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Realities of the Nigerian Technology Ecosystem | Emeka Okoye | TEDxPortHarcourt

despite recent interest and the positive
news and the recent interest of venture
capitalists and investors of my giant
tech startups the crude reality is not
merged nowhere it’s a country or a tech
economy the natural tech startup scene
is mostly concentrated in illegals Lagos
is the most populated and
fastest-growing city on the African
continent is a rising star in the global
star topic ecosystem
the city has transformed tremendously in
the last four years as reflected in
skyrocketing smartphone use and
connectivity these technological
advances resulting from digitalization
from these tech startups have generated
some benefits and opportunities for the
society and equally influencing and
changing the ways in which people
interact and also the very nature of our
business environment what it hasn’t
improved the technology ecosystem let’s
consider the following
most major start off cities in the world
are majorly sustained by the following
legacy technology businesses and
universities so we should act at ease
sustaining our Nigerian tech startups
again we should ask how many natural
made commercial software benefited from
the e-commerce boom
or is it hype equally which you ask as
we know deepika vendors of Technology in
Nigeria the following sectors financial
government manufacturing oil and gas and
services are these tech startups
building for this sector
we should also ask is Nigeria instead on
the proof back 100 innovation index
unfortunately only three African
countries made it but what criteria to
be in this in-depth research
manufacturing technology companies
education patent and the three countries
we have from Africa Tunisia which is
number 94 South Africa number 99 and
Moroccan hundred again we should ask is
Nigel among the top software industry in
the world only two countries Egypt and
South Africa Joaquin Africa reveler
relevant in the global software market
now the proper software market is a four
hundred billion market and Africa is
contributing around two billion dollars
now John software market is around two
billion in size and the African software
market is five period so the question is
are tech startup tonight you are really
helping the country to become a tech
country the question is known so will
not talk about why superfast let’s
define what is not office in start-up is
an entrepreneurial venture which is
typically a new image fast green
business that aims to meet a marketplace
meet by developing a viable business
model around an innovative product
services or platform so it’s all about
high risk in startups have high rates of
failure and why do they have this high
rate of failure simply because of so
many genuine business reasons and
equally because of his high risk but
it’s also fired by height and facade
unfortunately our young folks who are
impressionable and impatient I am
pressing this without enough knowledge
insight lack understanding office
for a poorly educated and
poverty-stricken continents like Africa
the following abstract so I’m going to
talk news it or into the hype created
instead of wanted to Tony solution or a
product into an organized structure in
the form of FM intrapreneurship came to
be interpreted as starting a company
first and then finding the answer to
what it is we have to do hence the
global start of failure rate to be at
95% what it is that we do is that we
also conflict terminologies and tales
for instance any time we mention
technology or startup people think it’s
we are talking the other team so we
conflict words like technology with
startup we misuse terms like technology
ecosystem to mean developer community
and even platforms colonialism is not
helping matters
African needs to understand the
technology terminologies properly
bringing clarity to the conversation is
always fundamental so as to reduce this
effect we also completely follow in
terms in all vision and disruption now
let me give you some history in 1983
professor Oliva Robison developed the
first black Africa commercially produced
line of personal computers and service
at the animal State University aesthetic
presently inserted a suit under the
keyway uncle an effort described by the
term head of state illogical Shagari as
placing the trio for Nigel’s quest for
technology development this computers we
are named as tech eight hundred and
eight thousand series
unfortunately we didn’t build on these
eight years later the personal computer
revolution started in Nigeria creating
lots of computer businesses like
computer science computer assemblies
from software development networking
desktop publishing Bhansali it was not
based on our earlier chief it by the 90s
Nigel was in the war tech mark because
software developed in Nigeria we have
been used locally and exported to many
Western countries with a high point
being when the functions of technical by
Nigerian complicate our system we are
using over eaten weapons in the United
States of America alone so Larry a
district in the liquors was a Silicon
Valley of Legos he had over 250 computer
companies Nyjah had over 5,000 computer
schools all over the country
these were aware before India became a
big force in information technology
unfortunately our tech boom column be
sustained for long
it died after the y2k hype due to
manufactures in all we had over 1,000
tech companies in Nigeria with about
five of them unison five percent market
share then there were no venture
capitalists the front software houses
technology ministry there was no there
was no ICT agency and there was no ICT
policy now Nigeria 2015 is that imported
2.5 billion worth of software we pirated
190 million software we had spotted only
5 million dollar ICT equipment software
export from Nigeria what 0 know what is
this situation we are not all was never
built in technology pillars Nyjah had no
culture of research and development with
mention about it here they were not
brought innovation enabler
and without this elementary to be hard
for us in development indigenous
technology capability beauty most of our
technology solutions or beauty most of
our digital technology solutions of
consumer isin technologies on foreign
digital platforms we do also no good we
cannot have the capacity to evolve our
technology across systems if we do not
invest in the fundamental elements that
make technology development happen when
this foreign digital platforms dictate
rollout of technology there is less and
less opportunities for innovation or
invention Muslims it benefits these
platforms and their hosts this is what
we call digital colonization yes we are
being colonized by platforms like
Facebook Google and Co in other words
any limitation imposed by these digital
platforms or into how assist local
problem will limit our ability to create
solutions address our needs that is
we’re only accelerating the vision of
these digital platforms let’s define
what technology ecosystem is a
technology ecosystem is an
interconnected in the interdependent
network of actors that combine to create
innovative technology products and
services it’s also a distributed
adaptive open socio technical system
with properties of self-organization
scalability and sustainability and is
inspired by the natural ecosystems we
read about in our biology now it has the
following actors universities and
Polytechnic technology businesses homes
on accelerators entrepreneurs startups
