The Lagos State Government has announced the frontrunners that will participate in the finals of the Lagos Smart Metre Hackathon design event slated for 16th-18th September, 2020.
Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu will at the Grand Finale at the Eko Innovative Centre, announce the overall winner from each competing entries in hardware and software categories.
Five contenders each emerged from both categories of the competition, and the two winners will share the prize money of seven million naira.
Finalists were shortlisted after a transparent, rigorous and competitive process.
The Hackathon attracted 274 registrations or entries, 127 of which bid in hardware category, while 147 competed in software group.
DigitalTimesNG understands that only 65 hardware and software prototypes were submitted by applicants.
The shortlisted five finalists from hardware category are: Cosmo Automation, Smart Energy, Techwizard, Power Bit Cruchers and Gadozz Electricals.
The five software finalists are: Vectorians, Zeena Platform, Magnitronics, Chosen Soft Tech and Gideon.
DigitalTimesNG further understands that this Initiative of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources is aimed at providing affordable electricity metres to the populace by facilitating the design and production of metres that will accelerate efforts towards achieving improvement in energy distribution, monitoring and prevention of revenue leakage.
It is estimated that over 60% of Lagosians and Nigerians are unmetred due to unavailability and the high cost of metre acquisition.
The Lagos State Government is, therefore, leveraging bright local talents to design and produce affordable smart electricity metres.
Mrs Doja Ekeruche, Advisory Board Member, Eko Innovation Centre, curators of the Hackathon, noted that 19 judges with expertise in the power and tech ecosystem participated in the shortlisting process that produced the finalists.
“We asked companies in the Energy and Tech ecosystem to nominate representatives to serve on the selection panel, tasked with shortlisting the top five finalists from both hardware and software tracks to proceed to the final Hackathon events.
“At the end of the shortlisting phase, a session was held with the judges to discuss the reviewing process, and an analytics team ranked the submissions by all judges to arrive at the top finalists,” She explained.
Recall that during the launch of the programme on July 30th, 2020, the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu noted that the Smart Metre Hackathon Initiative marked a significant milestone in the implementation of the State Government’s plan towards improving access to electricity as it aligned with the Sustainable Development Goal 7 of the United Nations, targeted at achieving universal access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy for all by 2030.
While stating his resolve to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Lagos, Sanwo-Olu said at the virtual event then that the initiative “fits well within the six pillars of the development agenda of his administration (T.H.E.M.E.S), which includes driving technology-driven innovations to transform Lagos into a 21st century digital economy and Smart City.
“This Lagos Smart Metre Programme is an important way for the Lagos Government to demonstrate its commitment to improving electricity access and reliability for Lagosians.
“We believe that adequate metering of Lagosians and in turn Nigerians, would increase willingness to pay for electricity, improve productivity and, more importantly, continue to improve the living conditions of our people.”
Recall also, that at the ceremony held virtually in July, the Minister of State, Federal Ministry of Power, Goddy Jedy-Agba. in his keynote address, said that the local design and production of affordable metres will help transform the power sector and the economy at large.
He urged all stakeholders to support the initiative, stressing that getting access to electricity right in Lagos “is critical for access to electricity in the entire country, considering the state’s population and economic landscape.”
The convener of the Lagos Smart Meter Hackathon and the State’s Honourable Commissioner for Energy and Mineral Resources, Mr. Olalere Odusote said that the initiative was expected to provide access to affordable smart metres for Lagosians to improve electricity supply, monitoring, and trust between electricity providers and end users while preventing revenue leakage, as programme.
“The initiative is expected to drive innovation and creativity while generating new interest in young people for the sector.
“Over the years, despite significant investments and resolutions along the electricity value chain, there remains a huge metering gap of over 60% of electricity consumers in Lagos and Nigeria.
“This metering gap is what we are seeking to bridge through the Lagos Smart Meter Hackathon.
“In line with the objectives of the Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu administration to make Lagos a 21st century economy, we have identified the need to intervene and support the facilitation of effective metering across the state, to ensure the provision of reliable electricity for Lagosians and Nigerians in the long-term,” the Commissioner said.
The Lagos Smart Metre Hackathon 2020 is convened by the Lagos State Ministry of Energy & Mineral Resources, curated by Eko Innovation Centre, and sponsored by Access Bank Plc, Egbin Power, and Ikeja Electric Distribution Company.
Other sponsors include Mojec International, Eko Electric Distribution Company, MOMAS Electricity Meters Manufacturing Company, ElSewedy Electric, Royal Power & Energy, Venture Garden Group, InfraCredit, and Axxela Limited.
They were supported by the Lagos State Office of Innovation and Technology, Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF), the Nigerian Electricity Management Services Agency (NEMSA), Africa Fintech Foundry (AFF), Oracle, IBM, General Electric, Business Day and Accelerate TV.