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Innovators, venture capitalists converge on Akwa Ibom for tech week

Innovators, venture capitalists converge on Akwa Ibom for tech week

Akwa Ibom State is expected to witness an influx of technology experts, innovators and venture capitalists from the continent and beyond as they converge on the state Tech Week.

The event for tech professionals in and from Akwa Ibom will be held at Sheraton from October 30 to November 5, 2023, and will feature Keynote, product demonstration, pitch competition and workshops.

Confirmed speakers and attendees include representatives of the Government of Akwa Ibom State, leading members of the tech ecosystem, and founders of Akwa Ibom descent including Kachif Innuwa Abdullahi, director general of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) and Oswald Osaretin Guobadia Former Senior Special Assistant on Digital Transformation to the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Others include Deji Sarumi of Tech Hive Advisory, Aniedi Udo-Obong, Programme Manager at Google; and Mark Essien, the Founder of Hotels.ng, Richmond Bassey of Bamboo, Idorenyin Obong of Grey amongst others.

Read also: Nigerian tech firms urge investment in upskilling talent to bridge skill gap

According to Idongesit Essien, head of communication, Akwa Ibom Tech Week, attendees will have the opportunity to participate in hands-on workshops, gaining practical skills and knowledge in emerging technologies.

“Startup will showcase their innovative solutions, attracting potential investors, partners, and customers as well as networking opportunities,” he said in a statement.

It will also be an opportunity to connect with industry leaders, entrepreneurs, and like-minded individuals, fostering collaborations and expanding professional networks,” he said.

Experts say since 2015, the Akwa Ibom tech ecosystem has grown exponentially, at rates never seen before in the state’s 36-year history.

The number of innovation hubs has also increased from 2 to 14 in the last seven years accordingly.

Read also: How leveraging tech can boost Nigeria’s travel industry

They say it has resulted in the training of more than 3000 innovators, with many more, triple that number learning informally at their homes and taking remote jobs in software development, product design, project management and business analysis.

Despite this growth, the ecosystem in its nascent and sprawling phase is facing challenges of poor funding, weak and unfavourable regulatory environment, inadequate infrastructures and an unstructured workforce for talents, they explained.

The signals out of Akwa Ibom are positive and bright. This optimism is driven by decades of sustained aviation development, investment in power generation, road network infrastructure, security and a technology innovation ecosystem that has produced the best of talents on the continent.

Organised by Ibom Innovation Network Ltd, the Ibom Tech Week is bringing together; industry players, regulators, innovators, government agencies and investors.