Well then Startupsouth 2 happened, successfully. Score two for Mr. Uche Aniche!
November 10, 2016, was the date and KDC Waterlines, Port Harcourt was the venue and it had in attendance an interesting mix of tech entrepreneurs and business people from different parts of the country. The turnout was great with a predominantly youthful male attendance. On this day everyone was either a Founder or Co-founder of some startup that they were excited to introduce to anyone that cared to engage in small conversations with them.
One thing I liked about the event was the ‘free’ atmosphere that was exuded. You could literally walk up to anyone and introduce yourself and your startup to them and thereafter form deep conversations centered on startup growth. It was a really fun place to be. Last time I was at a social gathering this ‘free’ it was filled with hippies who had just inhaled laughing gas…so you get the idea.
The fun part of the event for me was getting to meet and chat with the founders of four startups, out of the eleven that had been selected from the many others that had submitted entries for a chance to pitch at the event. The founders were Joel Amawhe (Studacom now StudentVilla), Tochukwu Obikwere (Easywaya), Ability Elijah (MusicCloud) and Andrew Chinaobi (Dresnice).
Although I thought they all had good ideas that could transform into great products, I was the most impressed by studentVilla, a platform that helps you find your desired university accommodation and roommate without much hassle. I can relate to studentVilla in particular because in my first year at University I had used a service such as this, which was offered by accommodation agents at the time, to remotely obtain a room in a shared student house. At the time, I had hoped with crossed fingers for the accommodation agents to fill up the vacant rooms with my ideal flatmates – 1st year Engineering students like myself. However, I got final year law students who loved playing loud music until 3am into the morning hours.
So I was rooting for studentVilla because their service could be the difference between either having a great start at university or having an awful experience for the entire year. And I was delighted they won.
Let it be on record that Startupsouth 2 discovered these innovators and provided them with a platform to obtain valuable feedback from some of the leading tech entrepreneurs that have succeeded in building their own startups here in Nigeria.
Now by no means do I intend to narrate every activity that occurred at Startupsouth 2. That’d be grossly inadequate. However, I can try to use visuals to give you an idea of how remarkable an event it was. So, below is a video podcast that presents highlights from the event but first answer this: what do you call a tailor that uses tech as a business enabler?