INDIAFRICA, a shared future which was launched in Nigeria in August 2011 at Lagos Business School is “a unique people to people and youth outreach programme that brings Africans and Indians together through competition, creative exchanges and collaboration”.
At the inaugural INDIAFRICA business venture competition organized by ‘theideaworks’ in collaboration with the Public Diplomacy Division, Ministry of External Affairs Government of India, three innovative and enterprising young people emerged lucky winners.
The finals which held in September at the City Hall, Lagos, featured presentations by 9 teams from Nigeria, Kenya, Uganda, South Africa and India.
Results were decided by a 9 member Grand Jury that included Jahman Anikulapo, Editor of The Guardian on Sunday; Enase Okonedo, Dean, Lagos Business School; Ini Onuk, Sustainability Expert and CEO Thistlepraxis Consulting and others.
Pilonam Kumari from India with her idea of a solar powered harvester: Zubaida Bai also from India with her novel health-care venture and Kennedy Kithake and Kola Bayole of South Africa, for their interesting education venture, and Bhiraw Kumar Mandal of India for his innovative hydrogen based energy solution emerged first, second and joint third place winners with cash prizes of $10,000, $7,500 and $5,000 respectively.
Pilonam Kumari and Kennedy Kithake also earned a trip to Davos 2013 as the top ranked Indian and African winners.
In her address, the Chair of the jury Enase Okonedo, Dean Lagos Business School stated that the competition “Is expected to harness entrepreneurship and the opportunities that exist between India and Africa .
Joint Secretary Public Diplomacy Division, Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, Ms. Riva Ganguly Das described the initiative as a successful ” Public-Private partnership bringing the youth of Africa and India closer in an innovative and enterprising relationship. She disclosed that a total of 153 qualified entries from some best institutions from 20 countries with Nigeria accounting for the highest number of entries from Africa, were received.