Explainer: Why Nigeria’s Central Bank has anchored electricity bills collection on banks

avantegarde August 28, 2020 No Comments

Explainer: Why Nigeria’s Central Bank has anchored electricity bills collection on banks

None of Nigeria’s 11 electricity distribution companies are profitable businesses. None has reached breakeven point. From the privately-owned ones spread across 8 states and the Federal Capital, to Yola Electricity Distribution Company which the federal government took over last December, the consumer-facing sector of the industry is saddled with debt and inefficiency. These DisCos (as the distribution companies are called) should be providing returns on investment to the generation companies (GenCos) and gas suppliers that power the nation’s 4000MW national grid. But that has not been happening since the privatization of electricity delivery in Nigeria nearly a decade ago. Quick background on Nigeria’s power sector In 2011, Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) was unbundled, leading to the creation of 6 GenCos and 11 DisCos. The overwhelming majoirty are privately owned. Through its giant high-voltage, high-tension wires and steel towers, the government-owned Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) connects GenCos to DisCos. DisCos […]

Read More

Amin Ameen on building a super engaged online community

avantegarde August 26, 2020 No Comments

Amin Ameen on building a super engaged online community

My Life In Tech is putting human faces to some of the innovative startups, investments and policy formations driving the technology sector across Africa. Amin Ameen has created a growing and loyal community of individuals looking at life through art lenses and leveraging technology tools to upskill, improve their earning potential and get inspired to create. For this week’s My Life in Tech, Ameen talks about founding and growing her community, organising engaging virtual events and her delicate balancing act. Three years ago, at an art district in Paris, Amin Ameen made an Instagram post with the hashtag #EverythingNaArt for the first time and urged people to use it on their posts; a call to action. “I’ve always believed that everything in this life is art,” Ameen says, and the hashtag by which her community and brand is now named, was born out of this ideology. The idea of everything viewed through the […]

Read More

The man behind Zambia’s foremost innovation hub

avantegarde August 25, 2020 No Comments

The man behind Zambia’s foremost innovation hub

My Life In Tech is putting human faces to some of the innovative startups, investments, and policy formations driving the technology sector across Africa. Lukonga Lindunda has been pivotal in the startup ecosystem in Zambia. In this edition of My Life in Tech, the earnest 37-year old spoke with me from Lusaka on two occasions, about the ecosystem, its growth over the years, what investments look like in the country and how the government needs to better strategise for the future of technology. In 2011, Lukonga Lindunda and his co-founders launched BongoHive in a one room space inside the ministry of education’s office complex in Lusaka. Nine years later, much of the startup activity in the southern-central African country has been spurred and continues to be supported by the hub and its diverse range of activities, partnerships and programs. Lindunda was born and raised in Ndola, a city north of Lusaka and […]

Read More

Nigeria moves to regulate its logistics sector, but new requirements threaten all players

avantegarde August 2, 2020 No Comments

Nigeria moves to regulate its logistics sector, but new requirements threaten all players

Nigeria moves to regulate its logistics sector In June, Safeboda celebrated 100,000 rides in Ibadan. It was a reminder to mobility players in Lagos of what might have been. And now new regulations may also see small logistics companies struggle.  On Saturday, July 25, hundreds of concerned Nigerians used the hashtag #SaynotoNIPOSTfees to protest new regulations imposed on logistics companies. There have been talks around the regulation of logistics companies in Lagos for months, with the Courier Regulatory Department, the regulatory part of Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) having shared a letter showing a new licencing regime in May. Although the regulations are from the federal government, there’s hardly any city where the effects would be felt as much as Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial capital. In Lagos, dispatch riders have been popular for years. In a congested city  struggling with bad roads and traffic, moving things around is a service that is always in […]

Read More

Negative Oil Price and How it Affects Nigeria

avantegarde April 23, 2020 No Comments

Negative Oil Price and How it Affects Nigeria

For the first time in the history of trading US crude, West Texas Intermediate, its benchmark, is trading in negative territory. While this is not good news for oil-producing countries, here are a few questions to help you better understand the situation.

Read More