Why Tech Startups In Lagos Will Want To Move To Yaba Soon

The CcHub has been talking about the I-HQ project since last year. One of the facets of that initiative involves then deployment of high speed Internet fibre along Herbert Macaulay Way. With the help of MainOne cable as technical partner and the cooperation of the Lagos State government, who graciously waived right of way impediments to the rollout, the area is about to become a literal information super highway.

mainone lasimra i-hq

They have begun to do it. Over the past couple weeks, work men have been digging up the side of the road around Sabo and gradually working their way up along Herbert Macaulay Way. I didn’t grasp the significance until I saw them digging in front of the Hub, and immediately realised their purpose.

There are definitely much deeper, broader socioeconomic consequences that will be occasioned by the CcHub’s Broadband HQ project. But at the very least, by the time this is done, real estate prices will go through the roof. If you have a technology business in Lagos whose business depends on the Internet, as in you spend thousands of dollars on Internet access, then you should start looking for an office on Herbert Macaulay Way, pronto.

26 Comments

  • pystar says:

    In the knowledge economy, do we really need to be in a physical office to get work done? There are a lot of upsides to working remotely. Awesome initiative from mainone though.

    • upnepa says:

      You can’t work remotely if your Internet isn’t fast can you?

      • pystar says:

        If you use swift, I believe that point doesn’t hold. Not advertising for them though.

        • Erm… Swift ain’t that good everywhere. At least not where I live. Plus, there’s a lot of advantages to having a central location where most startups operate from, a la Silicon Valley

          • pystar says:

            I think I would recommend remote, the latest book from 37signals. Lagos is anti commute. The traffic jam alone is enough to make you loose your creative chops. It makes sense and is more cost effective to work remotely.

          • Dee says:

            economies of scale blah blah blah

        • Swift doesn’t work well in Gbagada where I live plus I am having a very bad experience with their data distribution.

          • pystar says:

            If you had mainone type internet speed in your house, would you work remotely or waste 5 hours commuting from agbara to yaba axis everyday? Lets not focus on swift or no swift but rather on the upsides of working remotely. If I had a choice I know what I would choose. I guess everyone needs to read “remote” by 37signals to really get my drift.

          • upnepa says:

            “If”. And the people that work for 37Signals aren’t in countries with ridiculous data prices due to diesel generators

          • Hassan Jnr II says:

            gbagada ?? we should meet ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Onyeka A. says:

    “do we really need to be in a physical office to get work done?”

    My thoughts exactly. I mean, I like this idea but ugh, Yaba is cramped as hell (seriously, it drives me crazy, you can’t even find decent parking anywhere half the time).

  • upnepa says:

    If the Internet in Yaba will be faster than half of Lagos, it’s a good enough reason to move tbh

  • ultradrift says:

    When your internet is crawling, even with your Swift, you go move. And the Swift we all are praising, let’s see what happens when everyone jumps on it.

    • adeleke says:

      Funny , I dumped swift for good old visafone. their network (swift) is always under planned maintenance.

  • Yaba is a money drainer, barely 3 days of my tech startup moving to Yaba, and White house, Ozone and more have taken over my bank account.

    Great initiative from Mainone and CC hub

  • Oluwasegun says:

    We might just have to work with what we have now. We don’t have many of this around. However, I hope for more and more of this.

    Kudossss to MainOne and CcHub.

  • codename-tayo says:

    Remotely blah …. blahhh…… blahhhhh
    Working at the cchub with blazing internet speed not only has it save lots of money for my start-up but also saved lots of ‘Time to Market’ time :).
    If you are running a business and not an app then I believe you need an office but that depends on the flexibility of your team too.

  • olusegun gbelee says:

    I saw ads in the paper today for IPNX’s fibre to the home. Available in certain places on the island. Prices are reasonable, so maybe this wont be a novelty to just yaba in a few months/years when other fibre players enter the game. From my personal experience, the 2/3Mb I get with swift and spectranet’s LTE is ok for 80% of a startup’s internet needs.

    • pystar says:

      Swift for now is more than enough. I get 22mbps down and 6mbps up. What could any Nigerian dev be working on that that won’t be sufficient? My YouTube videos are buffer free. Remote has my vote anyday anytime.

  • ozo says:

    First, the ability to work remotely or practice the “Teachings” in “Remote” are really dependent on the nature of your business. So, let’s get the first assumption out of the way – Remote working is not for all businesses/startups.

    That said, let’s assume the center-point of this discussion is on tech-type businesses that do not need much of the “office” to get the job done. There are still fundamental things to consider asides the technological infrastructure, such as the size of the company, and importantly the culture of the company (or startup if you prefer to call it that) and work ethics of members of staff.

    Now, having said that, assuming we are talking specifically about Internet-type businesses that do not necessarily require the office space, then one thing is certain. WITHOUT a decent Internet connection there is no remote working. If you don’t have a decent connection (be it a Swift connection on the Island where they have the “best” [disclaimer – unverified] connectivity, and not at the outskirts of Ogun state) then the concept of remote working is far-fetched.

    I work with a solid team at a decently-sized tech company and have been working remotely for a while; and we have attained great successes as a result of being able to work remotely. Pinpointing two key things that have made us succeed would be:

    1. Blazing fast Internet connection (Because asides having access to Google and Stack Overflow, we need the blazing fast Internet to be able to connect remotely to our servers, and the servers of our clients. We need the Internet to be able to do VOIP and receive our office calls on our laptops. We need the blazing fast Internet to be able to share screens and take control of computers used by any team mate.

    2. The culture. Working remotely means there must be “TRUST”. How do you trust that the bright programmer you just employed is actually working on this items on JIRA and not playing the PS4? How do you know he is not watching the week’s latest of the X-Factor? If there is no way to encourage the culture of being self-driven and responsible then you can get all the Broadband you want, but it might at the end of the day be used for downloading cool vids, or playing games.

    Just my 2Cents.

  • Tola says:

    IMHO, If there is really a need for high-speed internet in Yaba and CcHub can’t fund or raise funds for a startup to meet such a local need, then where is the sense of entrepreneurship or should I say capitalism? Partnering with Lagos State and Main One will never provide the flexibilities needed to foster innovation. I am no expert, but this is already evident in the current approach – why are you laying plain old-school expensive fibre that Alaba boys can easily dig up when there are cheaper 10G backhaul radios that can get you up and running in days?? Hmmm…

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