Ahmad Shuaibu: Global Tech Africa’s Impact on African Tech

1. Interviewer: Hi Ahmad! Can you share a bit about yourself and shed light on the
mission of FutureMap Foundation, including its relationship with GTAConference in
the tech ecosystem?

Ahmad: Hey there! I’m Ahmad Shuaibu, Executive Trustee at FutureMap Foundation. With a background spanning 13 years in FinTech, I’ve transitioned from a Payment Solutions Developer to a successful Project Manager. Besides, I’m a Global Shaper and serve as a Board Trustee at Ahman Pategi University. FutureMap, a non-profit, is all about empowering African youth through tech, innovation, and mentorship. We’ve got the FutureMap Academy, Innovation Hub, and of course, the GTAConference, which unites tech stakeholders. It’s a holistic approach, and the conference is a pivotal part of our mission.

2. Interviewer: The GTA has a thriving tech ecosystem. How do you think organizations
like FutureMap Foundation can contribute to its growth and development?

Ahmad: Great question! The Global Tech Africa Conference is actually an initiative of FutureMap Foundation, implemented by Ascend Studios and other partners. Our primary goal is to unlock growth opportunities and build a robust tech ecosystem in Africa through collaboration and support.
FutureMap Foundation’s dedication to offering resources, mentorship, and support to tech talents, startups, and entrepreneurs empowers them to create solutions addressing Africa’s unique challenges.
This, in turn, translates to the growth and development of the tech ecosystem.

3. Interviewer: Can you share any specific success stories of tech talents or startups that
FutureMap Foundation has supported in the GTA?

Ahmad: While the Foundation is still in its infancy, we’ve made strides. We have a physical training institute in Hadejia, Jigawa State, and we’re collaborating with strategic partners for training programs. For instance, we worked with the National Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics on creating IoT devices. Also, a collaboration with the Natview Foundation for Technology Innovation focused on women-only training. It’s early days, but we’re seeing positive steps forward.

4. Interviewer: As an experienced IT professional, what advice would you give aspiring
tech entrepreneurs looking to establish their startups in the GTA?

Ahmad: Ah, startup advice – my favorite! For those diving into the GTA Conference, my advice is to seize every opportunity for learning and networking. Engage with mentors, attend relevant breakout sessions, and build a strong professional network. Establishing connections during the conference can lead to valuable partnerships and investments. But remember, the conference is just 3-4 days.

GTA conference
5. Interviewer: How do you see the collaboration between the government, educational
institutions, and tech companies in the GTA shaping the future of the tech industry?

Ahmad: Collaboration is the key! Government support and policies create an enabling environment, educational institutions provide necessary skills, and tech companies bring real-world expertise. The collaboration within the GTA Conference forms a robust foundation for building the future of the tech industry in Africa. It ensures a continuous influx of skilled professionals, fosters research and development, and contributes significantly to the growth and sustainability of the tech industry within the GTA Conference.

6. Interviewer: With the growing demand for tech talent in the GTA, how do you think
organizations like FutureMap Foundation can help bridge the skills gap and foster
talent development?

Ahmad: Bridging the skills gap is at the core of what FutureMap Foundation does. Our programs are tailored to address the talent deficit. We believe Africa holds the key to addressing the world’s tech talent deficit with our outstanding youth population. So, our initiatives focus on nurturing and supporting tech talents, startups, and entrepreneurs to unlock growth opportunities and build a thriving tech ecosystem. It’s not just us; the entire ecosystem needs every player to contribute its quota.

7. Interviewer: The GTA is known for its diverse and inclusive community. How can the
tech industry ensure equal opportunities and representation for underrepresented
groups in the region?

Ahmad: Ensuring equal opportunities and representation requires active effort. The tech industry needs to actively promote diversity and inclusion through targeted outreach programs, scholarships, and mentorship initiatives for underrepresented groups. Implementing inclusive hiring practices and creating supportive work environments are crucial. Promoting STEM education among underprivileged communities and encouraging girls and women to pursue tech related fields can significantly enhance representation and diversity within the industry.

8. Interviewer: If you could organize a tech-themed event in the GTA, what would it be
and why?

Ahmad: Hm, I’d go for a Technology Innovation Expo in the GTA. Picture this – showcasing the
latest technological advancements, innovations, and startups offering solutions to our problems. It’s a platform for tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs, investors, and the general public to interact, learn, and collaborate. The expo could pave the way for the growth we want to unlock within the tech ecosystem.
It’s about showcasing what’s possible and inspiring collaboration on a grand scale.

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