- The federal government said it plans to support startups in increasing their annual investment
- The minister of Digital Economy said this is aimed at promoting the development and sustainability of startups
- He said the government plans to increase the capital raised by Nigerian tech startups by 50% year-on-year
Over the next four years, the federal government plans to provide three million Nigerians with computer skills.
To achieve this, the government established a strategy to support startups in increasing their annual investment rounds to $5 billion by 2027 and increasing access in rural areas by at least 40%.
The minister of communications, innovation, and digital economy, Bosun Tijani, revealed this in a document titled "Accelerating our collective prosperity through technical efficiency: A strategic plan for the Federal Ministry of Communications, Innovation & Digital Economy."
The digital economy requires innovation
The minister emphasised that a vibrant digital economy requires innovation, entrepreneurship, and access to capital in the current global technology landscape, Punch reports.
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He declared that the ministry's primary goal would be to promote the development and sustainability of startups, particularly those working to create ground-breaking solutions for critical economic sectors.
According to Tijani, the government is dedicated to expanding the local availability of patient capital because it recognises its crucial role in developing businesses.
He said the goal is to foster the domiciliation of entrepreneurs in Nigeria country and provide an environment where they can raise the money they need to prosper locally.
Describing how the ministry would measure if its plan were working, he added that it would increase capital raised by Nigerian tech startups by 50% year-on-year from $1bn/yr in 2022 to $5bn/yr in 2027.
Nigerian companies raised $1.2 billion in 2022, according to Africa The Big Deal, an African fundraising data insight company. This was done despite a capital shortage. According to Briter Bridges, African companies raised $5.4 billion in 2022.
The minister believes it is critical to provide talent with information that may impact the development of innovations and technologies that promote economic growth, increase the talent pool to encourage competitiveness, boost productivity, and guide evidence-based policy formulation.
“Our commitment to talent development is unwavering. We have set an ambitious goal to train three million early to mid-career technical talents over the next four years. These trainings will cover tech-enabled and tech-adjacent skills, core tech competencies, and advanced proficiencies. This holistic approach is designed to empower our workforce to thrive in a constantly evolving technological landscape.”
According to Tijani, the government wanted to retain at least 1.5 million skilled workers in its local talent pool and provide the other 1.5 million with possibilities to flourish in the world talent market.
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Drawn from Europe and Africa, with 25 startups coming from Africa for this year's cohort, Nigerian startups dominated the list.
The Black Founders Fund is sponsored by tech giant Google for Startups and is said to be in its third year.