The award was instituted to keep alive the legacy of Engineer Simon Agu, the founding President of ISPON, to the software profession and industry in collaboration with the Agu family. Officially known as the Simon Agu Prize for Software Excellence, in recognition of the Best Software Entrepreneur of the year, the award is handed out yearly at the Nigeria Information Technology Merit Awards NITMA.
Engineer Simon Agu was a consumate software entrepreneur, he was the founder and chairman of Computer Industry Systems Associates (Nigeria) Limited which metamorphosed to Neptune Software, a foremost international software company growing from 3 to 100 professional staff. He contributed greatly to the recognition of the Nigerian software industry locally and internationally.
Three startups will be shortlisted from the pool of nominees
One startup will be adjudged winner from the finalists
Winner gets a cheque of two hundred and fifty thousand naira
The award will be based on the performance of the company in one calendar year; year in review for consideration of the award is September 2020 – September 2021. To select the winner of the award this year, the following procedure will be followed:
Nomination for eligible startups will be open on the website for one week. Anyone can nominate a startup of their choice but the startup must fulfil the criteria set.
At the expiration of the nomination period, the committee will commence vetting of nominated startups to verify that they meet the criteria set.
The top three startups from the vetting procedure will be shortlisted for the final stage and will be requested to submit their pitch deck highlighting the set criteria.
Online voting for the winner from the shortlisted startups will commence. Voters are eligible to only one vote; multiple votes will be nulled.
The winner will be adjudged by the committee from the total number of votes garnered as well as points earned from the pitch deck.
Announcement of the winner and presentation of the prize will be made at the Nigeria Information Technology Merit Awards 2021.
For startups to qualify for the Simon Agu Prize for Software Excellence, in recognition of the Best Software Entrepreneur of the year, the following criteria must be met:
What is the general idea behind the startup, how does it make the startup rank better than other solutions
How innovative is the idea, how much of a disruption has it caused and what new trend has it led to
How much impact does the product startup have on the users, businesses and the industry (where applicable)
How good is your business model, how do you identify customer problems and provide solutions to them
How has the company thrived financially, how much has the company raised, what is the turnover
Only startups in seed funding stage and haven't received any foreign funding are eligible