In Silicon Valley, Pando.com founder and editor-in-chief Sarah Lacy Is many things. Tech media rockstar. Venture capital afficionado. Lean in living proof.

In Nigeria she is a god.

Among the techies in the local startup ecosystem at least, where she has long attained cult icon status from her days writing ace opinion and reportage for TechCrunch, way before leaving to found Pando which has become one of the Valley’s most influential voices. When they learnt that she would be visiting Nigeria in 2011, the community was agog and rolled out all the carpets they could find at short notice.

In the first instance, that visit was made possible because Sarah was invited to speak at The Platform, an event powered by Covenant Christian Center but unique in that it consistently convenes a formidable panel of personalities from all over the world to inspire young Nigerians in a way that doesn’t have any apparent religious underpinnings.

theplatform8

But then as soon as techies in Nigeria got wind of her Sarah’s impending trip to +234 on The Platform’s dime, the sharp ones got to emailing. As I have learnt, they managed to get her to come into the country one week earlier than she intended, so she could spend more time touring the ecosystem.

And tour it, she did. They took her everywhere. Alaba, Computer Village, a demo day for local startups organised by TechCircle. Not to overstate how profound the impact of one person’s coverage might have been, but you have to agree that some people and startups, most notably Jason Njoku’s iROKOtv, are still riding the wave of international recognition that was the result of Sarah’s brief sojourn through the Nigerian technology ecosystem, almost three years ago.

Sarah Lacy and Sim Shagaya at tech open day

Reliable sources inform TechCabal that Sarah Lacy is coming to Nigeria once again. And once again, at the behest of The Platform which is convening this particular edition around technology.

Other tech hard-hitters expected to speak at “The Platform Tech” are the Honourable minister of Communications and Technology, Mrs Omobola Johnson, Founder and CEO of Konga.com, Sim Shagaya and Co-Creation Hub co-founder, Bosun Tijani. As excited as I am to hear them speak, I will not pretend that I am not most intrigued by what Sarah’s second coming might bring.

The Platform Tech, yet to be officially announced is billed to take place on Saturday, the 12th of April, 2014. More information as it comes. Other global technology personalities previously hosted by The Platform include Jared Cohen (twice), Anand Giridharadas, Sam Graham-Felson and more.

Image Credits: Geoffrey Ellis

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18th March 2014

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