South-West Regional eCommerce Summit & Expo 2018: Press Briefing Full Recap

An interactive Press session towards the South-West Regional eCommerce Summit & Expo 2018, held on the  9th March 2018 at DAWN Commission Office, 10th floor Cocoa Building, Ibadan. Present at the press session were various representatives from media and press firms which include AIIT, Punch Newspaper, Ibadan Insider and Teams form Nustreams Conference & Culture Centre and IBridge Hub.

The people on the panel session were Mr. Francis Madojemu, Founder & CEO, Nustreams Conference & Culture, IBridge Hub who is also the organizer of South-West Regional eCommerce & Expo 2018; Mr. Seye Oyeleye, Ag. Director General, Pastor Ladi Thompson and Mr. Parqueens Irabor, Bank of Industry.

From the Left, Mr parqueen Ihabor, Mr Seye Oyeleye, Mr. Francis Madojemu and Pastor Ladi Thompson

Mr. Francis started the panel session by citing that in the early 1960-1970s; during the oil boom, Gen.Gowon regime; one of the brilliant actions was the building of highways between cities in Nigeria, recording the largest road networks in Africa, which became highways for trade, people could move their goods and services.

He described that one of the terms to find about Internet is that it will be called The Internet super-highway, and that what internet has done to us is to replicates these highways through technology so that somebody living in places like Ibadan can sell his or her products and services to anyone in the face of this world without leaving his or her house.
In South-West, we are one of the largest purchasers of these online platforms, so much that the big companies like Jumia and Konga had both pick-up and drop-off centers in Ibadan but in the last few years, but they have shut down the pickups leaving the drop-off centers which logically means we are not selling our products but just buying and no country not to think of a state, will prosper if they keep consuming everything they produce alone; we must learn to sell. We have products and services that we need to sell to the world and if we don’t get into the internet, we are going to be miss out on the greatest development in the world since printing press started.
The theme for this Southwest Regional E-Commerce & Expo is “ The Future is Here and We’re already Late” and we have invited over 40 leading companies in Nigeria and some in Ibadan, with over 35 Lecturers to give instructions and encourage people in this part of this world to come online. This summit is designed to teach and expose people to meet some of these platforms, on how they work lay off their fears about online-shopping and understanding the risk factors but also to create opportunities for people in the south-west
He emphasized that the solution to any problem we face will only be found in Innovation and creativity and not just criticism or hoping that one government somewhere will help but we must all work together to find solutions to the problems we are facing. He cited that there are young men and women in this state who make amazing stuff that people in places like New York will love to buy even at five times prices of what people here buy but there is no one to stand between them to get the products out of the country and here is the technology to help them.

The next remark was from Mr. Seye, who introduced what DAWN Commission which means Developmental Agenda for Western Nigeria and recently referred as the intellectual arm of the south0-west government with over 4 years of existence. He described DAWN Commission as a dedicated agency set up by the Government of the States of Western Nigeria to pursue a regional strategy before mobilizing and harnessing latent regional endowments, strengths, and capacities to move the Region on the path towards predictable progress.
He announced the organization’s partnership with Nustreams Conference & Culture Center and IBridge Hub to organize the South-West Regional eCommerce & Expo 2018; which is in tandem with the mission of the commission especially on issues that border on Economic competitiveness, Social and Human Development and Competitive Identity of the region.
He explained that E-commerce offered many advantages to companies and customers; a growing industry with many opportunities, challenges and infrastructure needs but offers a glimpse into the future. He emphasized that the summit will educate, inform and inspire a new generation of E-entrepreneurs; also an event focused on connecting people with human & technology resources as well as relevant products and services that are essential for both development and production of individuals, organizations, and institutions to help empower them for sustainable progression and prolific development for the society.

Mr. Pacqueens Irabor

The next speaker was Mr. Pacqueens Irabor from Bank of Industry (BOI), he expressed the organization pleasure to be part of the train birthing this pacesetter innovation. He remarked that BOI believes so much in supporting Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMEs); which they have been doing for the past 11years with the South-West investment of close to 200 billion naira with Lagos inclusive, which control 70-80% of the total investment; and Oyo state covering over 20 billion investment for SMEs.
He mentioned that one of the challenges faced by SMEs has always been Market, as it is one thing to make finance available to build capital assets and another thing to have a market as, without a market, investment is actually in shambles from the start.
He also said that this summit will provide the visibility for SMEs that has been helped with finance which is why BOI is so keen on the project. It is important to know that humanity needs the community to create prosperity and the online world just created the community; while BOI will be an enabler of the community by providing finances that people need, which is going to be a long-term finance also called Patience Capital.

From Left: Mr Seye, Mr Francis and Pastor Ladi Thompson

To conclude the panelist session was Pastor Ladi Thompson, who described himself as a Strategist Consultant. He started out by saying the innovation brought about by Mr. Francis should be put to record because what is being introduced is called Disruptive Technology which reminded him of 1954 when the South-West was backward for many years until the introduction of disruptive technology by Obafemi Awolowo through developments like WNTV (1959) Liberty Stadium (1960), Wema Bank (1945) Cocoa House (1965) and many others.
He said the new disruptive technology should be able to bring South-West back to where it’s used to be and more so, beyond. He made mention of the remembrance of Mr. Famakinwa, who used to be the Director of DAWN commission and how he looked forward to a day like this.
He concluded by appreciating the efforts of the South-West governors- Gov. Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo State), Gov. Raifu Aregbesola (Osun state) and other states which include Ondo, Ogun and Lagos State. He also mentioned that through this disruptive technology, many will be able to leave an inheritance for their children.

Press representatives

Press Crew

After the Panelist session, the Press was asked to contribute and among the contributors were:

  • Yinka, The Nation; who asked two questions which include- If we are really late for the future and if yes, how late? and how much has the Bank of Industry made available to support E-commerce Innovation?
  • Olalekan, Dawn Commission; who asked two questions also- What are the logistics that have been put in place so that this technology wouldn’t end the career people have been building? And how has BOI been involved in disseminating of information from the organization especially as regards release of funds?
  • Ifeoluwa, IbadanInsideralso mentioned that Internet has a Culture and bringing this innovation to South-West regions requires imbibing the culture, what are the systems put in place as regards this?
  • Olamide, IbadanInsider; Also asked what are the checks to avoid frauds through this innovation.

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