Women in technology sector recognised

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Vuvale Outsourcing team with Trade Minister Manoa Kamikamica clinched the Innovative Tech Culture Award. Picture: SUPPLIED/MINISTRY OF TRADE

Contributions of women to Fiji’s technology sector were given due recognition at last Friday’s Women in Tech (WINTECH) Awards, hosted by industry secretariat Outsource Fiji.

Held in Suva to “honour and celebrate the achievements of exceptional women who are breaking barriers and making significant contributions to Fiji’s tech industry,” the inaugural event acknowledged 16 recipients who have demonstrated outstanding skills, innovation, and leadership in various tech-related fields.

“The event featured dynamic panel discussions on women’s leadership in tech, followed by skill-enhancing workshops and round table sessions for aspiring women,” said Outsource Fiji executive director Sagufta Janif said. ”

Participants included high school and university students, SMEs, corporates, and women from diverse sectors, created a vibrant tapestry of collaboration.”

Officiating at the awards ceremony, Acting Prime Minister and Minister for Trade, Cooperatives, SMEs, and Communications Manoa Kamikamica said such events “play a crucial role in bridging the divide and opening doors for women to actively participate and contribute to the digitalisation of Fiji and fosters an environment of inclusivity and empowerment for women in the tech industry is essential for the nation’s progress”.

While congratulating the award recipients, Ms Janif expressed her admiration for their accomplishments and the impact they have made in Fiji’s tech space.

As a commitment to fostering the next generation of trailblazers, she said Outsource Fiji will be directing 10 per cent of the proceeds from the WINTECH Awards ticket towards a scholarship for young girls, encouraging them to pursue a career in tech.

The award categories and recipients are as follows:

Individual Awards

• Rising Star in Tech: Ashni Singh, developer – Team Lead, Oceanic Communications; • Problem-Solving Prodigy: Bandana Alisha Devi, cybersecurity analyst, Greymouse; • Tech Entrepreneur of the Year: Dipti Sharma, founder, MyDesk/Eventuros; • Digital Transformations Trailblazer: Ashmita Shivani Kumar, consultant – Technology Services, KPMG; • Game Changer in Tech: Joana Kabakoro-Smith, chief operations officer, Fintech Pacific; • Tech Policy Advocate: Tupou Baravilala, director-general, Ministry of Trade, Cooperatives, SMEs and Communications; • Digital Visionary: Anju Mangal, chief of party – USAID Pacific Digital Connectivity and Cybersecurity; and • BPO Industry Excellence Award: Carol Watkins, CEO, Pacific Centercom.

BPO/TELCO Special Recognition Award – Elenoa Biukoto, CEO, Vodafone; – Azariah Chung, head of operations, Rosie Outsourcing (Fiji) Pte Ltd; – Georgina Naguilevu, associate director – Disability Inclusion, Justice and Transformation, Tetra Tech; and – Shally Jannif, Regional CEO, Digicel.

Group Business Awards • Innovative Tech Culture Award – Vuvale Outsourcing; • STEM Education Champion – Graduate Women Fiji; • Tech 4 Good – South Pacific Business Development Pte (Fiji) Ltd; and • Gender-Inclusive Tech Innovator Award – Digicel Fiji.

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