TEDxLagos had its first virtual gathering on Monday, July 13, 2020.

The event themed Upside held on Hopin, an online events platform.

"Upside presents a world of perspective, opportunity and leverage. Challenges are inevitable but it is up to us as a community to look out for the upside in situations. And where there is none, as a community, we will create the UPSIDE", says a statement from the organisers.

Over 300 people attended from different parts of the world. Despite the movement restrictions in the state, the team led by Mercy Akamo forged on. Of the speakers of the day was tech executive and investor, Chika Nwobi.

Mr Nwobi is a serial entrepreneur in every sense of the word. He co-founded startups like 440.NG, Cheki.com.ng, L5Lab and  Decagon. He has also led consulting engagements for Ford Foundation and International Finance Corporation. Currently, he works as CEO, Decagon while sitting on the board of Unilever. Decagon is an innovative training institute for software engineers.

He has a combined experience of over 20 years working and investing in tech and startups. And he brought that experience to bear in his talk titled, "An economy rescued by startups".

Nigeria is an economy rescued by startups, says Nwobi

The talk opens with the founding story of a "startup", NCNC founded in 1944 by two journalists. Their mission was to tackle colonial rule and lead Nigeria to independence. Yet, they were only able to achieve part-success, before they ceased operation.

Fifty years later, a group of retired generals, lawyers and politicians founded NADECO. Their mission which was to lead Nigeria to democratic rule and create economic prosperity. But only the former part of that mission has been achieved.
Chika says that the 2000s presents Nigeria a third movement which would be led by the tech sector. He concludes his talk by offering two ideas to make this third movement deliver in full.

You can watch his full presentation on the TEDx Talks YouTube channel.

Chika Nwobi speaking at TEDx Lagos 2020