Punch: Rich people unsafe as long as there’s poverty – Denise Williams
Denise Williams is the president and co-founder of Silicon Valley-Nigerian Economic Development Inc. She tells SUCCESS NWOGU about her background, career and aspirations
What has been your experience running SVNED?
I find that with running a business, you can have really good days and some days that are not so great. It is important to be surrounded by the right people and securing your present moment before taking the leap of faith into the business world.
SVNED has been a blessing by helping me identify skills I didn’t know I had. To be a co-founder and president was a perfect fit for me because I get to finally be myself – an American from Nigeria. I did not have to try to fit in with Americans or Nigerians. Although I was an avid user of many hardware and software applications homegrown in California, I never thought I would be part of the success story behind bridging the economic gap between Silicon Valley and the rest of the world.
There are many advantages to these two sides of the world coming together to find synergies that will lead to successes and investment opportunities.
Why do you, in partnership with some US organisations, want to distribute five containers of computers to Nigerian start-ups?
The move is geared at developing our technological capacity. An article I read recently stated that a four-year degree is no longer required to earn a six-figure salary. Jobs are created every day with the use of technology, and start-ups are bought and sold every day. So, one has to ask oneself, how does Nigeria rank when it comes to investment in start-up ideas developed by the youth? Those computers can help classrooms and small businesses in nurturing their technological capabilities.