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Youth tasked on innovative ideas

An associate professor, Electrical Electronic Engineering at the University of Lagos, (UNILAG), Abiodun Gbenga-Ilori has attributed lack of entrepreneurial education as the bane hindering the…

An associate professor, Electrical Electronic Engineering at the University of Lagos, (UNILAG), Abiodun Gbenga-Ilori has attributed lack of entrepreneurial education as the bane hindering the creativity of some young ones to build innovation.

Gbenga-Ilori stated this while highlighting the achievements of Project Innovation to Market (I2M)- an initiative of the Innovation and Technology Management Office (ITMO) of the University of Lagos Nigeria.

She stressed that the initiative was established in 2023 to identify and serve as a helping hand for innovators from their ideation to getting their product ready for the market.

“We are supposed to fund anybody that has proof of concepts that has created any innovation. We fund them with prototype funding and intellectual property filing so that they own their products before taking it to funders.

“We support them with business registration and start-up funding because we have a lot of youths that want to create something. A lot of them use their personal fund to create but they don’t have the support required to get the product to the market,” she said.

She disclosed that 702 people applied for the inaugural edition while 524 were onboarded with 62 prototype funded and 50 started incubated with a grant seed worth N850,000, adding that the process for the second edition has

“Students need to be supported to start these businesses because research shows that the first five years of business is very critical. So, if you want to do business and stay afloat in the first few years, it is going to be disastrous, that is why a project like ours is very useful to stabilise,” she said.

One of the beneficiaries of the initiative, Tolulope Adebayo said the cohort has helped to speed up his business.