The entrepreneurial journey is one of the most challenging yet pretty exciting journeys anyone can embark upon. Sadly, multiple research work have stipulated that more businesses die in the first couple of years due to a number of reasons, chief of which are lack of support and paucity of funds for investments.
One of the things I do each time I find myself in another country is to try to find out how young entrepreneurs and start-ups in those climes are coping and one thing is clear, smart nations are investing heavily in various start-ups particularly those in the technology space.
This is why I must commend the efforts of forward-looking organisations such as Ventures Platform, Lagos Angel Network and a few others. I state this because start-ups in Nigeria are desperately looking out for organisations that can support them, be it in the area of mentorship or finance. It is not just about investments though and this is why the importance of accelerators and incubators cannot be overemphasised.
Incubators are customarily concerned about helping entrepreneurs to build ideas from scratch, but an accelerator is not interested in that. Accelerators are interested in scouting for ideas that have been tested, proven and worthy of investment.
These two related entities, the accelerator and the incubator, play significant roles in building a formidable tech ecosystem. Lagos is the capital of the start-up ecosystem in Nigeria, with about 400-700 estimated active start-ups, valued at about $2bn and this makes it the most valuable on the African continent, according to a new report from Start-up Genome.
It is not just the most valuable; start-ups in Lagos get the highest average early-stage funding, compared to Cape Town and Johannesburg. We are talking about $77,800 early-stage funding available to Lagos-based start-ups, in comparison to the global average of $252,000.
It gladdens my heart when I see other regions in Nigeria take the lead in building their local ecosystem. The Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, for instance, is a region that is very determined to inject a new breed of innovative and vibrant players into the ecosystem with the help of different accelerators and incubators.
I must emphasise that the entrepreneurial journey is usually dicey for start-ups, especially in the Nigerian climate where the business environment is not positioned enough to expedite economic stability and scalability.
To ease off some of these hurdles and offer other necessary assistance such as funding, mentorship, building sustainable solutions to — Finish Reading on the Punch