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Investors and Startups turn their Heads Towards Africa at the OurCrowd Summit

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Investors and Startups turn their Heads Towards Africa at the OurCrowd Summit

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On Thursday, Feb 13, 2020, Empower Africa was a proud sponsor of The 2020 OurCrowd Global Investors’ Summit, one of the largest tech conferences in Israel. The Summit brought together thousands of investors and tech entrepreneurs from around the world for a day of learning and networking. African delegates included angel investors from Kenya, VC partners from South Africa, students from Uganda and Tanzania, businessmen from Nigeria, a host of Israeli companies already operating in Africa, and government officials from Ethiopia and Botswana.

We were delighted to hear CEO John Medved speak from the main stage and highlight the commercial opportunities in Africa today. Medved urged investors and tech companies to increase their attention on the continent and to utilize their innovative technologies to drive impact.

The networking opportunities for the Empower Africa team were plentiful. At the invite-only Gala Dinner, held the night before the Summit, Empower Africa’s executive team represented the company to a wide range of investors, business leaders and members of the OurCrowd community.

As sponsors for the event, Empower Africa held a booth at the summit to promote investment in Africa. The booth was constantly busy with hundreds of Summit participants who were seeking to learn how to invest and do business on the continent. Julius Tsheko, the Project Manager for the Botswana Investment and Trade Center (BITC), spent most of the event at the Empower Africa booth, answering questions and engaging with a wide range of businessmen and investors. Julius expressed his deep appreciation to Empower Africa for facilitating introductions to Israeli technology companies interested in expanding their operations into Botswana.

For those less familiar with Africa’s private sector, Empower Africa held a quiz that invited participants to learn more about the business landscape of Africa and win an all expenses paid business trip on our next major visit to the continent. Questions such as “what is the fastest growing source of spending in African markets today?” had some stumped (by the way, it’s consumer spending) which led to fascinating dialogue with our team members. The contest is open until April 2nd and can be entered here.

One key takeaway from the event was the need to make use of the new technologies produced today to empower emerging markets and actualize the human potential that exists in these locations. This is in line with the growing trend of creating impact businesses- business that does well by doing good.

An important value we saw demonstrated at the OurCrowd Summit was that of collaboration. Politics were set aside and people from all regions showed up in Jerusalem to network and celebrate the technology community’s innovations and accomplishments.

The event was well produced, rich with insightful content, and an excellent platform for interacting with fascinating people. Most importantly, for us as a team, we left the event optimistic that the Israeli tech ecosystem will have a vital role in driving sustainable economic development in Africa.

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Uk Africa Summit Week in London – Driving Business in Africa Event at the Arts Club

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Uk Africa Summit Week in London - Driving Business in Africa Event at the Arts Club

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Curious to know what an Empower Africa event is like? Watch the video below.

Foreign investment can be very rewarding – but it can also be challenging. Understanding the business landscape in a country you wish to invest in is key to successful foreign investment. And to understand the business landscape, you need to have the right network.

At Empower Africa, we understand the importance of bringing the different stakeholders to the table, involving them in the decision-making process, and facilitating networking opportunities.

The recent “Driving Business in Africa” cocktail reception at the Arts Club in London is a prime example of Empower Africa’s network building tools. The reception, held during the week of the January 2020 UK-Africa Business Summit, brought together some seventy investors, businessmen, government officials, and non-profit representatives to share ideas and spark conversations on driving business in Africa. The different speakers who graced the event sparked thought-provoking conversations on the benefits of investing in Africa.

A special highlight of the evening was a speech given by Presidential Advisor on Economic and Financial Policy in Sierra Leone Mr. Joe Demby. Demby endorsed Empower Africa’s activity in Sierra Leone and its mission of empowering Africa through private sector development. Demby also spoke of the role that human capital development needs to play in sustainable national economic growth. Demby discussed President Bio’s commitment to human capital development in Sierra Leone and recalled a conversation he had had with the President on the topic eight years prior, before President Bio assumed office. Finally, Demby invited those in attendance to invest in Sierra Leone.

The evening also featured speeches by Shai Bernstein, V.P. of Business Development and Operations at Empower Africa; Zandile Nkwanyana, President of the Africa Business Club at London Business School; Sharon Bar-Li, Deputy Head of Mission at the Israel Embassy in the UK; Ron Crean, Vice President of Commercial Business at Windward; and Mr. Douglas Hansen, Founder and Chairman of Future Planet Capital.

The uniting theme that stood out from all the speakers was the value that can be created when diverse groups come together.