“From our perspective, Africa is at the cusp of massive transformation. Some call it the fourth industrial revolution, some call it a disruption. I like to borrow a phrase from my children’s bedtime stories—Africa the sleeping giant is awakening.”
On the 20th and 21st of November 2018, the Emerging Valley African Tech and Emerging Innovations Summit 2018 took place in France. Holding its maiden edition back in 2017, the Emerging Valley Summit is organised primarily to transform the Aix-Marseille-Provence territory into a pivotal Hub that links Africa and Europe and their emerging markets through technology and innovation.
For the second edition this year, the focus was primarily on technological innovation in the African business ecosystem and most of the sessions revolved around this central theme. Ifeyinwa Ugochukwu, the Director Of Partnerships at the Tony Elumelu Foundation attended the event and spoke on the 21st of November at a fireside chat tagged “Tech Entrepreneurship In Africa”.
Joined on stage by Rémy Rioux, the Director General of the French Development Agency, they spoke about the place of innovation in Africa’s current technological entrepreneurship landscape, the bottlenecks affecting the tech space and the ways to mitigate and eradicate these bottlenecks.
“The youth need an enabling environment to innovate. Without this environment, this innovation is trapped in their minds.” She said.
Among the solutions for the African tech entrepreneurs, Ifeyinwa Ugochukwu stressed the importance of creating meaningful networks, particularly on digital platforms. One of such platforms discussed at length was TEFConnect, a digital product launched by the Tony Elumelu Foundation positioned as the world’s largest platform for entrepreneurs.
The platform is designed to connect entrepreneurs in Africa and the rest of the world to major players in the entrepreneurship ecosystem, business learning tools and investment opportunities.
Other activities that took place at the Emerging Valley Summit include a pitching competition, a participatory debate and various other panel sessions discussing the future of technology in the African continent.
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