We believe any young African can use technology to make their lives, that of their family or the world better. This is why we started NaijaHacks. When we started in 2018, our original plan was to have a small 100 person event where people worked on projects, won prizes, and got connected to jobs. We were inspired by our experience attending Hackathons at Stanford, Harvard, Waterloo, Princeton, and others and we wanted to bring what we experienced at those Hackathons to young Nigerians.
Over the years, our mission has remained to make opportunities available to all young Africans so that they can start their technology ventures or work at some of the world’s best companies. We aspire to be the platform that accelerates Africa’s technology adoption so that any young African can use technology to make their lives, that of their family or the world better. Supported by 32 sponsors and partners, in 2018, we became the biggest Hackathon in Nigeria, and in 2019, the biggest in Africa. 5,000+ young Africans are part of our community, and we have partnered with and got sponsorships from 100+ companies, including Amazon Web Services, BizSkills Academy, STEMHub Foundation, Particle, Bella Naija, Segment, Hubspot, Twillio, Stickermule, and many others.
To amplify our impact and reach more Africans, we are expanding and launching AfricaHacks. We will share more information about AfricaHacks, but for now, the mission is the same: new tech companies and more tech jobs for young Africans. To that end, we are excited to announce the Official AfricaHacks Member Event program starting with BothoHacks, in Botswana, and EthLagos, in Nigeria. BothoHacks will take place on March 16–17, 2020, at Botho University, Gaborone, Botswana, and EthLagos will take place on March 29-April 4, 2020, at Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria. You can apply for these Hackathons now!
As with all NaijaHacks events, AfricaHacks events are only the start of a process to create tech companies and connect participants to jobs. Sustainability and impact are at the core of NaijaHacks and AfricaHacks; hence, we do not host or support events just for the sake of having an event. To enable us to facilitate the creation of Tech Companies, we will accept top teams from AfricaHacks Member events to the AfricaHacks Incubator Program facilitated by our Official Startup Partner, Kingston, Canada based BizSkills Academy. During Incubation, teams will get business development training, mentorship, free tech infrastructure, and cloud services from Amazon Web Services, marketing, and sales services, training, and support from Hubspot and data and analytics tools and support from Segment in addition to other benefits.
To kickstart the NaijaHacks incubation program, we are excited to announce Cohort 1 of our Incubator. The teams were part of NaijaHacks in the past, and we are proud of the work they have done, and we look forward to seeing them rise higher and create jobs across Africa. Please, keep an eye out as we announce an African Hackathon for many other countries.