By Bukar Bolori & Gbenga Akingbule
A female entrepreneur from Northern Nigeria has invented a digital application (app) to boost small and medium businesses in the region.
The entrepreneur, Hafsah Jumare, a behavioral economist has floated a social app that can digitally link local startups in northern Nigeria with bigger markets across the globe.
This app according to Ms Jumare, who is the Chief Executive Officer of CoAmana, an enterprise that “offers a simple platform to deliver digital market opportunities to MSMEs, aimed at addressing the core issue of poverty that seems endemic in the 19 northern states of Nigeria.
She told journalists that her novel idea, though alien to the reluctant northern investors, has begun to catch the fancy of some state governments in the poor region.
She revealed that her digital app is already on the Google Play Store.
According to her, the digitally-driven Amana Market, a first of its kind digital marketing platform in the grossly deprived region, is helping the locals do business in a more organized way.
She said: “Amana Market, is a complete solution that links the MSMEs to information, capital and customers.
“Our product allows them to play in a bigger market through the web, mobile app, and SMS.”
Jumare said: “Despite the Northern investors skepticism and general lack of inspiration about digital marketing, Amana Market, has in its initial pilot phase connected 120 small business owners to buyers and the broader market.”
She added that: “We aim to reach 10,000 business owners in Kaduna State by June 2020.”
The young CEO explains that “CoAmana develops social technology to enable livelihoods development in Nigeria.
Founded in 2018, CoAmana is made up of a diverse team of scientists, value chain experts, software engineers, and data scientists. The company identifies sustainable business cases by focusing on the societal gaps that prevent people from charting their own pathways out of poverty and develops commercially-viable, market-enabling technologies to close those gaps.
Despite challenges like uninspiring attitude of northern investors couple with the patriarchal nature of the region, which gives women and young one’s little opportunity to excel, Ms. Jumare said already CoAmana is working with the Kaduna State Government, as the pioneer state for her initiative, “to expand opportunities for micro-businesses within the state.
“The platform has connected small businesses, from farmers to tailors, to this digital market designed specifically for them, giving them market opportunities that they would otherwise not have.”