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All posts by Paul Adepoju

  • Former Konga VP Gabriel Gab-Umoden on his latest venture, Legend.ng

    Gabriel Gab-Umoden isn’t new in Nigeria’s tech space. Having served as a Vice President at ecommerce company Konga, Gabriel knew what the potentials of the ecommerce sector in Nigeria are but he surprised the industry when his next venture had absolutely nothing to do about ecommerce and was opposed to the norm in the ecosystem in Nigeria where tech companies start in Lagos before going elsewhere. His new venture, Legend, is a trifecta offering Premium cable TV entertainment, unlimited Internet access, and local and international voice phone calls – all on the same wired network. He speaks to Ventureburn on...

  • 5 Nigerian startups with seriously disruptive capabilities

    ‘Disruptive’ is a powerful word, because it’s not really about a startup that is making money or one that is able to get millions of users. Instead, a disruptive startup is one that is groundbreaking and innovative. Prior to 2015, Nigeria’s startups had largely been founded by developers who had ideas and believed they could make money from such. And so far, several of them have been able to develop tech products that are still profitable – even before the advent of ecommerce. “Even though many foreigners and local investors think of ecommerce giants Jumia and Konga when they talk...

  • The co-habitation of startups and corporates in Nigeria’s disruptive FinTech space

    Last month, Nigeria’s serial tech entrepreneur, Simeon Ononobi, while speaking at Mobile West Africa 2016 revealed that his latest venture, MyAds, an application that allows users to get rewarded for allowing targeted ads to be displayed on their phones during incoming calls, broke even just two weeks after its official launch and is set for global launch. But MyAds isn’t his first successful venture as his earlier startup, SimplePay, a FinTech startup that allows Nigerian businesses to accept payments, has also been extensively successful especially after it was named the world’s best startup at the Seedstars world competition. However,...

  • Solving global problems is the best way for Nigerian startups to scale globally

    Nigeria’s tech ecosystem is getting attention from within and outside Africa even though the ecosystem is less than a decade old. The successes of ecommerce giants, Jumia and Konga, were an eye opener to the potentials of the tech market in Nigeria yet few startups are profitable, very few are scaling up and expanding to other markets. Simeon Ononobi, Founder and CEO of MyAds.ng, an advertising platform that recently expanded to India and plans to roll out in more countries outside Africa, believes that the chance of Nigerian startups growing to become ‘unicorns’ such as Google, Facebook and Twitter...

  • Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme selects 1000 entrepreneurs from across Africa

    From the 45 000 odd entrepreneurs that applied for the second round of the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme (TEEP), a list of the selected 1000 entrepreneurs has been released by the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF). The highest numbers of applicants came from Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Uganda, and Cameroon, with representation from all five of Africa's regions. Organisers said applications were received from applicants in 54 African countries and the number of entries this year were more than twice the number that applied for the maiden edition in 2015. TEEP is currently Africa's largest philanthropic initiative devoted to entrepreneurship and represents a 10-year,...

  • West Africa’s mobile startups set to battle for top honours

    Musicians want to go to the Grammys and actors dream of winning Oscars. For tech startups in West Africa, WAMAs is set to be their dream laurel as the inaugural West Africa Mobile Awards is open for entries. Pitched as the first truly West African technology awards targeting the leading mobile and tech companies across the region, organizers said it was created in order to measure how the provision of mobile connectivity, products, and services is having a fundamental impact on almost every aspect of society in West Africa. Supported by Mobile West Africa (MWA), AppsAfrica.com, and the Mobile Ecosystem Forum...

  • Konga founder Sim Shagaya steps down as CEO

    Nigerian tech entrepreneur Sim Shagaya has announced he is stepping down as the CEO of Konga, which is one of Africa’s leading ecommerce companies. In an email sent to the company's staff, Shagaya said he is stepping down to assume the role of the chairman of the company’s board of directors. Former Konga COO Shola Adekoya has been appointed acting CEO, who will be in charge until in interim until the board has made a new appointment. Shagaya launched Konga in 2012 and has been in charge of the company since its inception. Under him, Konga grew to become one of...

  • How this Accra-based incubator is nurturing entrepreneurs to build pan-African products

    A few months ago, I wrote a piece on the contrasting views of some African tech stakeholders, including Lagos-based CcHub’s Bosun Tijani, on the usefulness of entrepreneurship training programmes in ensuring the success of startups in the various African markets. While there are some who don’t entirely believe in entrepreneurship training, some institutions and incubators do have various programmes for entrepreneurs. Ghana, Accra-based Meltwater School of Entrepreneurship (MEST) is probably the continent’s most revered institution that equips tech entrepreneurs to compete in the pan-African mobile and to scale globally. With numerous success stories in its company profile page, Neal Hansch,...

  • Nigerian gift-card startup SureGifts introduces unique way to obtain loans

    Nigerian gift-card startup SureGifts is introducing a new service that allows employees in Nigeria to obtain voucher loans to pay for certain online services. Even though many Nigerians on social media described last year’s Black Friday sales by ecommerce giants in Nigeria, Jumia and Konga, as fraudulent, quite a number of online shoppers were able to get some good deals online and at offline stores. But for a good number of Nigerians, whether the deals were true or false, they wouldn’t even think of buying any new stuffs because they don’t have money for such. This could be a very bad...

  • Onyeka Akumah on Travelbeta, ecommerce and Nigeria’s tech space [Q&A]

    The first time I heard about Travelbeta launch by Onyeka Akumah was in July 2015 at the official launch of HouseMax in Lagos. Akumah described the platform as one that would totally transform the travel space in Africa. Few months later, the platform was officially launched and a few week later, it raised US$2-million. I recently caught up with Akumah to speak about the exciting travel company, startups and a range of issues they face in Nigeria and Africa as a whole. Ventureburn: How has the market responded to the launch of Travelbeta? Onyeka Akumah: It's been exciting. Every day we keep...