DEMO-Africa has released the dates for the annual ICT conference to be held between 22nd and 26th September 2014 in Lagos, Nigeria. The series of events will be hosted in collaboration with the Nigeria Federal Ministry of ICT , the LIONS@FRICA partners and National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA). The five days affair will be kick started by the DEMO Africa boot camp on the 22nd and 23rd of September. The Lions summit will be held on the 24th September while the main forum will take place on the 25th and 26th of September.
This year will present yet another chance for the best technology startups in Africa to be recognized and exposed to the world. In this connection, DEMO Africa is inviting start-ups who are ready to launch to submit their applications between 15th March and 15th June 2014.The applications will be subjected to a panel of judges comprising of key players in the ICT sector in July, 2014 who are expected to settle on the best forty based on their ability to link creativity, innovation and effectiveness. The teams with the most compelling products and business models will then be given a chance to launch their products to an ecosystem of investors, IT buyers and the global IT press.While making the announcement in Lagos, Nigeria, the Honorable Minister of Communication Technology Mrs Omobola Johnson expressed optimism in Africa’s journey towards being a fully ICT enabled continent. “We are excited to host DEMO Africa 2014 in Nigeria. This presents a great opportunity to cross-fertilize ideas across African startups, as well as showcase our talents and skills in the innovation ecosystem.” She said.
Staying in line with the Honorable Minister’s sentiments, The DEMO Africa Executive Producer, Harry Hare, stressed the importance of supporting technology startups and promised to equip the winning teams all the necessary tools to promote their businesses. “The teams will receive professional training on demonstration and support on the technical set-up from our production team and will also stand to benefit from PR support and the promotion of the launch video after the convention.” Hare maintained that such training has in the past proved to be fruitful in selling noble ideas by the startups during the previous annual conventions. He confirmed that last year alone, more than 600 start-ups applied to launch at DEMO Africa but only 40 out of these were selected to launch at the DEMO Africa platform. Several of these are said to be already engaging with investors while others are in the final stages of closing their initial round of funding.
This year, the entry categories have been revised to include Health, Education, Agriculture, Commerce, Leisure and Hospitality, Manufacturing. This was found to be more inclusive and is expected to provide better fit and competitiveness among the participants. “Technology is used in different verticals so we though we should make align the technology being launched with the verticals,” Hare continued. Further information and terms and conditions for application is available on http://www.demo-africa.com
The DEMO Africa 2014 outreach program will include the DEMO innovation Tours which will take place between April and May 2014 and DEMO Africa Investor Roundtable which will take place in the months of July and August.
DEMO Africa is one of the flagship initiatives of LIONS@frica and aims to connect African startups to the global ecosystem. DEMO Africa is the place where the most innovative companies from African countries come to launch their products and announce to Africa and the world what they have developed.