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Bolt Accelerator Program completes post-mentorship exercise for its top 10 winners

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Bolt, Africa’s leading ride-hailing platform, has concluded the last and final phase of its Bolt Accelerator Program – an initiative in collaboration with The Nest Innovation Park to empower its driver community to redefine their roles as entrepreneurs and amplify economic growth prospects across Nigeria.

The post mentorship graduation ceremony was held virtually on January 19, 2024 to send forth the top 10 winners.

Launched on September 19, 2023, the Bolt Accelerator Program has empowered drivers beyond conventional ride-hailing services and contributed to the economic growth of drivers in Nigeria.

The initiative witnessed a myriad of applications from drivers in diverse states in Nigeria, their brilliant ideas were meticulously scrutinised, and appraised, and ultimately the top 10 innovative business ideas emerged as winners, each receiving a seed fund of 2000 euros but proceeding to start a 6-week mentorship phase of the Bolt Den to mark a significant milestone celebrated during the virtual closing ceremony.

The initiative is in line with Bolt’s goal to contribute towards the development of Nigeria’s economic growth whilst keeping Bolt’s African City Vision project, which encourages the adoption of shared mobility in the ongoing development of wider transport ecosystems.

Recent analysis from Oliver Wyman Mobility Forum and Bolt highlighted that the African shared mobility market is the world’s fastest growing and is set to double to $8bn by 2030, creating more than 550,000 additional earnings opportunities while bringing significant economic and social benefits.

Speaking on the importance of the mentorship exercise, Bolt’s Senior Public Policy Manager WA & NA & CA, Weyinmi Aghadiuno, reiterated that the mentorship exercise is important to help nurture the winners and prepare them for the real-life tasks ahead.

“The program’s legacy will persist through follow-ups, meticulous record-keeping, and ongoing growth initiatives even in other countries, fortifying Bolt’s commitment to fostering innovation, empowerment, and increased mobility in Africa.

“The journey is not over; it is just starting, and we would love to be able to refer to the growth of these businesses five years down the line,” Weyinmi said.

One of the participants, Arinze Emmanuel a driver from Abuja whose idea aimed to tackle security issues focused on car theft by developing a website to monitor cars and disseminate information swiftly said, “I thank Bolt for this initiative, the mentorship phase has really equipped me to address the challenges my business idea aims to tackle.”

Another participant, David Uviowho, a driver from Port-Harcourt with the business solution to ensure efficient deliveries with the use of bikes for urban logistics said, “The program has been worth every single moment invested, and I am now operational thanks to the impact of it.

I will make Bolt proud.” He attributed his growth to the program’s educational value which he said significantly contributed to the realisation of his business idea.

Jennifer Modinatu, the only female Bolt driver among the top 10, whose zeal to encourage women driving to earn for themselves developed the car-for-hire business to encourage female inclusion in the ride-hailing ecosystem.

She encouraged women, urging them to engage more actively in initiatives such as the Bolt Accelerator Program introduced by Bolt.

Temitope Stephen, winner of the Oliver Wyman Mentorship, a driver from Lagos state with the ecofriendly business idea of converting petrol vehicles to compressed natural gas has kickstarted his private mentorship sessions with the Oliver Wyman team under seasoned professional as he commences operation of Raindom Energy Services Ltd.

The top 10 participants radiated enthusiasm, basking in the joy of the positive turnaround in their lives as they reintroduced themselves as owners of CAC-registered companies, sharing insights and heartfelt moments from the transformative journey in the Bolt Accelerator Program.

Bolt and The Nest stand united in propelling African entrepreneurs toward a future of innovation and economic growth.


