Connecting Africa is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 3099067.

Digital Inclusion

Connecting Africa Podcast: Ep. 8 – Edtech for the future of work

Article Image
This week the podcast is all about education tech (edtech) and particularly technology-skills training for Africans.

We are joined by Eyitayo Ogunmola, CEO of Utiva, a startup that provides digital courses to prepare young people for the future of work.

Ogunmola shared his experience as a disillusioned graduate coming into a job market that he did not have the right skills for, and seeing the opportunity that tech could offer him and other young Africans.

Utiva started in 2018 and combines remote learning models with instructor-led approaches to help people acquire the skills they need to make a transition into new tech roles.

We heard about how Utiva evolved from in-person training to a digital offering and how the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated its growth online.

Nigerian-born Ogunmola is extremely passionate about education but also explained some key challenges faced by edtech startups – often overlooked by investors who see them as part of the non-profit or social enterprise space.

"You need to get Africans to learn the skills that will prepare the continent for the future of work," he said. "It's more than a business, it's a social mission."

The demand for digital skills training in Africa is certainly on the rise and the International Finance Corporation believes that 230 million jobs across the continent will require some level of digital skills by 2030.

"The market is extremely big, we need to conduct 650 million trainings as a continent between now and 2030 to close the current [skills] gap," Ogunmola said.

He believes that the way forward for is through government partnerships and collaborations with universities.

That led to a discussion about innovative ways of financing digital skills training and flexible payment options to make upskilling more affordable to Africa's rising middle class.

Utiva has a big focus on inclusion with 80% female staff and a number of employees with disabilities and he spoke about how diversity in the business has driven growth for the company.

Growth in edtech has seen competition grow as well, but Ogunmola sees that as a good thing which is making the market more attractive to investors. He also shared lessons learned from fintech peers that have helped edtech companies succeed.

Finally, he shared the most popular courses on the platform and trends he sees for future growth.

Eyitayo Ogunmola, CEO of Utiva. (Source: Utiva)
Eyitayo Ogunmola, CEO of Utiva. (Source: Utiva)

This is the penultimate episode of the series and next week hosts Paula Gilbert, Tobi Lafinhan and Tien Fu will talk about Africa's digital divide.

You can find the podcast on Apple Podcasts; Spotify; Google Podcasts or find other podcast platform options on our main page on Anchor.

You can also find the hosts online here:

Paula Gilbert (@paulajgilbert)

Tobi Lafinhan (@TobiLafinhan)

Tien Fu (@tienchifu)

Related posts:

— Paula Gilbert, Editor, Connecting Africa

Innovation hub

Story

Super-app Gozem raises $5M for expansion plans

Gozem, the Francophone African super-app, has raised $5 million in a Series A round to help fund its expansion plans.

Story

African startups raise almost $4B in 2021

Africa's startup ecosystem raised almost $4 billion in 2021 according to startups deals database Africa: The Big Deal – with Nigeria, South Africa, Egypt and Kenya taking the lion's share.

More Innovation hub

Latest video

More videos

Guest Perspectives

Story

Omdia View: October 2021

By Omdia Analysts

Across the Middle East and Africa, regulators are beginning to facilitate spectrum allocation to operators in the region for the deployment of new and innovative technology.

Story

Research Bites: Why Africans stop using mobile apps

By Chinedu Wilfred Okonkwo, Magda Huisman and Estelle Taylor

This article – in collaboration with the African Journal of Science, Technology, Innovation and Development – explores the reasons behind why Africans stop using certain mobile apps.

More Guest Perspectives

Partner perspectives

All Partner Perspectives

AfricaCom perspectives

Story

Digital inclusion as a catalyst for economic empowerment: Mastercard's Imelda Ngunzu

Mastercard's Imelda Ngunzu talks to Connecting Africa about how digital payment solutions and mobile money are transforming the lives of small business owners, women and marginalized groups in East Africa.

Story

Accelerating women in STEM: In conversation with GirlCode's Tinyiko Simbine

GirlCode co-founder and CFO Tinyiko Simbine talks about why it's important to help girls and young women excel in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.

Story

How Poa Internet is unlocking meaningful connectivity in East Africa

Poa Internet's CEO Andy Halsall shares his views on what it takes to develop last-mile connectivity and get Africans online in a meaningful way.

More AfricaCom perspectives

Flash poll

All polls

Archived webinars

Meeting SME’s where they are - Building inclusive ecosystems for Africa’s small business owners

Micro and small businesses have been, and still are, the spine and lifeblood of the African economy, making up 90% of businesses on the continent.

Many of these businesses have still been operating in traditional ways and serving non-digital customers. With Covid-19 expediting the digital transformation process, businesses - big and small - have been forced to adapt to operate successfully in a more digital-first environment.

To ensure that the digitalization of Africa’s market doesn’t leave micro and small businesses behind, digital solutions must be inclusive and create business-ready environments. But how can we ensure that African SMEs become digitally enabled?

In this webinar we will share from our own experience on how to create such an environment, and the actions we took in vcita to get there, including:

  • Closing the digital literacy gap through tech inclusion 
  • Making a positive impact on local communities
  • Building the foundations for digital inclusion and small business growth in a technology-accelerated world
  • Building the foundations for digital inclusion and small business growth in a technology-accelerated world

Register Here >>

More Webinars

Sponsored video

More videos

Like us on Facebook

Newsletter Sign Up


Sign Up