Games series and shared interesting ideas. I can affirm that her work was superb. She also showed enthusiasm about the challenge which featured in our conversations which strengthened our communication flow. Although I am yet to implement the suggestions she shared, once the opportunity comes, I will implement them. – Adebayo Adegbembo, CEO, Genii Games
“CH 22: Mamalette Live 2016 is almost here, what should the media plan look like?”
We encountered some difficulty during the planning of Mamalette Live which we put up as a challenge. Adebayo sent in his approach to the challenge and was shortlisted. I found him to be a very creative thinker because he was able to come up with workable ideas within few minutes to solve my challenges. Our communication flow was great despite not being able to meet physically (as he is currently in the US) we were able to communicate via email and Skype. He was always on time and very accommodating.
Our challenge was to increase the numbers of people registering to attend our event (Mamalette Live). After implementing his ideas, our numbers increased to almost 200 sign ups within a short period which was quite good.Adebayo was quite committed to the challenge, even after initially sharing his ideas, he continued to reach out to know updates of the challenge and offered more ways to help. In all, it was a good one. – ‘Kemi Vaughan, Marketing and Events Executive, Mamalette