Tuesday, June 17, 2014 3:44 pm
Lagos – Nigeria’s 15 million dollars (about N2.4 billion) Information and Communications Technology (ICT) venture capital fund for mitigating the sectors development needs will close at the end of June.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the ICT venture capital fund, floated by the Ministry of Communication and Technology, was inaugurated in August 2012.
The Minister of Communication and Technology, Mrs Mobolaji Johnson, made the disclosure on Tuesday in Lagos at a breakfast meeting of the Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce.
Johnsom said it was a pool fund to finance commercially viable projects and initiatives in the ICT sector.
Johnson, who declined to provide the status of the fund so far, only announced that the Nigeria Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) would anchor it and contribute about 3.6 million dollars (about N576 million).
She said that 11.4 million dollars (about N1.8 billion) would be sourced from local and international investors and that the fund would be managed by independent managers with the nation’s ICT incubation team.
Johnson also said that the closure of the venture capital would be dependent on the availability of all the necessary facilities and on the approval of the Federal Government.
“We are looking to close the fund by the end of June after which the investments will start.
“The fund will be used to build excellent locally made innovations in ICT.
“The fund managers are looking for ideas that have failed due to lack of assistance and so it’s more like we are investing in the person and his innovation,” she said.
“So, all you need to get access to this fund is a good idea and a sense of entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation which can in turn create room for other opportunities.
“We are also trying to build a long-term fund that the returns may not necessarily be spontaneous, it could take like 10 to 15 years.
“The African Development Bank is in partnership with us on broadband and so will be funding some infrastructure companies on a long-term basis.”