4 promising industries for Nigerian tech startups in 2016

by | Jan 8, 2016

2015 was a great year for Nigerian tech. It saw the coming to age of a number of tech startups, some of which set records in funding and acquisition, that made us hopeful for 2016.

As crude oil revenues continue to dwindle, government is looking to diversify Nigeria’s revenue base into other areas of the economy. With a projected non-oil revenue of 1.45tn in 2016, Nigeria is poised for potential economic growth. There will be increasing opportunities for startups to take advantage.

Beyond the already relatively saturated eCommerce space, here are 4 other industries we think budding and experienced techprenuers alike should watch out for in 2016.



This is one area that holds huge promise for 2016. For one, electronics payments, even as a trillion-naira industry, is plagued by barely passable implementation. With new entrants like PayStack coming into the space, there is plenty of room for improvement.

FinTech is however not limited to e-payments. Other areas like insurance, financial advisory, personal finance management, lending and social trading among others, are largely unexplored. And with the advent of BVN — which can provide the backbone for an authorization framework that will be to financial services what Oauth is to internet services — the possibilities are near endless.


As part of plans to diversify the economy, President Buhari’s administration has promised to place better focus on agriculture. This is an  area where startups should begin to look to solve problems using tech. The precision agriculture systems and services industry is expected to grow globally to $2 billion in 2019. As local farmers are becoming increasingly aware of precision farming techniques, intending agritech startups can expect and influx of useful data to employ in providing awesome solutions. 


Due to it’s bureaucratic nature, Healthcare is not one of the easiest industries to innovate. But this hasn’t stopped techpreneurs from trying to innovate. Only that the available solutions so far have been mostly limited to app-based services like Kangpe, the medical advise app. Indeed some interesting solutions have been coming up. I remember watching someone pitch at an Intel developer event, a contraption that let’s people test for malaria with the aid of an app. There is still plenty of room for innovation. 


Less than 45 per cent of those who sat for the 2015 West African Senior School Certificate Exams (WASSCE) passed with credit grade and above. By all indications, this trend is likley to continue in 2016. In response, startups like PrepClass and Pass.ng have sprung up. But none of these are full tech solutions by any margin.


The biggest winners in 2016 might well be startups providing wholesome solutions that employ technologies like virtual an augmented reality to drastically improve learning experience. 

Are there any other industries you believe hold great promise for tech startups in 2016. We’d like to hear your thoughts.

Photo Credit: Ömer Ünlü / zouzouwizman via Compfight cc

Múyìwá Mátùlúkò
Múyìwá Mátùlúkò

Chief Servant. I bully myself because I make me do what I put my mind to.

On January 22, 2022, be part of the largest gathering of innovators, startup founders, thinkers, programmers, policymakers, and investors in West Africa. Register free.


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