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Ministry sets up venture capital fund for ICT businesses

10 June 2014, 15:17

Abuja - The Federal Ministry of Communications Technology has set up the first venture capital fund which would focus solely on ICT businesses.

This is contained in a recent progress report on projects and programmes being implemented by the ministry.
The report said that fund was established conjunction with private equity investors.

According to the report, the fund will serve as a catalyst to propel the growth of the ICT industry, provide alternative funding for start-up businesses and accelerate business development.

"The government had in 2013, appointed a fund manager to raise $15 million through private equity; this is in addition to its initial seed capital of N500 million.''

It said that in order to complement the fund, the ministry, in conjunction with the private sector, had also established another innovation called the "Technolaunchpad''.

According to the report, the Technolaunchpad was launched in 2012 as a public private partnership (PPP), to provide training and mentorship programmes for carefully selected technology start-ups.

"The mentors’ work with the tech start-ups and young entrepreneurs was to provide inputs to their software development to ensure that solutions have socioeconomic relevance within the targeted industry.’’

It disclosed that the innovation also provided access to fund and help in marketing the products and to assist the start-ups build software that met international standards.

It noted that these were some of the factors inhibiting the growth of local and young technology companies.

The report added that one of the tech-startups with a fraud management solution for the financial industry had successfully secured a private equity funding of $10 million (N16.5 billion), to assist in the development of its product and business.

-         NAN

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