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Reminiscing on Connect Nigeria’s e-Business Fair 2018

After weeks of anticipation, we finally concluded the e-business Fair with a bang. The event was live streamed for those who couldn’t make it. For days all we could talk about was the many brilliant moments at the Fair. Here are a few highlights from this year’s amazing Fair:

  1. The N100,000 challenge by Shade Ladipo

During the last discussion session, a misunderstood statement by Okechukwu Ofili caused quite a bit of a stir. As the panelists tried to clarify the fact that sustaining a business is harder than getting funds for a startup, the host decided to make the point literal. For one minute each, random attendees were given the floor to pitch how they can repay a loan of one hundred thousand Naira offered by Shade Ladipo in one month. Shade was ready to give out that cash on the spot but none of the selected few had a worthy pitch. They all did not attach real-time figures to their proposition. Now that was a learning point. It just went to prove that you never really lose in life, a missed opportunity is a chance to gain wisdom for future happenstance.

  1. The Bustling Exhibition hall

The discussion forum took a thirty-minute break for attendees to get lunch, stretch their legs, use the loo and visit the exhibition stand. On display was a wide range of goods and services. From plantain flour, Adire cloths, jewelry, artworks, statement tees, hand-made handbags and print clothes for children to Real estate property, pension funds, recruitment for charity walks, and lots more. The hall was bustling amidst the raffle draw segment organized by Connect Nigeria. Thirty minutes break was apparently not enough to exhaust all that the exhibition center had to offer because there was so much to keep participants engaged.

  1. The amazing four panelists sessions

We were so captivated by the quality of speakers and the depth of content they delivered that it was hard to notice that each session was up to two hours. The participants intelligently asked questions, and the panelists did a great job of providing adequate answers. There were lots of Aha! Moments as the revelation of things were unfolded. The surprise speakers (who weren’t given publicity before the program) were a fantastic addition to an already high expectation. And their delivery was on point. It is hard to say which session stood out the most. Every speaker had something unique to bring to the table.

  1. Where the ladies at?

Having a hall full of people with tons of questions can be intimidating. But the host did not let it slip by her that the ladies were being reserved. So she insisted on a Q and A session where only females were to ask questions. If the panels have been diverse with lots of amazing ladies accomplishing a lot in different fields, then it was equally important to have women ask questions. And trust the young ladies, their questions were not gender based.

The most resounding request was the need for mentorship. When you come face to face with veterans in your field or relevant fields to yours, it is not surprising that a discourse on mentorship will come up. To watch for yourself the astounding discussion forums, visit ConnectNigeria.com YouTube channel.

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Ann Esievoadje

Ann Esievoadje is a freelance writer who is passionate about encouraging a reading culture and personal development. She has authored two books, The Quilt (fiction) and Being Mummy and Me (non-fiction). She manages Pulchra Publishing which offers a content creation/editing, transcription, different forms of writing (including Ghostwriting) service and her blog, Life Love and Anything Goes at annesievoadje.blogspot.com.ng. You can reach her at annesievoadje@gmail.com

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Adelakun Abiola

    8th February 2018 at 4:32 pm

    The last session of the programme is quite amazing given the insight of what an SME should know to sustain, maintain and to pitch from within. The panelists really has an impact on all participant, exhibitor and sponsor as well, I really hope it helps Nigerian wishing to invest in the country as a whole.

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