The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has kicked off activities for the third edition of its Talent Hunt Research through Hackathon.
NCC says the programme is part of expressing its Strategic Vision Plan 2023-2025, which encourages the development of new technologies and indigenous content through cutting-edge research.
According to the Commission, this initiative aims to stimulate sustainable economic growth and development in Nigeria.
The Commission has invited Tech Hubs and Innovation-Driven Enterprises (IDEs) in Nigeria to enrol their startups and solutions in the Talent Hunt Research.
The Hackathon, the Commission said, would focus on Blockchain-enabled Data Protection Solutions for Enhancing Regulatory Compliance, Assistive Technology Solutions for the Elderly and People with Disabilities and Technology Solutions for Renewable Energy in Rural Areas.
The NCC further explained that its Talent Hunt Research Through Hackathon leverages Emerging Digital Technologies to facilitate the development of home-grown innovative solutions and local content development in the telecommunications sector while fostering economic growth and social advancement in Nigeria.
The Commission said that the competition will enable the translation of novel ideas into developing hardware/software solutions that address industry and societal challenges.
A statement signed by Reuben Muoka, Director of Public Affairs of the NCC, said that the best three solutions, one from each of the three areas listed above, will receive grants of N10 million each to develop the solutions.
NCC said that it has set out eligibility criteria for those seeking to participate in the competition, which include that the Enterprise must provide a certificate of registration with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), the Enterprise must not have previously received support from the Commission, the project should have clear relevance to one of the three thematic areas above, it must provide a clear problem statement, proposed solution, and roadmap to deployment.
Other requirements, according to NCC, include a proof of concept (which may also include technical feasibility of the idea with diagram, algorithm, existing models, or case studies; the solution must be novel with the applicant making a declarative statement on ownership of the intellectual property, the solution including prototype development shall be concluded within six months of receipt of the Grant and must propose a detailed commercialization plan of the prototype.
It further informed that the Entry Submission format indicated that the proposal must include ideation, Minimum Viable Product (MVP) and solution, Current Sweat Equity Investment, Product-Market Fit status, Verifiable Go-to-Market status, Growth Feasibility Assurances, Maturity Model and Timeliness and existing time: Disaster Recovery, where applicable.
It directed that all applications be made online and follow the stipulated entry format. There is no financial cost to participating in the competition, while full control and ownership of the intellectual property of the developed solutions remain with the Commission.
Furthermore, the NCC explained that the entries must be made by a Tech Hub/Innovation-Driven Enterprise that must show evidence of the relationship with the Startup/solution being entered, a 4-page Executive summary of the project concept, a 3-5 minute video of the pilot project, names, age, contact details, passport photos and profile of all team members and the website (if available) as well as an E-mail address of the applicant.
It added that all interested and qualified enterprises should submit requested documents in a zip folder to https://ncc.gov.ng/talenthuntresearchhackathon2023 with the subject of the mail titled “Submission from <business name>” and the zipped file named after the business.
The Commission said it has run an advertorial on the Hackathon for three weeks and hereby requests those in the startup ecosystem to note that the application closes by Friday, 22nd September, 2023.