Business/Career Internet/data

Nigerian Innovators and Entrepreneurs: Shaping the Future

Nigerian innovators and entrepreneurs
Written by Omolola Akinyemi

The internet and mobile technology revolution shoved its way into Nigeria at the turn of the 21st Century. At the onset, it felt like a hassle for many Nigerians to conform to the evolving internet-driven economy. They have had to deal with insufficient and costly internet infrastructure and relatively high cost of data. But of necessity, Nigeria has leaped ahead of the disadvantaged zone. The nation is currently at the forefront of driving entrepreneurship and innovation, backed by modern internet-driven technologies. There is simply no turning back for Nigerian innovators and entrepreneurs in Africa’s most populated nation and leading country in Africa’s tech hub space. 


Available online statistical data reveals that at least 116 tech hubs are located in Nigeria (as of August 2022). Other records claim they are 90 in total. But it is on record that Nigeria has the largest number of tech hubs in Africa. These tech hubs have eagerly continued to power Nigerian business startups with incubation and acceleration support programs. According to CNN World, Nigerian startups raised an extra 400 million US Dollars (approximately) in funding in the year 2019 alone. 

How Nigerian Innovators and Entrepreneurs Contribute to Economic and Technological Growth

The support of tech hubs, and funding from varied sources, have helped to birth many technology-savvy Nigerian innovators and entrepreneurs. They have relentlessly continued to pursue Nigeria’s technological and economic growth with creative solutions to ease the lives of its citizens. Such solutions include:

– Well-developed and customer-centric e-commerce platforms. With a diversified collection of products and services, top-notch customer support, and customized solutions for consumers.

– The use of artificial intelligence and machine learning to enhance industrial and commercial operations. These include predictive analytics in marketing, healthcare, agriculture, e-commerce, research, and big data (amongst others).

– Use of blockchain technology to render transparency and simplify operations such as supply chain management and financial services. 

– The drive to transform Nigeria’s urban centers into smart cities. Thus, Nigerian cities are gradually applying intelligent technologies to build and sustain public utilities and services, as well as infrastructure. Solar and wind-powered street lights and water projects, waste recycling programs, and nurturing trees in the midst of cities are typical examples. These initiatives are in a bid to promote efficiency, sustainability, and a better quality of life for city dwellers (and visitors).

Digital banking and financial technology (fintech) companies. They have continued to push for more Nigerians to enjoy financial inclusion – whether they have access to traditional banking services or not. They have largely succeeded through mobile banking, omnichannel payment gateways, digital wallets, blockchain, and other technologies.

–  Enhanced cashless transactions via online and mobile payment gateways.

– E-government initiatives. There are now online platforms through which the government can easily engage with citizens and simplify administrative operations. By doing so, the lack of transparency and bureaucratic bottlenecks that are characteristic of government offices can be critically reduced. It ensures that the government and its workers can be more efficient and responsive in dealing with the general public. 

Modern healthcare solutions powered by technology. Modern technology solutions deployed in Nigeria’s healthcare sector include AI-powered (and data-driven) diagnostics, as well as wearable health devices. 

Greater investment in renewable energy solutions. To solve the erratic and inadequate power supply issues that have plagued Nigeria for decades, more solar-powered projects (and gadgets) continue to emerge. In addition, are providers of advanced power storage solutions, helping to boost and improve Nigeria’s energy landscape.  

Automation and robotics technology applied in several industries. From assembling and manufacturing plants to food and drink industries, and even logistics management. It has critically improved the efficiency, speed, and precision of operations.

Agritech revolution. Several agritech innovations are being injected into Nigeria’s agricultural sector. They have continued to revolutionize farming processes to promote productivity, sustainability, and quality outputs. They include the use of drones, technology-backed research, precision farming, enhanced food preservation, advanced farm management practices, and blockchain-backed supply chain management.

Tighter cybersecurity measures to protect users, financial transactions, as well as vital personal and corporate data from cyberattacks.

Why Nigerian Innovators and Entrepreneurs Continue to Thrive

The success of Nigerian tech and commerce startups, innovators, and entrepreneurs, can be attributed to certain key traits. 

Firstly, many of these entrepreneurs are quick to identify gaps in the market, and they are ready to supply solutions to meet them. They are ready to turn challenges into opportunities to solve problems, and profit from it. Pure water, organic drinks, digital banking, and innumerable e-commerce businesses were birthed in this way. 

Yet again is the well-known entrepreneurship spirit of the average Nigerian. The drive to succeed at work and business, and to take responsibility for that success, is deeply ingrained into the average Nigerian citizen. And they exhibit it everywhere they go across the globe – even in doing the supposed menial jobs. In furtherance of this, Nigerian entrepreneurs are often willing to take calculated risks in the bid to achieve their goals. 

Furthermore, modern Nigerian entrepreneurs are acquiring and leveraging technology skills and tools to advance their business ideas. It has led to wave after wave of creative ideas and solutions to solve contemporary problems. These solutions continue to emerge and build on one another to become even better. It has created a very competitive market. Modern Nigerian entrepreneurs are also more willing to collaborate and share ideas, in spite of being competitors. 

We will also acknowledge the increasing readiness of the Nigerian government to support and nurture entrepreneurs, startups, and SMEs with various incentives. Government-backed loans; public-private collaborations between the government, local and international stakeholders; as well as government-backed skill acquisition programs, are among such initiatives. 


There is a huge market of untapped resources and patronage available for Nigerian innovators and entrepreneurs with vision. It is clear that over time, these entrepreneurs will help to shape the technological and economic evolution of Nigeria and its people in a huge way.   



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About the author

Omolola Akinyemi

A Computer Science graduate of UNILAG, I hail from Ekiti state of Nigeria. An astute teacher, learner & admin assistant of many years experience. I love technology, innovation, and Nature. A problem solving mentality is important to me. The future is only seconds away, and I believe I can define the future now. You can also.

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