Meet Ifediora Ugochukwu: One of the four finalists of the Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation.
He started off his journey as a Customer Care Representative at MTN Nigeria and moved on from there to join the Benin Electricity Distribution Company as an Electrical Engineer. It was there he started his company, Fedironics — an Intelligent Metering Company.
One of the solutions from Fedironics is iMeter, an incredibly smart meter that measures energy, detects tampering, manages energy, provides prepayment service, manages tariff and logs events in near-real time while integrating a dedicated mobile application interface (MAI).
in 2016, iMeter won ITU Telecom World Recognition for Excellence Award, it also became the fourth most innovative startup of the year at the African Startupper of the Year and it’s the same solution that has granted him entry into the Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation.
iMeter is a prepaid and affordable system that allows a two-way communication between consumers and utilities and it does this through a portal either via the web or through the iMeter app. With this, Nigerians who feel that their light bills don’t correspond to their usage can easily monitor their usage so that they are only billed for the energy they use.
The system also detects tampering and notifies the power utilities, this discourages vandalism of power equipment, improves power supplies for communities and reduces deaths by electrocution. Ifediora’s iMeter is competing with Gitta (Uganda) who developed a device that conducts fast malaria tests, Asante-Afrifa (Ghana) who innovated a textbook-sized mini science lab and Saguru (Zimbabwe) who invented a process that affordably recovers precious metals from autocatalytic converters. The four will pitch their innovations to a panel of judges on the 13th of June in Nairobi where the winner will receive £25 000, with £10 000 awarded to each of the runners-up.