By Chimezie Godfrey
Out of over 500 applications submitted by Nigerian startups, 40 made the shortlist and four emerged winners at the just concluded GITEX Global Northstar Roadshow Startups Event which is aimed at giving opportunities to indigenous startups to pitch their products and services and stand a chance to win $20,000 at the Gulf Information Technology Exhibition (GITEX) taking place in Dubai, United Arab Emirate this year.
The Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) will fully sponsor four startups out of the 10 that emerged tops to attend GITEX, which are the first and second place winners from Abuja and Lagos. While NITDA will sponsor the participation of the other six startups.
The Abuja section of the event which was hosted by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) through its subsidiary, Office for Nigeria Digital Innovation (ONDI) is organized by GITEX Global and North Star in collaboration with the UAE and DWTC for indigenous startups to pitch their products and services.
The startup event which took place in Abuja and Lagos on the 11th and 12th of May respectively had five winners for each location; for the Abuja event, in first place was, Floews an early warning system for floods. It’s an all-around solution that monitors and forecasts data as a warning to the inhabitants of flood-prone regions; second place was Medtech Africa, a startup that is leveraging Artificial Intelligence and Applications to enable caregivers to treat and manage patients living with vitals of a cardiovascular Disease using the patient’s data and; third place was Powerstove, a zero carbon-emission stove with a faster cooking time, saves lives, generates electricity, improves livelihoods, empowers women, and preserves the environment.
Meanwhile, in Lagos, in first place was, PaddyCover Limited ,a multi-channel platform that facilitates flexible and convenient payment for insurance packages by working with established insurers and customer aggregators to design and offer bespoke products; in second place was TruQ, an application the assigns and connects you to the closest and best vehicle suited for your trip; in third place was Price Pally, it provides access to the best quality farm-fresh food items affordable for families and businesses living in Africa cities with utmost efficiency.
The DG NITDA Kashifu Inuwa CCIE while addressing participants at both events reiterated the Agency’s commitment to continually drive the implementation of the Digital Innovation and Entrepreneurship pillar of the NITDA Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan (SRAP 2021-2024).
The NITDA boss who was represented by Dr. Aristotle Onumo said “GITEX is a platform through which we expose our startups to gain the right kind of visibility and right kind of traction to attract prospective investors and venture capitalists.
Speaking at the event the Director of Commercial Event Management of North Star Mr. Zarko Ackovik said North Star which is part of GITEX is the largest startup event in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.
He mentioned that Nigeria has one of the largest startup ecosystems in the whole of Africa, adding that “the show brings to them close to more than 400 investors they can meet and network with at the event and also allows them to go for a pitch competition.