In its bid to bring together like-minded achievers and make a difference in technological adoption to drive economic growth, Africa Fintech Foundry’s (AFF) Disrupt 2019 conference, themed Digital Gold Rush: Building a Sustainable Tech Economy, held at the Landmark Event Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos.
Powered by Access Bank, AFF’s conference had about 10,000 participants who came together to witness the progress that can be achieved, by using technology as a driver for innovation and disruption in various industries to build a sustainable tech economy,
The conference had in attendance tech moguls and companies, industry leaders, tech enthusiasts and start-ups, venture capitalists and entrepreneurs from the world-over. The 2019 Disrupt Conference featured; a keynote address, panel discussions, fireside chats, master classes, live demo presentations and exhibitions.
Giving the opening speech titled, “The Future of the Intelligent Bank”, Dr. Herbert Wigwe ; CEO and Group Managing Director, Access Bank, walked the audience through the past 40 years of banking and the changes that technology will bring to the industry saying, “Banks are now competing on how innovation can provide solutions, handle and predict consumer behavior incredibly quickly. Banks who want to remain competitive must leverage technology such as data analytics and artificial intelligence (AI). Today, becoming an intelligent bank is not optional, but necessary.”
In reference to the conference, Dr. Wigwe said, “Today is a gathering of the best technology brains ready to re-define the future of intelligent Banks and Fintechs. I encourage you all to discuss, postulate and begin conversations that will create new disruptions in our industry.”
Head, Africa Fintech Foundry, Segun Adeniyi, echoed these sentiments saying, “One of the key aims of AFF’s Disrupt Conference is to help innovators harness the power of their innovations, give them a platform to test and go to market, as well as provide them unparalleled access to global financial, technology, business, and investor partner networks. We work to enable the move of brilliant, tested ideas into the market and continually disrupt the technological ecosystem in that process.”
Five tech start-ups; Trep Labs (HealthTech), Smart Teller (FinTech), Kaoshi (FinTech), Gricd (HealthTech) and Seso (PropTech), had the opportunity to pitch their technological solutions, each of which were designed to solve problems within their sector of the economy. The start-ups were scored based on the originality of their solution, customer validation, business module, product quality, and readiness, and evaluated by a seasoned panel of judges.
Oghenetega Lortim; Founder of Gricd, an IoT startup providing affordable, portable and active cold chain devices for efficient storage of vaccines, blood and other health/agricultural products, emerged the winner of the demo and was awarded with the sum of $10,000. Kaoshi, founded by Chukwunonso Arinze and Princess Oti, and Smart Teller founded by Ogunwande Oluwole emerged the first and second runner ups, respectively.
An elated Oghenetega had many accolades for the Disrupt 2019 conference saying, “I thank AFF for giving me an opportunity and extending my runway as a start-up which ordinarily is difficult to establish and maintain. I advise other start-ups to focus on the problems that exist and try to solve them.”
Beyond directly awarding start-ups, the one-day conference filled to capacity proved the place to be for tech enthusiasts. With panels, speeches and masterclasses that covered topics such as The Future of Gaming and Artificial Intelligence, Regulation Technology, Disruptive Banking, Women in Technology, and Blockchain, and speakers who lead the global technology space, AFF’s Disrupt 2019 took giant strides in forming, evolving and nurturing Africa’s technological advancement.