By Omobayo Azeez
The minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami, has commended Google for its launch of Google Developers Space in Nigeria, saying the new tech hub will enhance digital transformation among youths.
Google recently launched its first Google Developers Space in Lagos, Nigeria for training and mentoring of African developers, entrepreneurs and startups.
Speaking at the programme, Pantami, who was represented by Abimbola Alale, managing director of Nigerian Communications Satellite Limited (NIGCOMSAT), said “The launch of Google Developers Space in Lagos is a welcome development, because it will serve as a platform to empower Nigerians to acquire digital skills and carry out digital research on new trends, in line with the aspirations and goals of the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy.”
Sundar Pichai, Google chief executive officer (CEO) made a commitment to African entrepreneurs In July 2017, to start the Launchpad Accelerator Africa program and launch a space to house these efforts in Nigeria.
In line with that commitment, Google has launched the Developers Space to provide that home, and a space where entrepreneurs, developers, VCs and investors can connect and collaborate with each other.
Speaking at the event, Juliet Ehiuman, country director, Google Nigeria, said the tech giant had discovered that the African continent is replete with talented young people but who are often limited to achieve full potentials by lack of enabling environment and financial support.
“The Google Developers Space is meant to solve these problems and lift millions more startups. An enabling environment makes it possible to nurture and retain talent and disruptive ideas. This is the environment provided by the space to see excellence emerge.
“There is immense talent in this region but lack of access to broadband, infrastructure, support, mentorship and investors have been a challenge.
“This space is the next step to our support for developers across the continent. From our commitment to train 100,000 developers across Africa and the launch of developer merchant support in the Google Play store, making it possible for developers to earn money through apps they build. We are excited to continue our journey with the African startup and developer communities,” she said.
Also speaking, Onajite Emerhor, head of operations, Google Launchpad Accelerator Africa, said Google is strengthening its commitment to supporting the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Africa by opening the developers space.
She said, “We have partnered with Impact Hub to bring the Space to life and worked with a local company called Spacefinish, which designed it specifically to create an environment that fosters collaboration and innovation. We’re looking forward to working with startups and other players in the ecosystem from across the continent at the Space.”