Nigeria should support and preserve innovative minds, says RayedTech CEO
The founder and Chief Executive Officer of RayedTech 2019, Raymond Ediale, spoke on how he built his business into one of the largest databases for IT solutions in Nigeria with about 90 employees.
What is your background and how it relates to the average Nigerian youth?
Like any young person, I ask a lot of questions in my pre-teen and adolescent years. This was before the Internet and search engines were widely used. So, I couldn’t simply check the Internet. My nearest sources of information then were my older brothers because they know more than I do and, I frequently visited the library in Warri, Delta State.
Well, everyone’s story has a developmental phase with a mix of good, bad, and neutral life-shapers. If you stroll towards the seemingly irrelevant, yet positive influences of your life, you will be positioning yourself to ride the wave toward defining yourself as the person you would be proud of introducing to other people.
What is your educational background and experience?
In Warri where I was born, I attended Aunty Fanny Primary School and Supreme College, respectively. After completing secondary school, I moved to Edo State for tertiary education, where I earned a National Diploma and a Higher National Diploma in Agricultural and Bio-environmental Engineering at Auchi Polytechnic.
I earned a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering at Oduduwa University in Osun State. Thereafter I relocated to South Africa’s Cape Town where I learnt and honed my coding skills; I began with web app development, where I built and maintained web applications and began my web hosting business, where I designed and hosted websites for clients.
After which I returned to Nigeria to launch RayedTech.com, a tech consultant firm, RayedHost.com, a web hosting firm and RMAT, an online marketplace platform.
What was your first paid job?
I would say that I did several paying jobs growing up. I’ll say my first job was photography because I saved up money to buy a photography camera while in secondary school. Then I saved up for a bicycle, and because of my passion for engineering and creativity, I learned how to repair and replace bicycle parts for myself and later, became a bicycle repairer, and I repair all the children’s bicycles in my neighborhood, as well as adults’ bicycles.
I moved into tailoring, which I learned from my mother, who was a tailor at the time. I did this for many years, and I frequently made clothes for my classmates while I was in university. And now I find myself as an app developer with several companies.
Can you speak on what led to the creation of RayedHost.com?
I am currently involved in a tech consulting company, RayedTech, and an online marketplace, RMAT, which enables buyers and sellers to advertise their products.
I got inspired to start up RayedTech while I was still in South Africa when I noticed that Africa is gradually embracing technology, which will lead to an increase in the demand for tech professionals. My ideas for tech and app design at the time were, at best, a well-researched hypothesis.
So, I returned to Nigeria to put them to the test, and the outcomes have proven my assumptions.
What informed your decision to establish RayedHost, and your expectations for the platform?
Well, I used to design websites and applications for clients, which I normally host on hosting platforms such as Hostinger and Godaddy. So, I thought it would be a good and profitable idea for me to start my own web hosting company that is cheap and affordable, as well as based in Africa, to allow youngweb developers team to test and host their work online and also pay with a Nigerian debit card or a local bank transfer.
What are the real or perceived threats to the Nigerian innovation space?
When innovators are drawn into fields that pay well but do not require innovation, this poses a potential threat to innovation.
This draws attention to the country’s high unemployment rate. As a result, we all have a duty to support and preserve innovative minds in order for Nigeria to achieve more.
What can unemployed youth who are interested in entrepreneurship do in current circumstances to become successful business owners?
They should carefully study their area of interest. True innovation comes in part from a thorough understanding of how a particular field operates.
Today, RayedHost and RayedTech reach over 200million people; this would not be possible if those who work there did not have a thorough understanding of the job. Every day, we create and improve, which is something that all entrepreneurs must achieve if they are to make a difference.
However, every prospective entrepreneur must be aware of and prepared for the challenges that all entrepreneurs face. Managing a growing team is a daily challenge that must be overcome. Of course, there are the standard ‘Nigerian problems’ of power and Internet.
If you were not a software developer, what would you be?
I’d probably be in a different field, but I’d probably still be a fashion designer, or perhaps working as an agriculture engineer on a farm.
What are your thoughts on Nigerian entrepreneurs?
I’m not quite ready to make an investment yet. However, there is no denying that Nigerian entrepreneurs are among the best in the world.