By Cyriacus Nnaji
Andre Iguodala, an American Basketball Player and a member of Jumia Board has disclosed his intention to support Nigerian Startups especially those who are active on the Tech space.
Iguodala who addressed a press conference in company of Sacha & Jeremy (Jumia co-Founders), and the Chief Executive Officer, Jumia Nigeria, Juliet Anammah, at the company’s office in Yaba, Lagos on Wednesday, also revealed that in the offing is an introduction of an NBA African team next year.
He said the NBA Africa which is hoped will bring excitement to the people, will be made up of 12 teams.
He admitted that much of the difficulties encountered by startups in Nigeria revolve around funding and growth opportunities and assured that solutions to such problems would be found.
On the benefit of his partnership with Jumia, Iguodala who joined Jumia as an ambassador and board member, stated that such collaboration is expected to promote the company’s business development and technology in the United States of America.
Andre said “Part of my being in the board is to bring that awareness to the US investors to African company, the actual reason is the growth that is here.”
Andre who praised Jumia Nigeria under Anammah for the amazing work it is doing, stated that he would also be helping athletes to invest in startups and business of their choice in preparation for their retirement.
On what the partnership will do for Nigeria he said that the collaboration was designed for finding talents, developing the talents, creating awareness to US investors, so as to understand how ecommerce works in developing countries.
Juliet Anammah earlier said Andre’s coming was basically to talk to Nigerian youths about his life’s experiences.
“His coming is an opportunity to engage with you, to talk about his experiences, his life and what he is doing to encourage young Nigerians and young entrepreneurs who are active in the tech space.” Anammah disclosed
Speaking about the visit Andre said: “Because of my Nigerian heritage, Jumia’s use of technology to deliver innovative online services to consumers and improve the quality of everyday life in Africa is very important to me. I’m thrilled to be a part of this unique enterprise that is shaping the future of digital Africa.”
His affirmation was also rechoed by Jumia co-founder Sacha Poignonne who said: “Having Andre join our board sends the world the message that Africa has successful companies and great entrepreneurs, and that athletes can play a key role in contributing to their success.”