Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Kadri Obafemi Hamzat has disclosed that the state has attracted over $1 billion in Data Centre Investment in the past one year.
He disclosed this Thursday at the Art of Technology (AOT) Lagos 4.0, with the theme: “Talent Acceleration and a Smarter Lagos”, where some students were rewarded for emerging winners of the Innovation and Ideas Competition.
The Deputy Governor stated that this will enable the local domicile of digital platforms and open the state for more digital technology opportunities.
He said the proliferation of these investments presents opportunities for talent development within the ecosystem.
Hamzat emphasized that the entrepreneurial environment and the open support for technology informed the present administration’s increasing focus in innovation in a bid to drive value outputs for the state’s ecosystem.
The Deputy Governor noted that the state government is enthused to see the growth the ecosystem has experienced over the years. Citing Startup Genome, Hamzat said Lagos is now the number one technology startup ecosystem in Africa in terms of funds, performance, and sheer number of startups creating value.
He stated that between 2019 and 2021, over 120% increase in Venture Capital (VC) inflow into Lagos was realised resulting in $1.5 billion in VC funding in 2021 alone, adding that the state has a record of over 2000 Startups creating and contributing value across Fintech, Agritech, Construction, Health among others.
“Since the first AOT gathering, we have ignited the Lagos State Science Research and Innovation Council, a body consisting of private and public sector professionals tasked with intervening directly in the ecosystem through funding. The result to date has seen over 60 startups receive funding of between $5,000 and $12,000 in the past two years” he said.
Speaking further, Hamzat stated that in fulfilling this administration’s agenda of a Smart City, over 600 Smart Intelligent Video Surveillance Cameras as well as Intelligent Transportation Cameras for Traffic monitoring and management have been deployed across the state.
Earlier in his welcome address the founder of Eko Innovation Centre, Mr. Victor Afolabi said they want to bridge the gap between the tech able system players and policy makers, and the only way to have policy that benefits our people.
Meanwhile, the Commission for Science and Technology, Mr. Hakeem Fahm, also stated that for the state to experience total development throughout all facets of society, it is crucial to harness the youth’s energy in the appropriate way.