NMK in association with Balancing Act presents an introductory overview of the digital media sector across the African continent. This evening seminar will highlight the leading markets for UK-based companies and the business opportunities that are currently arising.
The creative and commercial opportunities will be sketched out, along with some of the challenges and frustrations that can be encountered in many African markets. Issues such as technological infrastructure, consumer markets, skills levels and political stability will all be examined.
There will be case studies of digital media, telecoms and ICT ventures that are currently operating in Africa.
The seminar is intended for anyone interested in accessing African markets - whether it is working for, commissioning from, investing in, setting up or partnering with an African enterprise.
The seminar is sponsored by Burns Owens Partnership (www.bop.co.uk) and therefore free to attend, with refreshments provided.
Russell Southwood, Balancing Act
Russell Southwood is the founder and Chief Executive of Balancing Act (www.balancingact-africa.com), an organisation that encourages the development of useful applications of ICT in Africa, particularly content-based activities. It publishes a weekly e-letter on developments in telecoms, Internet and computing in Africa that currently goes out to over 6000 subscribers in government, the private sector, NGOs and education. He was the co-organiser of the Southern African Internet Forum. He has run a series of workshops on Entrepreneurialism and ICTs to help encourage existing and potential entrepreneurs. These have taken place in Ghana, Kenya, Botswana and Tanzania. Out of these workshops he has published a CD-ROM of learning materials. He has recently provided advice and assistance to organisations seeking to provide agricultural information and market prices in Ghana and elsewhere.
Kennedy is the founder and first managing editor for Zambia's first online news publication, the Dispatch: www.dispatch.co.zm Kennedy grew up in the northern part of Zambia where his parents were farmers, before studying journalism at Evelyn Hone College, Zambia and the University of Westminster. Upon graduation from Evelyn, Kennedy worked as a Business and Environmental Reporter with the Financial Times in Zambia and as transmission controller for the Trinity Broadcasting Network. Kennedy has spoken on ICT issues at numerous international conferences and events and is founder of Think Tank and Research Foundation established in 2002, www.thinking-tank.org
Judith Middleton is a Director the Cape Information Technology Initiative and has been part of the steering team since inception of this initiative. Her portfolio includes the marketing of CITI, the Bandwidth Barn incubator and the ICT cluster both nationally and Internationally. She was part of the development team which created Cape Town's first ICT incubator where she has been directly responsible for business development, marketing and supporting local companies with international expansion strategies. Judith is also a member of the Cape Mac Board of Advisors.
Dr Ayo Salami
Dr Ayo Salami is a co-founder of African Business Research, a research driven information portal and consultancy specializing in Africa. Prior to setting up ABR, Ayo worked at Nomura International where he was the Senior Equity Analyst covering Africa. He initiated Nomura's coverage of the region and has extensive knowledge of African companies and economies. Before this, Ayo was a lecturer at Cass Business School where he taught various subjects across the accounting and finance discipline on both undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes. Ayo has published in leading academic journals on the sources of synergy in corporate takeovers, and determinants of long-term security returns. He is a graduate of the London School of Economics and City University.
Burns Owens Partnership is a consultancy working with policy and decision makers to research and develop the links between the creative economy and social and economic development.
Digital Africa Links
In Search of Profitable Connections
Ghana's capital Accra has six times as many Internet cafes as London - but is the 'net delivering increased prosperity in the country? Report by the BBC's Briony Hale.
Is Hermann Chinnery-Hesse Africa's answer to Bill Gates? "I can compete brain for brain with anyone trying to do the same thing in the US".
Africa's Tech Pioneers
Africa is intent on bridging the digital divide, and the continent's "untapped potential has offered some entrepreneurs enviable business opportunities".
Through publications, conferences and consultancy, AITEC is committed to spreading computing and communications knowledge, expanding the IT market, promoting competition and developing local capacity in Africa.
E-Commerce in Developing Countries
DFID-funded report by the Insititute of Development Studies (University of Sussex) and the LSE. www.gapresearch.org/production/Report.pdf
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