Whenever I have opportunity of speaking with Startup founders, the first thing on the agenda is always the issue of funding. Many people believe that the main reason why we don’t see many thriving businesses in Nigeria is lack of funding. While this may be true, there are many other reasons.
One other reason I have noticed among Nigeria Startups is lack of enough information about their industry. Most people assume that things will take shape as long as they have access to the funding they need. But things are becoming clearer now.
As part of its plan to ensure that Startups get the exposure they deserve and also access to funding, the Mobile Monday Nigeria team held Pitch Monday on 25 July 2011. Pitch Monday brought together about 13 Angel investors, Seed stage investors, and Venture Capitals. 13 Startups were given few minutes to pitch their services / solutions for investment. While some of these Startups show full understanding of their business, competitors and the industry, many still have a lot of work to do as regards pitching for investments. I will be using this write-up to highlight some of the Startups that pitched at the event.
As I stated above, there were pitched from 13 different Startups and they ranged from games to mobile solutions. Some of these Startups were products of Garage48 and Tech-In Series.
- MyCash: MyCash is a mobile application that enables users to keep track of their spending daily. A user will be able to create expense lists and share the list with a third party. Users will also be allowed to synchronise their account with the MyCash server and view reports of their spending habits and tips on how to save. This is currently in Alpha phase and the service is expected to be live shortly.
- Resident Report: Residents Report – RR® – is a Social Innovation application that “puts the city in your hands. The company wants to create a platform that allows citizens/residents to decide the destiny of their communities and gets public service agencies to do their jobs accountably. The RR platform will help residents bring their everyday neighbourhood concerns into the light. It turns citizen complainers into neighborhood fixers and it gives people all the tools they need to not only spot problems but get government to correct them in a prompt, cost-effective manner. RR will be available both as mobile & web apps.
- OurPrayerBox: Have you always wished you had access to a platform that allows you to connect with people that share the same religion belief as you? Are you looking for prayer partners and it seems nobody is available? Are you a pastor or imam and looking for a platform to engage your congregation in prayers? Then, OurPrayerBox is your answer. The company seeks to create a solution that will help you share prayer points.
- mPower: mPower is MobilityNigeria’s initiative to push low-end smartphones into the hands of tens of millions of Nigerians who have never had access to the Internet. Through mPower, the company seeks to sell sub-N20,000 smartphones and train people around the country to activate and use mobile Internet on those devices.
- Traffic.com.ng: The service is aimed primarily at helping Lagosians reduce stress and the time they spend on the road moving from one point to another. User will get access to up-to-the-minute traffic status / information within the state. The company is currently using a crowdsourcing model to gather the traffic information in different areas in the state and this is being done on a voluntarily basis. The data is available across various platforms: mobile, web and SMS.
If you were at Pitch Monday and like to share your experience, kindly use the form below to add your comments.
Pitch Monday was sponsored by Dealfish Nigeria while Mobitel Nigeria provided free internet access for all participants. Dealfish is a leading free classifieds site where you can find ads from your neighbourhood. The company focuses on ease of use and up-to-date ads. Mobitel, on the the hand, is the pioneer provider of real broadband service in Nigeria with speed starting at 1MB and with capacity to hit 100Mbps for Homes and Offices. Mobitel differentiates on consistency and reliability of speed compared to the current segment leaders.