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Economy

FG Plans Nigeria Startup House in San Fransisco to Attract Investments

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Nigerian Government has approved plans to establish the Nigerian Digital Technology Exchange Programme Hub also known as Nigeria Startup House in San Francisco, United States, to drive investment and boost the visibility of the country’s startup ecosystem.

The Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy, Mr Bosun Tijani, disclosed that the approval for the conversion of the existing property of the Federal Government in San Francisco, USA was given by the Federal Executive Council in Abuja, Nigeria, on Tuesday.

According to the Minister, this sits firmly in our desire as a ministry to position Nigeria as a significant player in the global technology landscape.

He noted that the project draws the attention of local tech ecosystem players and investors as key indicators of the government’s commitment to addressing the country’s connectivity and startup funding objectives.

“As we work towards achieving key elements of our Trade and IEC Strategic Blueprint Pillars, the Nigerian Startup House will play a critical role in promoting Nigeria’s economic interest, attracting Foreign Direct Investment, and improving the visibility and positioning of Nigeria’s Startup Ecosystem to attract funding and expertise from global markets and organisations represented in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond,” Mr Tijani said.

The San Francisco Bay Area, and nearby Silicon Valley, are recognised globally as a major source of startup ecosystem funding, with a combined GDP value of just over $929 billion and is home to over 200 of the largest companies in the world by revenue.

The Bay Area, which includes San Francisco and the metropolitan areas that surround it (such as San Jose metros), is designated as a concentration location for venture capital in the US. According to data provided by Crunchbase, the percentage of venture capital funding in the US that was allocated to businesses located in the Bay Area jumped by 40 per cent in 2023.

“In addition, most of the $1.3 billion funding sourced by Nigerian technology startups in 2023 alone came from Venture Capital funds in the Bay Area,” the minister noted.

“While the ownership of the Nigeria Startup House will remain with the Federal Government, represented by the Federal Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy and Nigeria Ministry of Foreign Affairs it will be managed by a consortium of Nigerian digital technology companies who will provide non-public funding for the operations of the Startup House,” he added.

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