The Federal Government on Thursday sealed an agreement of $11m (N2.17bn) with the Japanese Government for an emergency improvement of electricity supply facilities in Abuja.
The project to be implemented by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency and the Ministry of Power is aimed at procuring and installing power capacitor banks at the existing two sub-stations in Abuja and neighbouring Nasarawa State.
This, according to the agreement, will decrease the transmission loss and assist in stabilising power supply to approximately 7,000 households within the Federal Capital Territory.
The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udo Udoma, signed the pact on behalf of the Federal Government, while the Ambassador of Japan to Nigeria, Sadanobu Kusaoke, signed on behalf of his country.
He noted that the project had been designed to support Nigeria in promoting social-economic and infrastructural development.
Udoma said, “The sustained implementation of this project is expected to pave way for a significant access to quality socio-economic services, thereby leading to reduction in unemployment in the country and promoting community empowerment.
“The Federal Government remains committed to working closely with various stakeholders in the economy to achieve sustainable economic development. This ministry will ensure that we create an enabling environment required for the sustainability of this partnership.”
When asked by journalists how a padded budget was sent to the National Assembly without the ministry detecting the figures, the minister replied that such an occurrence was not unusual with budget proposals.
He said the issue was currently being discussed with the National Assembly and would soon be resolved.
Udoma said, “It (padding) is normal in a budget process. Proposals are presented, sometimes issues are on and they are sorted out. So, it is fairly routine and it shouldn’t be over emphasized.
“These are routine things, which are resolved as they come up; and so, it’s not an issue and we are discussing amicably with the National Assembly.”
In his remarks, the Japanese envoy said Nigeria’s power sector had been one of the priority in his country’s development cooperation with Nigeria.
Kusaoke said, “The power sector is a key to improve the quality of life for people and also to promote industry. Power supply is one of the determinant factors when both domestic and foreign investors decide whether or not to invest in a county.
Property Tech Company, VENCO Secures $670,000 Pre-Seed Funding
The company stated that the fund will be deployed to scale its all-in-one technology platform
Nigeria property technology company, VENCO has secured $670,000 in an oversubscribed pre-seed funding round.
The company stated that the fund will be deployed to scale its all-in-one technology platform that manages collections, service charge administration, utilities, and visitor access, among other services associated with multi-unit property developments across Africa.
Founded by Chude Osiegbu (CEO), Reagan Mbitiru (CTO), and Uzochukwu Alor (COO), VENCO already has a growing presence in both Nigeria and Kenya with the plan to expand to other cities and countries in Africa.
The CEO, Chude Osiegbu stated that VENCO was used by 100 estates on about 4000 property units in 2021. He added that the startup is currently in 186 estates with about 12,000 property units and now has larger estates like Banana Island and 1004 in its roster.
Although Osiegbu noted that the company presently relies on subscription fees that it charges for the deployment of its software solution, he nevertheless stated that VENCO has a long-term plan to introduce a number of monetised operations.
He added that the startup already helped finance the purchase of prepaid energy meters for the Primewater View Gardens estate, and the Tejuosho Market, a shopping mall.
In the last 9 months, VENCO says it has recorded over 200 percent growth, currently in 6 cities in Nigeria and Kenya.
Dating from the beginning of this year, VENCO noted that it has processed more than $10 million in transaction value via its platform. The company added that it is already in talks with e-commerce platforms to enable easier access to merchants within and around the community.
Investors King learnt that some of the investors that participated in the pre-seed funding round include Zrosk Investment Management, Voltron Capital, Decimal Point Ventures, Fast Forward Fund, Tayo Oviosu (CEO of Paga), Odun Eweniyi (COO of Piggyvest), Oo Nwoye, Desigan Chinniah, Dakar Network Angels and Viktoria Business Angel Network.
Speaking at the event, Samson Esemuede, Managing Director and Chief Investment Officer at Zrosk Investment Management, said, “ We view VENCO as both a SaaS and a financial inclusion play with a potential for strong multiplicative impact across the continent.”
Instant Payment Transactions to Surpass 376 Billion Globally by 2027
The number of instant payment transactions to grow by 289% globally exceed 376 billion globally by 2027; increasing from 97 billion in 2022
A new study has found that the number of instant payment transactions will exceed 376 billion globally by 2027; increasing from 97 billion in 2022, a 289% growth.
The study predicts that an increased roll-out of instant cross-border payment schemes in multiple countries will drive this growth by enabling businesses and consumers to benefit from greater speed and efficiency.
This efficiency is gained by processing payments over instant payment rails, which provide time and cost savings, while also offering greater transparency over transactions to stakeholders than traditional payment rails.
An instant payment is any payment outside of a card network that is capable of receiving funds in 10 seconds or under.
Regulators to Play Key Role in Cross-border Instant Payments
The report forecasts that cross-border transactions will grow at a faster rate than domestic transactions globally. It anticipates that cross-border transactions will rise from 631 million payments globally in 2022 to over 6 billion in 2027. The creation of instant payment schemes by international bodies, such as the EU, and an increase of bilateral agreements between these bodies will be key drivers of growth over the next five years.
These bodies will be essential in creating cross-border instant payment networks, as they have the capital and influence to connect disparate payment schemes across different geographical regions in order to maximise the value proposition of instant payments. In turn, the report recommends that regulators increase partnerships with international bodies to broaden payment schemes and expand access to instant payment services.
Greater Efficiency to Drive Business Adoption
Additionally, the report predicts that the increased time and cost efficiencies, and the improved cashflow management of using instant payments will be primary factors in influencing businesses to adopt. This will contribute to the total value of instant payment transactions rising from $6 trillion this year, to $33 trillion in 2027.
5000 Startups From Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa Completed Google Training Programme
No less than 5000 startups from Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa have completed the Google Hustle Academy training programme.
No less than 5000 startups from Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa have completed the Google Hustle Academy training programme. The programme was designed to help business owners learn soft skills that complement their hard talents.
Investors King learnt that Google received more than 10,000 applications for this year’s edition.
It could be recalled that earlier this year, Google announced a plan to train 5,000 African Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) with participants coming from Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa.
Google noted that participants will go through a training academy where they will undergo five days of hands-on training and receive 3,000 hours of training on fundamental aspects of business to help them navigate the challenges faced by SMEs in Africa.
According to the press statement released by Google Head of Brand & Reputation, Sub Sahara Africa, Mojolaoluwa Aderemi-Makinde after the completion of the training, participants attended a five-day virtual boot camp where they learned how to define their business strategy, increase sales, and how to pitch for investor funding.
While dividing them into 23 cohorts, they were also trained in digital marketing and effective financial planning.
This is in addition to the one-on-one mentoring sessions received by each participant. The mentoring session was handled by a network of trained mentors and coaches.
Meanwhile, Aderemi-Makinde further revealed that Google has launched a new speaker series in which successful African entrepreneurs share lessons and advice.
He added that Google will continue to do more to help African entrepreneurs and small businesses thrive.
“(The) speaker series will allow Small and Medium Businesses to get insight from business owners from an array of sectors, focusing on the issues, themes and subjects they face on a regular basis,” he said.
He stated that Small and medium-sized businesses are the backbone of the global economy while noting that in Africa, they account for an estimated 80 per cent of jobs.
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