Thursday, 21st September 2023

Entrepreneurs must leverage more on technology to drive growth, says Hamzat

By Adelowo Adebumiti
07 June 2023   |   12:36 pm
Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, has advised entrepreneurs to leverage more on technology for business growth and development.

Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, has advised entrepreneurs to leverage more on technology for business growth and development.

The deputy governor, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Independent National Electoral Commission, Lagos State, Dr Shakirudeen Onasanya, gave the advice at the 5th A.M. Agoro Entrepreneurship Lecture at Yoruba Tennis Club, Onikan, Lagos.

The lecture series is a yearly event established four years ago in honour of the late Abudu Mukandasi Agoro, a legendary entrepreneur and elder statesman who was known for his tenacity and innovation in the business world.

Hamzat, who stated that technology can be science, engineering or ICT based, said combining these technologies would have impact on business growth as well competitiveness in the global economy.

Speaking on the topic ‘Leveraging Technology for Business Success and Growth’, the deputy governor said leveraging on technologies is not just enough, but Nigerians must also look at technology from the aspect of economic viability, environmental sustainability and social impact.

He said: “Technologies evolved to make businesses successful and economically viable. But we must also balance it with the environment. Will technology cause climate change? Will it cause air, water and noise pollution? And for technologies to be effective, it must be technologies that enhance sustainable development. And technologies that do not accentuate social issues. For example, one of the focuses of the government is to reduce youth unemployment and technologies that assist in creating more employment opportunities are those technologies we should promote.

“So, there should be a balance between economics, environment and social issues. Finally, it is important to continue to monitor the start-ups that we have empowered with funds today. How have they grown in the next 5 years? How many people have they employed in the next 5 years? How has their capital grown? How has their output grown?”

Hamzat said the late Pa Agoro in his lifetime from 1892 to 1948, was a man of means and a successful building contractor who contributed to the success Lagos enjoys today.

Group Managing Director, Caverton Group, Mr. Bode Makanjuola, said it is important to educate and redirect entrepreneurial business mode of operation in the country, by providing information, awareness, and contributing to knowledge that Small and Medium Entrepreneurs (SMEs) require to grow their businesses.

He said the insights and perspectives shared by speakers would be of immense value to entrepreneurs and business leaders in Nigeria and beyond.

Makanjuola paid tribute to the late business mogul, saying he distinguished himself as a dogged entrepreneur, building boats used for ferrying foods within Lagos riverine communities and houses in Lagos and Ibadan.

Vice Chairman of the Planning Committee, Dr Adrienne Tikolo, in her welcome address, said participants gathered with a shared passion for entrepreneurship, innovation, and the remarkable possibilities that technology offers to transform businesses and drive unprecedented growth and success.

She noted that in an era of rapid digital transformation, businesses must adapt and evolve to thrive in an increasingly competitive landscape.

Tikolo stressed that it is crucial to recognise the immense potential that lies within technology, and how it can serve as a catalyst for innovation, and sustainable growth.

“By leveraging our collective knowledge and experiences, we can pave the way for a future where businesses thrive, communities flourish, and society as a whole benefits from the positive impact of technology-driven entrepreneurship,” she said.

Tikolo hoped the lecture would fuel people’s determination to explore new frontiers and harness technology for the greater good of Nigerian businesses and society.

Panelists at the event include Commercial Manager, Ruff ‘n’ Tumble, Faith Ese; Growth Head, SME, Now now Digital System, Charles Odogwu; Product Manager, Carbon, Ogunbanwo Oluwaseyi and Founder, Xtreme, Idris Adeniji, among others.

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