Africa Tech Festival, Africa’s most influential tech event and largest gathering of technology and telecommunications professionals, will once again meet in Cape Town to collaborate, innovate, and map Africa’s digital progression. Keeping pace with the sheer scale of development and setting the scene for even more to come, this year’s festival will be the biggest, boldest, and most exciting yet.
Taking place 13-16 November this year, delegates and visitors can once again expect a supercharged comprehensive representation of the vast and broad technology ecosystem and an action-packed week celebrating the continent’s vibrant tech scene. As technology is ever evolving and growing, Africa Tech Festival is the ideal environment in which to stress test new ideas, as well the space in which to connect, foster cross-continental co-operation and collaboration and is a showcase for inspiring examples of tech for good.
Helping guide the process and ensuring the right content is on offer, organisers of the festival, Informa Tech, have gathered several of the continent’s most influential change shapers to form a Leadership Council.
Responsible for the overall direction of the festival, James Williams, Director, Events | Connecting Africa | Informa Tech, has a big task on his hands to ensure that the content not only resonates with where Africa is today, but in where it is headed tomorrow and beyond. Of the formation of the Leadership Council, Williams says: “For Africa Tech Festival to remain at the cutting edge of an industry that is changing so quickly, we decided to partner with the continent’s guiding lights who have their fingers on the digital pulse of the continent so we can keep our content relevant and on point.
“We are delighted with the results so far and thank our council members for giving of their time and expertise so readily. It is in collaboration that we can connect the dots and forge new connections that will lead to economic prosperity for all the African continent’s people.”
Members of the Leadership Council include:
· Amadou Diallo: Chief Executive Officer Middle East & Africa at DHL Global Forwarding
· Funke Opeke: CEO of MainOne
· Richard Cazalet: Exec Strategy and Transformation at Telkom SA
· Velma Corcoran: General Manager, Middle East and Africa at Airbnb
· Kuseni Dlamini: Chairman of Massmart
· Nitin Gajria: Managing Director, Sub-Saharan Africa at Google
· Prasanna Kumar Burri: Group Chief Information Officer, Dangote Group
· Nollie Maoto: Chief Data and Analytics Officer – Merchant Services, FNB South Africa
· Jocelyne Muhutu-Remy: Managing Director, Sub-Saharan Africa, Spotify
· Razvan Ungureanu: Group CTO for Airtel Africa
· Stephen Kiptinness, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer, Safaricom
Show and Tell
The lifeblood of future innovation and economic sustainability are today’s entrepreneurs who have the ideas and energy to create solutions to many of the world’s problems – not just Africa’s. Consequently, Africa Tech Festival and its Leadership Council have made provision to increase the footprint of this aspect of the show. Delegates can thus expect a thriving and impactful space to present new ideas and attract investment.
Velma Corcoran, sums up why the festival is more important than ever, saying: “In bringing together industry players, start-ups, decision makers and thought leaders, Africa Tech Festival provides opportunities for investment, scale, partnership, and collaboration. This amplifies the impact of the digital economy for the continent, which is critical now, as the cost-of-living crisis deepens.
“Going forward, the continent cannot solely rely on the formal economy for jobs and income generation. The tech ecosystem is critical to ensuring that economies are inclusive and sustainable.”
As the African technology landscape evolves, so too does the festival itself. Aside from the appointment of a leadership council and a bigger footprint for the entrepreneur and innovation show space (AHUB), Africa Tech Festival is also exploring ways to increase the festival component of the event.
The A-Fest music night will be back, as too, The Africa Tech Festival Awards (formerly AfricaCom Awards), which this year will take place at the luxury 5-star Mount Nelson hotel.
In keeping with the festival’s bolder direction there will be several changes this year, including the introduction of new themes and invigorating features like a focused media and entertainment stream. There is also an even better value proposition for those partners looking to get involved and co-host satellite events. In short, Africa Tech Festival will be looking to take over the City of Cape Town this November, with the festival the centre-point for tech start-ups, investors, policymakers and curious minds of all ages and backgrounds.
Africa Tech Festival will release its outline agenda later in May, but delegates can look forward to a bigger exhibition showcase in the AfricaCom and AfricaTech halls, and the AHUB claims its own dominant space, along with an enterprise accelerator programme, talent & skills workshops, a focus on sustainability & climate resilience, and energy to drive the technology and fuel Africa’s connectivity.
Africa Tech Festival is the gateway to the future and delegates, exhibitors and media are invited to experience the perfect balance of business opportunities, future-focused content and true festival fun that will help power the continent’s digital transformation.