The National Information Technology Development Agency, (NITDA), has urged Start-ups to gain an entrepreneurial mindset. This was communicated during the online capacity building exercise for the Start-ups in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic in April 2020.
With regulations around Social Distancing and prohibition of large gatherings, NITDA leveraged digital technology to continue with its planned activities such as the start-up clinic. The Clinics held virtually for five days and were attended by 20 start-ups.
Mallam Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, DG NITDA delivered a motivational speech to the Start-ups during the virtual closing ceremony and remarked that the world economic order will change after the COVID-19 Pandemic. He pointed out that many businesses might close. He advised the start-ups to build the capabilities and strategies required to operate in a post-pandemic world. He added that entrepreneurs need to be more unconventional in their approach to problem-solving.
The DG encouraged the Start-ups to think about ensuring that they create functional entities, ensuring continuity of their businesses. He highlighted that an entrepreneurial mindset is required for the existence of the business and this determined the kind of success that can be achieved/attained.
Mallam Abdullahi encouraged the participants to impart their vision, dreams and principles into the company from the onset and ask themselves meaningful questions so they are able to focus more strategically. He also encouraged them to see themselves as possible unicorn companies, a feat he believed that they could become within a short time by following the playbooks of successful startups, three simple rules: beginning with a plan to disrupt an existing industry; injecting capital to grow as rapidly as possible and tolerating high risk in a rush to conquer and dominate the market segment. Mallam Abdullahi noted that Nigeria enjoys a competitive advantage in the region, because of her digitally native population and untapped market. He added that the government is creating an entrepreneurial environment for the start-up to thrive.
Dr Amina Magaji Sambo, National Coordinator, Office for ICT Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIIE) urged the participants to adhere to all the guidance availed them during the period and ensure that they keep updating the office of their progresses and challenges.