John Nwachukwu,Solutions Program Director at Zoracom speaks with eTimes News crew on the challenges of ICT Start ups in Nigeria and why Banks will treat the ICT start-ups with levity.
As an ICT firm what are you key strength areas ?
Our major key strength areas are Managed services Provider, Cloud applications.Our web application solution has (premise/cloud) spans several sectors such as Medical (ZoraHMS), Educational (ZoraSMS), Hospitality (ZoraHUT, RestFine) and Business management (ZoraVENT).Our turnkey solutions deliver voice, data, video, Internet, unified IT & system management and other applications to diverse business fields and industry sectors including education, healthcare, utilities, aviation, oil & gas and government agencies. Zoracom is NCC licensed to repair & maintain telecommunications facilities and to install cellular terminal equipment.
You are into communication infrastructure can you tell us the projects you have embarked on?
As a telecommunication company we have embarked on several successful projects as follows; Design and installation of LAN & voice points for GMT Nigeria limited: We designed and installed over 152 LAN & Voice point for system interconnection for a leading logistics company in Nigeria.MTN Nigeria/HIS RBS Retrofit Alarming System Installation.
· The Egina FPSO living quarters (Telecom detailed engineering design) with over 500 key deliverables that were completed ahead of schedule, on budget and to quality and safety requirements.
As a startup in Nigeria what are the challenges that you face doing business in Nigeria?
It is unfortunate. Most banks won’t support us. It is very bad that they don’t even believe in us or startups that are into ICT. These people will tell you that you should go write a business proposal. How can a man that is a core technical start writing business proposal. Imagine if you are a guy that wants to start up a business and you consult people to write a business proposal, imagine the charges, these banks keeps demanding for business proposal. If these organizations can provide startups an avenue to have these things done, it would be a nice idea. Now another thing is that these banks will want to see a turnover.
How can a startup declare turnover? These are few hurdles that we encountered. I think that the bank don’t want put their money where they are not sure especially in ICT start up. They are not risk takers. Let me give you a personal experience, a company in Germany believed us when they saw the way that we have been trying to push their products in Nigeria, do you know what they did? They made us master reseller in Africa this is to show you the level of confidence that they have in us. But at home, the reverse is the case.
Nigeria is more about mobile internet, what is your take on this and how can are you keying into this eco space
During the past few decades Nigeria has embraced mobile internet and other online activities and as an ICT firm we are right positioned with our online cloud applications mentioned earlier to support businesses in several sectors including medical, educational, hospitality and business management.
What is the future projection of Zoracom
The future projection is to be the key leader in managed cloud services in Nigeria and Africa as a continent.
What actually prompted you to establish Zoracom as an ICT firm?
The reason for establishing Zoracom is quite straight forward; My passion for information technology and business process automation.
Do you feel that the government and Banks are doing enough to support indigenous ICT firms?
I will say the government is trying in their own way but the banks are doing little or nothing to support indigenous ICT firms. When you have ideas and innovations to offer and financial impediment stops you. You can’t even go to bank because interest rates are high.
What is the advice you have for young ones that want to establish their own ICT firms?
I will start by saying ICT is very lucrative and we have seen the likes of Bill Gate, Mark Zukerberg, Steve Jobs to mention but a few succeed in this this sector.
My advice to the young ones that want to venture into ICT is that they should be consistent and patient because we see so many young ones today into ICT tomorrow they are in into entertainment. They should also undergo required training and certifications because the challenges are enormous, especially in this part of the world.
Tell us, why people must look for Zoraom for their ICT projects?
Zoracom has competent and certify engineers and developers to handle their projects and our core value to do every task the right way every time with emphasis on quality and efficiency. We deliver and exceeds our customer’s expectations in our projects.