A mobile ridesharing mobile app that enables users to request taxi and bus rides, Nairaxi, has emerged as the overall winner of the young innovators’ competition organised by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), which was held at the Digital Bridge Institute, Oshodi, Lagos.
The company – made up of co-founder and CEO, Kingsley Eze and co-founder and CFO, Elizabeth Omale – which took the coveted prize with a value of N2 million, presented an app which will enhance rideshare and safe delivery of packages to an audience made up of top officials of the commission, led by the director of research and development, Mr. Ismaila Adedigba, who represented the executive vice-chairman of the commission, Prof. Umar Danbatta.
Floews, with Bashir Abubakar as founder and CEO, came second, earning the prize value of N1.5 million, while Thronix Lab, comprising three young, tech-savvy, Nigerians, came in third, clinching the prize of N1 million. All the contestants were adjudged on the criteria of originality, innovativeness, simplicity of usage, commercialisation potential of their IT products, among others.
Floews developed a novel, deep-tech and all-round solution that monitors and forecasts flood imminence thereby, disseminating the forecast as an early-warning intelligence, while Thronix Lab developed ‘Proxie’, an Internet of Thing (IoT)-enabled smart socket and Wi-Fi hotspot range extender which enables users to switch on/off their appliances connected to it remotely through their phones.
President of the institute and chairman of the panel of judges, Prof. Mohammed Ajiya, commended the commission for providing the opportunity for young Nigerians to achieve their dreams of leveraging digital solutions to address local challenges in Nigeria.
Speaking on behalf of the EVC, the director of R&D, Adedigba, commended all 15 contestants that participated and the panel of judges for the “commendable diligence, thorough and painstaking evaluation carried out by his team of independent judges, leading to the emergence of the three winners”.
He assured of the commission’s commitment to continue to drive the Federal Government agenda of promoting indigenous ICT solutions development towards strengthening Nigeria’s digital ecosystem.
“It is important to note that this competition is not the end, but rather the beginning of our collective journey towards bridging the digital divide in Nigeria. We must continue to support and invest in local, indigenous digital solutions to ensure that all citizens have access to the technology and opportunities they need to thrive in today’s digital age,” Danbatta said.
Ten innovators from the 15 proceeded to the pitching stage, for having developed the best technology solutions, amenable to commercialisation and capable of solving identified challenges both locally and beyond in a move to bridge the country’s existing digital divide.
The 15 contestants at the event included Curnance PTY, Floews, Lalita by 02 Innovations Lab, Brilliant ESystems, Afrits Innovation, CitiFlow, Natal Cares, Nairaxi, Rate AM, Fixbot Technologies, Betalife, Cyber Plural, TronixLab, Ntapi Inc. and Bycep by Bedouin.