In furtherance of its mandate to catalyze research and development and support startups in the energy industry, the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) in partnership with Founder Institute (FI) is set to launch new 17 portfolio companies that have passed through the Board’s Technology Incubation and Innovation Centre (TIIC).
The launch of the companies will hold on Thursday, 24 August, 2023, at the Nigerian Content Tower, Oxbow Lake Road, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, and will have in attendance international and local venture capitalists, investors, and product development subject matter experts who might be interested in investing or partnering the new portfolio companies. Key highlights of the event will be the pitching by the founders on their business ideas, with the hope of eliciting the interest of investors.
The launch of the new portfolio companies is a major milestone of the Board’s R&D strategy anchored on commercialization of research and innovation. The exposure given to the Founders is anchored on well- tested NCDMB product development framework, which includes product validation, prototype development, field trial, business development, and product deployment. The mission of both NCDMB and FI is to empower Nigerian startups and entrepreneurs to innovate and scale up their minimum viable products.
Commenting on the initiative, the Executive Secretary NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote explained that the Board deploys an end-to-end strategy in its projects and does not relent until ideas that it supports are fully deployed, commercialised and begin to solve societal problems.
He noted that some of the solutions proposed by the founders will impact key sectors of the economy beyond the oil and gas sector. He added that “These are innovative solutions to everyday problems that we face in the country. Nigerian youths are innovative and creative. They are looking for a platform they can get and NCDMB will be that platform.”
Speaking ahead of the launch, the Director of Planning, Research, and Development, NCDMB, Alhalji Abdulmalik Halilu explained that Founder Institute (FI) was engaged by the Board in December 2022 as a partner in product development. The program started with 54 incubates He further hinted that the collaboration leveraged on the Founder Institute’s globally recognized Accelerator programme that saw the 54 incubates transiting from idea to business development.
He noted that as part of the programme, the founders underwent mentoring, concept development, and patenting processes and some of them are currently developing prototypes of their various innovations. At the end of the 7 months intense tutelage, 17 of the incubates completed the business case development phase and are now positioned to establish startup companies and attract investors.
He stated that the incubation process will continue after the launch and will include validation, startup process, assuring that the Board will handhold the companies until their minimum viable products are introduced in the market and become successful.
The 17 incubates represent a spectrum of fields in the energy sector and data management, including Renewable Energy, Geological and Geophysical, Local Materials substitution, Health, Safety, & Environmental, and Engineering.. Other areas are Technology Development, Pipeline Monitoring Systems, Artificial Intelligence.
The structured accelerator program and the NCDMB incubation program have guided incubates to master the art of pitching, understanding market dynamics and customer insights, practicals, and mentorship. The accelerator program also equipped participants to navigate the entrepreneurial landscape effectively.
The impending showcase of the 17 incubates bears immense significance for Nigeria’s economic trajectory. By nurturing these talents, NCDMB is not only fostering job creation but also cultivating a pool of capable individuals poised to drive growth across various industries. The program also ignites an entrepreneurial and innovative culture, with the potential to propel technological innovation and effect positive social change.
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