As part of the FATE Foundation (FATE) drive to promote research and policy on entrepreneurship in Nigeria, FATE recently presented preliminary findings from an ongoing research to map the Nigerian Entrepreneurship Ecosystem. The presentation was made at FATE’s 2nd Annual Policy Dialogue Series on Entrepreneurship with the theme “Nurturing Public & Private Sector Collaborations for Entrepreneurship Growth and Development in Nigeria” which took place on the 29th of September at the Four Points by Sheraton Hotel, Lagos.

The Nigerian Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Mapping Report which was developed with the financial support of FORD Foundation and Bank of Industry (BOI) and technical support from KPMG, showed key factors necessary to drive entrepreneurship growth and development in Nigeria. These factors include; Policy & Regulation, Access to Business Support, Access to Finance, Research & Development, Access to Markets, Infrastructure, and Entrepreneurship Culture etc. While the Report revealed that Nigeria had a strong entrepreneurial culture and a large market, there were notable areas of improvement around policy and regulation, quality capacity building and business support programs, structured funding programs and an assessment framework for business support development partners.

Presenting the key findings from the Report to an audience of about 180 Public and Private sector stakeholders, Bisi Lamikanra, Partner & Head, Advisory Services, KPMG, who also heads the research team working on the Mapping Report, noted that the Nigerian Government needed to invest in creating an enabling environment, develop consistent policies, institute appropriate funding policies, support high impact sectors such as the agricultural sector and enable access to data across sectors.

Providing an international perspective at the Dialogue, Rocio Fonseca, Executive Director of Start-Up Chile shared the Start-Up Chile story and showed how Chile which was relatively unknown shot to prominence as the number one accelerator/incubator nation in Latin America and one of the top ten in the world. With Government support and financial investment, Start-Up Chile today, boasts over 5000 jobs, over 1300 companies worth $1.3billion and continues to churn out 250 companies annually. Rocio pointed out that with a population of 170 million, Nigeria towered in comparison to Chile whose population is 17 million and could accomplish phenomenal feats if the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector focused on achieving one or two implementable goals.

Speaking at the event, Adenike Adeyemi, Executive Director, FATE Foundation called for healthy collaborations and synergy between Public & Private Sector stakeholders within the ecosystem for the sustainable growth of Nigerian businesses and the development of a vibrant entrepreneurship ecosystem. The panel members who included Rocio Fonseca and Bisi Lamikanra also discussed possible strategies to adopt in fostering collaborations between the public and private sectors. The other panel members were; Mr. Tunji Elesho, Managing Partner, Growth Capital Fund, CcHub; Mr. Monday Ewans, Director, Policy Advocacy and Coordination, SMEDAN; and Mrs. Adefunto Adegoke, Director, Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment.

Key agreements from the Dialogue would be incorporated into the full Report on the Mapping of the Nigerian Entrepreneurship Ecosystem and will be launched in the last quarter of 2016.

The 2016 Policy Dialogue Series on Entrepreneurship in Pictures