Research Institute the other secondary
supporting factors which include the
media the government installed human
resource poor educational system the an
entrepreneur culture coupled with a
local infrastructure that will support
founders and invest investors
communicating solving problems to
and coming up with innovative ideas
sucessful tech ecosystem allows for any
smaller company and ecosystem to bring
innovation to market operating alone
will be difficult and in many instances
impossible without the ongoing help of
the tech ecosystem in the you may not
get dominated by larger companies now
why do we see this because the larger
companies need these smaller companies
to get technology that will make them
better there are three kinds of
technology we have biological or science
technology reaching for science is all
about the process of the line leading it
to all forms of technology which
includes new neural technology stem
cells genomics bioinformatics synthetic
biology so we have the physical
technology which is about the tools
machinery and gadgets use both within
industry and by consumers so we have
batteries nanomaterials autonomous
vehicles wearables and Internet of
Things then we have finally we have the
digital or information technology which
is about completion technology about
computer technology and about computer
software so that’s we have artificial
intelligence augmented reality
blockchain databases and so no we cannot
sacrifice all these fundamental elements
of technology with fixation on coding or
programming now let me deal with some of
these actors of the ecosystem first
government is the government job to
planner manage education in society
government technology is also important
because we need to take it very
seriously here in Nigeria it’s part of
governance it will help to bring the
government citizens together and it has
a role in developing and sustaining
local technology ecosystem
government technologies used to support
and promote local technology so because
that the biggest spenders in the economy
they should be spending on local
technology by improving the local
companies now let’s talk about
universities and education the
foundation of a tech ecosystem is
universities polytechnics and technical
schools with
having them the tech ecosystem become
sustainable one of the goals of
education is to create men who are
capable of doing things not simply
repeating what other generations have
done this statement was made by a man
called Piaget our inverses and
polytechnics if built properly ought to
be a socially cohesive environmental
launched invention and innovation that
will serve our local problem the
university is also the planning stages
for our society’s aspiration they are
the drivers of disruptive technology our
change like automatic automation and
official intelligence most of noggins
problem students can be solved with
technology and when we talk technology
we are talking of Applied Science and
Engineering and all we need to get
answers to our problem is to support
research research activities are low in
idea where we have an e 38 researchers
per million population as our 2015 38
the global average is 1083 side not the
reason why certain countries like USA
Canada is Regina aware there is because
they have smart comments who understand
the fundamentals of this to the
development of ecosystem a good case our
give is China China’s rise in artificial
intelligence incredible channel at the
Western countries in research what is
the comparison universe is made up for
lost ground thus at a promoting local
research also recently the Chinese
medical Minister of Education encourage
universities to set up new degree
program to reflect the need of the
society example Big Data and artificial
so I created a social and economic
development needs let’s talk about
research is easy to take cutting-edge
research for granted but most
breakthroughs that improve our life
starts as a government-sponsored
research the statement was made by Bill
Gates we also need to know the
scientific on
not entrepreneur leadership is driving
our American innovation with input from
research from both federal government
corporate entities and academia high
educational research and development in
agriculture is a sample sub-saharan
Africa averages twelve point seven
million on research and between the
researcher is nine percent of them are
PhD Brazil has 230 million
China four hundred two million India 735
million it’s nine percent PhD research
in Nigeria they all knew that we have
152 universities with 21 research
institutions we still have ear detect
research per million global average is
eight thousand eighty three natural
spends 1.2 million billion dollars on
research for South Africa spends four
point seven million dollars this is us
at 2015 China spent three hundred sixty
nine billion dollars now let’s talk
about startups as of travel startup
ecosystem is built on top of the gases
tech foundation building the startup
before building a tech foundation is
dead on arrival
it needs to be sustained give an example
in Cambridge University they have a
thousand five hundred tech companies
built around investor of Cambridge and
the employing sixty thousand people if
you are no chips they’re getting
smartphones running nine five percent of
smartphones comes from Cambridge
University and every body is involved
with such as graduates
lecturers are involved in this companies
now tech companies tech companies are
business organizations that produce they
do two teams they produce
cell technologies and technology
secondly the use technology or
technologies to offer services
unfortunately most of the technology
companies are created during the
technology boom in the early 90s where
or the first one that produces
technology products most technology
now use technology to do the start it’s
not oh so in conclusion we need to do
certain things first thing is that
government needs to change so the the
attitude of the government has to change
we need to inject visionaries creative
thinkers leaders and innovators in
government and we also need to type
without bureaucracy because bureaucracy
stifle innovative thing innovation
innovative thinking and critical
we also Nigel government needs to
understand that these days wealth of
nations ability to me by data flows so
platforms like Facebook Google cannot
without datum be making money for their
host countries we need to start
supporting local platforms so that we
without data make money for ourselves
locally we can impress we can embrace
digital platform business model today by
adopting open data open data appears on
our challenges and opportunities we have
then we need to fundamentally need to
understand this that the web is not a
winner takes it all
the web is for everybody on earth so
that everything can express their self
and use it to push the economy God made
me to sponsor research supported versus
to get funding and they need to improve
research activities universities really
need to improve research activities and
when they do this it will lead industry
to create better products that will have
social economic impact on the society in
truth tech companies can partner with
smaller startups and then create
products but we can also come together
and eat other sectors of the economy
like technology like health agriculture
and other sectors of the economy to
boost the economy thank you very much
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