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The UK-Nigeria Tech Hub has disclosed that it soon launch intervention programmes to support the Nigerian tech community following the recent impact of COVID-19 pandemic.

The Country Director, UK-Nigeria Tech Hub, Honey Ogundeyi, made this disclosure in a recent statement.

She said that the UK was committed to supporting the growth of the tech sector in Nigeria as a growing and sustainable digital ecosystem which contributed to economic growth and diversification.

“We are set to launch intervention programmes to support Nigeria’s Tech eco-system following our recent survey on start-ups and investors, to understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and other preventive protocols on their businesses.

“The objective of the survey was to understand how COVID-19 has affected early-stage start-up revenue, growth, fund-raising and further gain insights on new strategies that will better support start-ups during and post-COVID-19, ’’ Ogundeyi said.

She said that results from the survey revealed that the ongoing pandemic and lockdown of the economy continued to affect start-ups in different ways.

Ogundeyi said that it forced most of them to re-evaluate business models disrupting the value chain and re-assess fund-raising plans, noting that on a positive note, the pandemic had caused an acceleration of remote working.

She said: “In April 2020, the UK-Nigeria Tech Hub surveyed the tech-sector to better understand how start-ups are adapting in these unprecedented time.”

She said that respondents to the survey ranged from pre-seed to series A companies in tech-sectors including agriculture, education, financial services, health, amongst others.

“Our goal with this survey was to provide insights to help identify the interventions and support, most beneficial to start-ups in Nigeria and to offer more insightful guidance to the Nigerian start-up community and other key stakeholders.

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“The UK will be focusing work on three key areas which includes programmes we can put in place to drive the recovery agenda; how we can create long-term prosperity; and the capacity and digital skills programmes to support Nigeria’s digital sector.

“In the coming weeks, through these intervention programmes, we will support Nigeria’s Tech ecosystem to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on start-ups, investors and businesses,” Ogundeyi said

She said some of the intervention programmes included, supporting the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA’s) Presidential Advisory Committee Tech 4 COVID-19.

Ogundeyi said that the committee comprised of Nigerian Government and tech stakeholders.

She also said that the objective of the committee would be to provide recommendations on the measures to be taken to cushion the economic impact of COVID-19 on the tech sector.

“Others include, Hub Upskill (COVID-19) Programme (online) which helps hub managers and operators’ transition to virtual delivery of their programmes with a particular focus on hubs who work in underserved communities to promote inclusion and diversity.

“Another Intervention programme is the COVID-19 virtual roundtables, policy dialogue series, webinars and digital skills trainings.

“The goal of these multiple virtual interactive sessions are to provide digital skills and capacity training to the start-up ecosystem,” she said.

Ogundeyi said that the dialogue platform would convene all key stakeholders in the tech-entrepreneurship ecosystem to discuss recommendations around policy and programme interventions to support growth of tech entrepreneurs.

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