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Ugo Onwuaso is an ICT enthusiast. He believes technology should be used for general good. He holds a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree from the Lagos state University. Dear Reader, Your support matters. But we believe that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. That is why, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and finance and how they affect lives. Our incisive and analytical view of how technology news affects the daily life help individuals and organizations make up their minds. Quality journalism costs money. Today, we're asking that you support us to do more. Kindly support our effort to deliver technology and finance journalism to everyone in the world. Donate as little as N1,000. Bank transfers can be made to: UBA Plc 1017156876 Communication Week Media Ltd

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Alleged Debt: Court Freezes Accounts of Swift Networks

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A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has granted Union Bank Plc. an interim order of Injunction restraining Swift Networks Limited and its agents from accessing funds and assets in all banks pending the determination of a Motion on Notice in an alleged debt recovery suit.

According to a certified true copy of the order, it was issued by the court on June 19, 2024, based on the application filed on June 11, 2024, and after hearing Gbenga Akinde Counsel for the Plaintiff/Applicant, Union Bank, moves a motion ex-parte.

Union Bank listed Swift Networks and its Managing Director Charles Anudu as the Defendants/Respondents in the suit marked FHC/L/CS/1010/2024.

Following Union Bank’s latest application, Justice Bogoro restrained the Defendants, their Directors, Staff, Management and Agents from tampering with, operating, withdrawing from, and/or dealing with the Defendants’ funds (whether held directly or by proxy) in any bank and/or financial institution within Nigeria pending the hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice.

The judge also directed all Banks/Financial Institutions harbouring the defendants’ accounts to depose on oath and furnish the plaintiff or its firm of solicitors, the details of the credit outstanding in the defendants’ account within seven days of receipt of the order.


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Layer3 Implements World-Class Upgrade for WACREN Cloud Infrastructure

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Layer3 has announced the successful implementation of a state-of-the-art private cloud infrastructure for the West and Central African Research and Education Network (WACREN). This pivotal project, hosted in Nigeria, is supported by the AfricaConnect3 project, co-funded by the European Commission.

Layer3 was selected for this prestigious project after an international bidding and tendering process. The newly established private cloud infrastructure will serve universities, research and education networks across the region, providing a robust, secure, and scalable platform designed to meet the unique needs of the academic and research community.

Key features of the cloud infrastructure include its high performance and scalability, engineered to handle large-scale data and computational needs, ensuring seamless scalability as demand increases. The platform also incorporates cutting-edge security protocols to ensure high-level data protection and integrity.

Other features in this state-of-the-art infrastructure include:

  • Reliability and Redundancy: Equipped with multiple layers of redundancy and failover mechanisms to guarantee high availability and minimal downtime.
  • Customizable Solutions: Offers tailored services adaptable to specific institutional requirements, supporting a diverse range of academic and research activities.
  • Ease of Integration: Facilitates seamless integration with existing IT environments and other cloud services, enhancing operational efficiency.

This world-class private cloud infrastructure is a significant milestone for the educational and research sector in West and Central Africa. By providing a dedicated and sophisticated cloud environment, the project will:

  • enhance research capabilities as researchers and educators will have access to powerful computational resources and collaborative tools, to facilitate groundbreaking research and innovation that will ultimately lead to development in the region
  • improve educational outcomes as universities can leverage the cloud platform to offer more dynamic and interactive learning experiences.
  • boost regional collaboration: The cloud infrastructure will enable regional research collaboration as researchers in different institutions in different countries can work on joint research projects and educational programs.
  • drive digital transformation: By adopting cutting-edge cloud technology, institutions can accelerate their digital transformation journeys and stay competitive in the global education landscape.

“We are honored to have been selected by WACREN and the AfricaConnect3 project for this transformative initiative. Our team is excited to have delivered this world-class cloud infrastructure that will empower the educational and research community in West and Central Africa, driving innovation and excellence. This project underscores our commitment to providing top-tier IT solutions that support academic and research excellence.” said Layer3 CEO, Oyaje Idoko.

According to WACREN CEO, Dr. Boubakar Barry, “This WACREN Cloud upgrade marks a significant step forward for us as it will enhance our capacity to serve national research and education networks (NRENs) and their communities across our region.

