The month of August has been dedicated to the Coding/Programming Startups in the Nigerian tech ecosystem. We will be discussing the history of these startups, their founder(s), unique selling point and their journey in the tech space of Nigeria. First on the list of startups is TechCabal.
Created in 2013, TechCabal is a future-focused publication that speaks of African innovation and technology in depth. In addition to high-quality articles, reports and expert opinions on the main website, TechCabal publishes the TC Daily newsletter, the most comprehensive roundup of technology around Africa and manages the Radar forum, which hosts the smartest conversations about technology on the continent.
TechCabal.com is Africa’s fastest-growing tech blog covering technology, start-ups, mobile and digital media. Founded by Bankole Oluwafemi who doubles as the founder and editor-in-chief and Seyi Taylor, the co-founder and group CEO. TechCabal, the go-to online publication for African tech, markets itself under a strapline that reads ‘everyone is invited’.
When Bankole first became an entrepreneur—he founded TechCabal in April 2013—his biggest problem was finding really good people: the talented people who could help him grow his business. That is when he realised that a lot of skills were missing in Africa. He said,
“In more developed, advanced economies, people are able to acquire specialised skills, and it’s really the best people that can drive certain industries forward, that solve the world’s problems.”-Bankole Oluwafemi
The lack of problem-solving, critical thinking, or team-work in the education that he was given, those seem to have been the factors that drove him towards entrepreneurship, and starting something new, TechCabal from scratch alongside Seyi Taylor.
During the early days of TechCabal, there was an initial struggle to find the required talent needed to carry on the vision. This was beyond degree certifications to personal attributes such as a curious mind, perseverance, adaptiveness amongst others. To solve this problem, TechCabal decided to create a training program like banks and big African corporations do in order to retrain their talent and provide the necessary soft skills needed to thrive in the business.
Adapting this technique, TechCabal decided on the idea of Big Cabal, an Andela-like academy for media and those who want to work in the creative industry. The skills required to create content around technology are the same as those required to create content around entertainment, sport, fashion and every other creative industry; the only difference is the subject matter. The talents trained by Big Cabal are able to work in any media company, PR company and other organizations that require content. On the flip side, it was a win-win situation for TechCabal as Big Cabal positioned them as the definite technology resource for the African population, where investors, founders, entrepreneurs, local and foreign, can come for information.
No longer modelling TechCabal after TechCrunch, TechCabal is becoming a platform where they currently augment their editorial offering with a contextual data component; when you interact with a piece of content you get a better understanding of what it is you are consuming. Speaking on this, Bankole said,
“If we write about some startup that has just launched a logistics play in East Africa, we will help you to dig through their story stream, including things we’re written about them before, who the founders of that company are, who their investors are, who their competitors are, what investments they may have made themselves”.-Bankole
In addition to the team’s efforts around improving the daily TechCabal newsletter—one of the best in Africa—and the addition of guest curators from across Africa, they are also listing tech events in a new, interesting, hyper-local way. Right now, there is more targeted African tech information being shares and the audience continues to grow.
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