After attending the AFSIC Conference 2019 at which he was a guest speaker , Rodrigue Fouafou, an investor and Africa Startup Ecosystem Builder, hosted a Symposium in London titled Diaspora Chat With Rod. This was a second edition following the first which was held in November 2018 in Zurich Switzerland. More than 30 people attended the Symposium hosted in London over the weekend. This was a good turnout considering the team had only 2 weeks to prepare.
Attendees included Prince Randy Koussou Alam-Sogan – The Founder of Black Lion Holdings, who took part in a panel together with Dr Tina Allton – an award-winning mentor and Vice President of Global Women Leaders Committee at the World Business Angels Investment Forum, Dorothy Mpyisi-Adebanjo – Director Empowerment at WEDO, as well as Letitia Seglah, a Blockchain and FinTech Consultant, and advocate for economic development through entrepreneurship.
1) What was the agenda of the symposium?
The agenda of the Symposium was to bring together the black Africans from the 55 states living in the Diaspora, to discuss the challenges we currently face today in all industries. Subjects discussed included:
How we can play a part as business leaders in the Diaspora to positively influence Financial Policies, Regulatory Policies and Frameworks in order to promote and enable investment in Africa,
The need to attract investments and promote tourism in Africa through media and policies,
The need to create Programs that will mould entrepreneurs and the young students in the diaspora alike to become well rounded, global leaders in their various capacities,
And how we can close the huge the gap in terms of sharing information in business.
2) What were some of the key takeaways from the event?
We recognize that SME’s are the engine of growth for most economies and therefore they require all the necessary support to enable SMEs to grow and scale. There is need to bridge the gap in business and investments amongst Africans and to create an enabling environment to attract
The Symposium started up as an idea but it has become a movement in which Africans in the Diaspora are coming together and rising up as one to change the narrative for our continent. We are gearing up to become part of the change we want to see, and we hope that all Africans in the Diaspora and back home will join us in our quest to improve our infrastructure, train entrepreneurs to become global leaders and give them a chance to grow their businesses into global market leaders in Africa and abroad.
3) Why are these type of gatherings important and what do they mean for African businesses?
These symposium meetings are important because they create a platform to exchange valuable trade information and opportunities, build synergies and business empires that will support the vision we have for Africa.
4) Are there other events in the pipeline?
There will be a follow up event, the 3rd edition of Diaspora Chat With Rod which will also be here in Europe towards the end of June, details will follow soon once everything has been confirmed.