Win $25,000 via Google’s Africa Connected Platform

Google is calling on entrepreneurs, creators, innovators and web-lovers in Nigeria and across Africa to share their stories of how the web has positively transformed their lives via the Africa Connected platform. Whether you’re a photographer, an entrepreneur, a fashion designer or a community activist, if the internet and Google tools have played an important role in your success, Google wants to hear from you.

Africa ConnectedIn the next five years, 7 out of the world’s 10 fastest growing economies are predicted to be in Africa. Industry analysts say the Internet would play a critical role in this regard. Google’s new initiative, ‘Africa Connected: Success stories powered by the web’, aims to gather the largest collection of inspiring stories about ventures established online by Africans, in Africa. Five successful entrants will win $25,000 each, and will also have the opportunity to work with a Google sponsor over a six-month period.

Google wants to hear from young, spirited entrepreneurial web adopters in Nigeria and other countries in sub-Saharan Africa who have a healthy disregard for the impossible and who are using the web and technology to do cool and extraordinary things to rise above their circumstances, change their world, and achieve success.

“We want to showcase the amazing achievements happening in the new Africa”, says Affiong Osuchukwu, Google lead for the Africa Connected Initiative. Aspiring filmmaker, cinematographer and editor Amuwa Oluseyi Asurf is one such example.

This Nigerian videographer has gone from spending nights in internet cafes, so that he could watch YouTube to teach himself how to edit films, to running a successful film and video production company in Lagos, where he employs 10 people.His firm, Asurf Films, is today courted by Nigerian celebrities such as Basket Mouth, Iyanya, Wizkid, Psquare and Bovi, to film their music/entertainment videos locally and globally.

“My journey started with a passion to become a filmmaker. Though, I got admission to some good universities, I couldn’t afford to go. Luckily, I was introduced to the internet and to YouTube. I discovered I could learn everything I needed to know online. It feels great to have some of the top celebrities in Nigeria inviting me to their projects.

This inspires me to want to become even better. I am still on the journey to becoming one of the top names in African filmmaking, and I know the internet will still continue to play an important role.”Categories for entries include Education; Entertainment/Arts/Sports; Technology; Community and NGOs; and Small Businesses.

20 semi-finalists will be selected from initial entries to take part in an interview and to produce a short promotional video. A judging panel made up of Googlers and external judges will then determine the 10 finalists.

The 5 winners, in whose lives the web and Google have played a pivotal role, will then be selected by the online voting public. Submissions are open from August 27, 2013 to October 11, 2013.

To get started, go to the Africa Connected platform and start submitting your success story. Make sure you read through the contents available on the platform so you can position yourself to really win.