Thursday, December 8, 2022

2022 GITEX: Nigerian Startup Emerges Global Best In Mobility, Smart Cities 

Shap Shap Prize
R-L: The director-general, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi, Shap-Shap chief executive officer, Khalil Halilu, Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Pantami, NITDA Governing Board chairman, Dr. Abubakar Sa’id and a Nigerian delegate showcasing Supernova Challenge Pitch Competition winning prize in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

A Nigerian startup, Shap-Shap, has emerged winner of the Mobility and Logistics Innovation category in the Supernova Challenge Pitch Competition of the GITEX 2022 fair in Dubai, UAE. 

The chief executive officer, Khalil Halilu who was one of two Nigerian startups to enter the final stage of the competition, was presented with a prize of $8,000.

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Pantami described the victory as a win for all Nigerians and a clarion call to investors to come to invest in Nigerian startups.

“It shows that we are doing well. Don’t forget that we have about seven unicorns in Africa and five of them originated in Nigeria.

“If you look at the competition, up to the semi-finals, we had nine start-ups and, in the finals, we had two start-ups. Now we have one winner. It is an indication that, out of 90 countries and over 800 entries, we are doing well. The future is bright for Nigeria when it comes to digital innovation and entrepreneurship,” Pantami stressed. 

In his remarks, the director-general, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi expressed excitement at the outcome of events. 

According to the DG, the solution Shap-Shap presented will not only impact Nigeria but the global market.

“This shows that we have people with innovative ideas that can change the world positively.

“This is how others like Uber and other logistics applications started. In Nigeria, most of the strength we have today is in Fintech but other categories like e-health, eduTech and mobility, logistics and smart cities are areas [in which] we need startups that can solve problems for our local consumption and the world,” he noted.

Abdullahi said that the different success stories achieved by the Nigerian team underscore the fact that the participation was productive.

He enumerated the highlights of Nigeria’s participation, including the signing of a MoU with Microsoft to train 5 million Nigerians on digital skills, start-ups closing deals worth more than $10 million and Shap-Shap emerging as the global winner in the tech competition.

In his comments, Halilu thanked the Federal Government for always supporting startups. He encouraged relevant authorities, both in the private and public sectors, to build Nigerian start-ups to come up with innovations that will turn the world’s attention to Nigeria for solutions. He added that the prize money will be judiciously deployed.

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