“We will leverage the capabilities of this new cluster to drive our suite of community-driven platforms and services.  We look forward to the tremendous impact the expanded infrastructure will have on fostering research and innovation excellence across West and Central Africa.”

For more information about Layer3 and its services, please visit www.layer3.ng.

Layer3 is a leading IT and cloud solutions provider in Nigeria, specialized in delivering innovative technology solutions that drive business growth and efficiency. With a focus on quality and customer satisfaction, Layer3 offers a comprehensive range of services, including cloud computing, cybersecurity, AI-driven network solutions, and managed services.


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NITDA, FCT-UBEB, Collaborate To Foster Digital Literacy In Schools

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In a significant development in Nigeria’s educational sector aimed at boosting digital literacy among school children, the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), is set to collaborate with the Federal Capital Territory Universal Basic Educational Board (FCT-UBEB) towards revolutionising the way young Nigerians engage with technology and equipping them with necessary skills to thrive in an increasingly digital world.

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The forgoing information is contained in a press statement e-signed by the Head of Corporate Affairs and External Relations at NITDA, Hajia Hadiza Umar.

As per the statement, the Director-General of NITDA, Mallam Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi , made this known when he hosted a delegation from the Head-to-Head Debate Committee of FCT UBEB led by its Ag. Executive Chairman, Dr Alhassan Sule, at the Agency’s corporate headquarters in Abuja to discuss possible areas of collaboration.

Mallam Abdullahi , who was represented by the agency’s Director of the Information Technology Infrastructure Solutions (ITIS) department, Oladejo Olawumi, stated that the collaboration aligned with a pillar of NITDA’s Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan (SRAP 2.0) 2024-2027 which was to Foster Digital Literacy and Cultivate Talents.

While stating that the pillar was key to the proposed educational board’s debate competition, the NITDA DG emphasised the importance of integrating technology into education to capture the interest and potential of young people.

“Children today, often referred to as digital natives, intuitively use technology and unlike us, who are digital migrants, these children seamlessly adapt to new gadgets and platforms. Therefore, it is essential to embed digital knowledge in their learning environment,” he noted.

Abdullahi disclosed that the agency had been providing infrastructure and resources to facilitate educational transformation as well as digital learning centres across all states of the country.

He added that the Digital Literacy for All programme was a national initiative of the agency which was designed to extend digital education resources to all corners of the country and urged the visitors to key into the programme while he asserted that it would be instrumental in enhancing digital literacy skills among students and out-of-school children alike.

Highlighting the agency’s focus on emerging technologies, Abdullahi stated that extensive research and development were being conducted in areas of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotics which were pivotal for future skill sets.

While referring to a recent collaboration between the agency and the Abuja Enterprise Agency on a Robotics competition organised for secondary schools in Abuja to spur interest in Robotics and technology among students, he said “I think we can work together in this area and make sure that Robotics interest is geared up among the youth.”

Elaborating on the Agency’s ongoing initiatives toward achieving 70 per cent digital literacy in the country by 2027, he further disclosed that the agency was working to integrate digital literacy into the national educational curriculum and providing hands-on experience with technologies like AI and Robotics.

While stressing the importance of addressing the needs of out-of-school children, he mentioned “We are developing programmes in partnership with various stakeholders to attract these children through incentives like school feeding, coupled with digital literacy and other educational training.”

Abdullahi noted that the multifaceted approach would ensure that children were not only fed but also equipped with essential digital skills that would pave the way for a more inclusive and technologically proficient future.

In his earlier remark, Dr Sule commended the agency for their various strategic initiatives to ensure a sustainable digitally transformed economy in the country.

While stating that the head-to-head committee was saddled with the responsibility of conducting the FCT Basic Schools debate competition, he noted that 900 students in the FCT would contest in a debate.

Sule said that finalists from the competition would be moved to a reality house which will be aired live on different media platforms where they would be trained on AI and Robotics.


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