AfDB Update: The Investment in Digital and Creative Enterprise (i-DICE) project of the African Development Bank (AfDB) has agreed to provide $618 million to Nigeria.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Marrakesh, Morocco, was informed on Sunday by Mr. Lamin Barrow, the AfDB’s Country Director-General for Nigeria, that the Nigerian government is currently in the process of appointing a fund manager for the project.
On March 14, Nigeria’s iDICE program unveiled a 618 million dollar technology fund for millennial investors.
The fund was established by former Vice President Yemi Osinbajo to help investors in Nigeria’s creative and technology industries who are having trouble raising capital.
The AfDB will contribute $170 million, the Agence Francaise de Developpement will contribute $116 million, and the Islamic Development Bank will spend $70 million.
Barrow claimed that Nigeria’s political transition was the reason behind the project’s execution delay.
“The change in government caught us off guard, and you have to give the new administration time to get established.
“The steering committee convened and was briefed. The vice-president presided over the group, which included representatives from the Ministries of Finance, Trade and Investments, Communication, Science and Technology, Information, and Culture.
“The team has put together the required procurement work, and we are now at the payout step.
He said, “This has to do with the Express of Interest for firms that want to handle the DICE funds and the selection of the transaction adviser..“
Cooperation with the Government of France
The initiative also received permission from the French government, which committed millions of dollars in funding.
Remember that during her visit to Nigeria last week, French Minister Catherine Colonnade vowed to support the initiative, pointing out that it had the potential to establish 65,000 new businesses in the nation.
Barrow, the African Development Bank’s Country Director-General for Nigeria, concurred with the minister, stating that the bank and the French government are working together to invest in the project.
“During the minister’s visit to Nigeria last week, the Islamic Development Bank and the French Development Agency inked the co-financing agreement for DICE. At this point, every procedure is practically finished.
The fact that the fund and the hiring procedures for fund management are about to take place is what matters.
According to Barrow, “the fund manager will be in charge of it independently and will also make payments to it by helping startups.”