Etisalat Nigeria on Saturday announced it has launched a 35,000-dollar prize for innovation in mobile broadband product or service in Africa.
A statement by Mr Steven Evans, the company’s Chief Executive Officer, made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Saturday, said that the prize – ‘Etisalat Prize for Innovation’ – was aimed at encouraging and celebrating valuable innovation in the African market.
It said that said that the award would be one of the major attractions at the 15th Annual Africa Com Conference, scheduled to take place in Cape Town, South Africa, in November.
According to the statement, the award will be in two categories and both prizes would be for driving as well as facilitating mobile broadband use in Africa.
It said that the first prize of 25,000 dollars would be for the most innovative product or service launched in the last 12 months and the second prize of 10,000 dollars was for the most innovative idea.
”The importance of Africa as a growth market for mobile broadband is clearly evident, as the continent remains the fastest growing telecommunications market in the world.
”Over the past few years, Africa has witnessed a dramatic increase in mobile broadband connections, mainly due to the surge in mobile broadband connections in Nigeria.
”At Etisalat, we believe that the next big thing in telecommunications in Nigeria and Africa in general is broadband and we are pushing this agenda very seriously, being the first to launch a 3.75G network in Nigeria.”
According to the statement, the award is aimed at rewarding corporate organisations, small and growing businesses, as well as individuals developing advanced mobile broadband solutions and platforms in Africa.
”We have launched this award because we realise the importance of innovative broadband projects, products and services, which have improved the way we live and work.
”Innovation is core to our business strategy at Etisalat and we see ourselves as a young and innovative business, setting, the pace for others in the Nigerian telecommunications industry.
The statement said that entries for the award which opened on Thursday, Aug. 16, would close on Sept. 6, 2012, adding that entries should be submitted via the Etisalat website on www.etisalat.com/innovation.
It said that the entries must show demonstrable impact on broadband usage, impressive uptake from customers and would have made a visible commercial or social impact in the community.
Entries are open to African Mobile Network Operators (MNO) and Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNO) with innovative Broadband products or services using the GSM network family (2G GPRS & EDGE, 3G, HSPA, LTE), the statement said.
It is also open to handset and/or device manufacturers, App Developers and other Software service providers making use of mobile broadband capability, Radio and Core network Infrastructure suppliers enabling broadband products and content developers.