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Luqman Edu on Itana, Nigeria's First Digital Free Zone
Episode 6328th February 2024 • Charter Cities Podcast • Kurtis Lockhart
00:00:00 00:31:08

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What would it take to create the ideal jurisdiction for global tech companies to be able to grow and scale in Africa? Joining us today to unpack this question is Luqman Edu, co-founder and CEO of Itana, Nigeria’s first Digital Free Zone. Through their partnership with the Federal Government of Nigeria, Itana is creating an opportunity for global businesses to operate and provide services remotely, without being physically present in Nigeria. We use today’s conversation to delve into the ins and outs of building a Digital Free Zone, Itana’s ambition to become the Delaware of Africa, how this will help companies connect with untapped African talent, and what it will take to realize these goals. We discuss the key challenges startups and companies typically face when trying to do business in Nigeria or Africa, how Itana is solving these problems, the unique benefits they are offering to the first 100 companies to partner with them, and much more. You won’t want to miss out on this thought-provoking conversation with Luqmna Edu on Itana, the innovative work that they’re doing, and why success for Itana means success for Africa!

Key Points From This Episode:

  • Introducing today’s guest, Luqman Edu.
  • An overview of Itana, Nigeria’s first Digital Free Zone.
  • Common challenges for companies doing business in Africa.
  • Details on traditional Free Zones in Nigeria.
  • Policy and legal measures for making Itana an authentic Digital Free Zone.
  • A rundown of the incentives for working in Itana.
  • The requirements for being able to operate in Itana.
  • Itana’s physical campus and their goals for it.
  • Insight into Itana’s progress thus far and the companies operating within Itana.
  • How Itana is helping companies access Nigerian talent.
  • Other Digital Free Zones across the world and how they have influenced Itana.
  • Reflections on the future of Free Zones in Africa more generally.
  • How Luqman’s experience in the public and private sector has shaped his choices for Itana.
  • What they are doing to ensure Itana’s sustainability.
  • The increasingly important role of tech in the Nigerian economy.
  • How Itana wants to facilitate the success of tech companies across the continent.
  • The Itana 100: who they are and how you can join!

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

Luqman Edu on LinkedIn


Itana 100

Charter Cities Institute

Charter Cities Institute on Facebook

Charter Cities Institute on X