Promoting Trade and Entrepreneurship for Mutual Prosperity

Promoting Trade and Entrepreneurship for Mutual Prosperity

– Our first panel this morning is Promoting Trade for Mutual Prosperity. Please welcome our panelists to the stage. (upbeat rock music) (audience applauds) – Okay, I’m gonna be in the front. – I got my coffee. Good morning! – [Audience] Good morning. – Okay, we need to do a little bit better. Good morning!
(panelists chuckle) – [Audience] Good morning! – That’s right, we need energy! How is everyone? (audience cheers quietly) Yeah, good? How’s your experience
been so far, YALI fellows? (audience murmurs and cheers) Okay, how has your experience been? (crowd cheers) (laughs) That’s right. Well, my name is Rahama
Wright, I am the founder of a social-impact business
that works with women in Northern Ghana. We create high-quality
shea-butter products that we bring to US market as a way to support local
economic development and bring amazing
products to the US market. I’m really excited to be
here this morning to moderate this panel on trade engagement
and entrepreneurship. So, are you all ready
to have a great time? – [Audience] Yeah. – This has to be interactive,
so get your questions ready when we get into Q and A. We wanna make sure that we get all of your questions answered, and if you don’t ask us questions, we’ll start asking you questions. So, don’t mess around. (laughs) So, let me introduce the panelists. To my left is Regina Honu, and she is the founder and
CEO of Soronko Solutions, and then next to her is Christophe Allard, the Director of North
America, Brussels Airlines. Then, next to him is Roslyn Docktor; she is the Director of
Government and Regulatory Affairs for Watson Health and the
Middle East and Africa in IBM. Next to her is Melissa Flood,
and she’s the Vice President of Social Impact and Public Affairs at Marriott International,
and seated next to her is Sean Mulvaney, the Associate Director for International Business
Development and US Tax, Global Government
Relations and Public Policy at Proctor & Gamble. Seated next to him is Jonathan Ortmans, the President of The Global
Entrepreneurship Network. Give them a warm welcome! (chuckles)
(audience applauds) So, we are going to start the panel by having everyone briefly
introduce themselves and the work that they’re doing. So, Regina, we’ll start with you. – Okay. Hello. My name is Regina Honu, and
I was a 2014 YALI Fellow. I currently run a tech social enterprise. I have a for-profit, which is a software-development
company, and a not-for-profit that has a coding academy
that teaches from, well, we start from four years old all the way to 75 years, how to code and digital skills. We also work with the
disabled, so deaf children and autistic children, we
all teach them how to code. I have been recently
nominated to the board of the savings-and-loans. I’m interested to bring
technology into finance. – Wow. (panelists chuckle) (audience applauds) I’m Christophe Allard, Sales Director, North America, Brussels Airlines. First of all, I want to thank you and everyone for having me today. It’s truly an honor for me to be standing in front of such a distinguished audience. I was in Africa for five yeas, and when I got here for a first
time, I was truly surprised by the dynamism of the diaspora in the United States and
Canada, particularly, but now when I look at you
as the young African leaders, the future of Africa, I have
to say it’s mindblowing. So, all of you, hats off. In my capacity as sales
director, North America, I have pleasure to deal a lot with the African communities. One passenger out of
two on Brussels Airlines actually flies from the
US or Canada to Africa, so Africa is very close to our heart, and Brussels airlines is a
part of the Lufthansa group. Lufthansa group, that
means 42 destinations across the continent of Africa, the 311 daily or weekly
departures from the United States and Canada to Africa, so that’s a very big and important network for the group. Thank you. (audience applauds) – Thank you, it is a pleasure to be here. I would love to practice my Bemba; we have any Zambians? (audience members cheer) (speaking in foreign language) (Roslyn laughs) When I was a (speaking
in foreign language), do we have any Swahili-speakers? When I was a (speaking
in foreign language), I lived in Zambia but
traveled all over East Africa. I was a Peace Corps volunteer,
and I also had the pleasure of spending a couple
months in Ghana with IBM, who I work for now.
– Yeah, Ghana! (speaking in foreign language) – IBM is 100 years old. We’ve been operating in Africa since 1920. We’re now in 24 countries, and
we have two development labs where we develop innovations
and commercialize them in AI, data, and cloud,
in Africa, for Africa, and for the world. When I say data, we all know data, right? We all use data all the time. IBM sees data as a naturla resource, but unlike oil, the
value could accrue to all if we can use AI not as
artificial intelligence, but augmented intelligence,
man and machine, and IBM is committed to ushering
in technology responsibly and training IBMers and
the world on how to use AI. In fact, we have a Digital
Nation Africa program for free that I’d like to talk about later, where anyone can lean the AI
skills to unleash the value, ’cause we believe, unlike
oil, the value can accrue to broad-based economic
prosperity for all of us, and I look forward to that conversation and how we can work together
today and moving forward to make sure the government
has the right policies in place to make sure this data
that’s driving innovation, driving entrepreneurs in
the businesses you’re doing, does accrue value to all. So, it’s a pleasure to be
here and I look forward to our conversation, in
any language you choose. Thank you.
(panelists laugh) (audience applauds) – Hi everyone, thanks for the opportunity; Melissa Flood with Marriott. In my capacity at Marriott, I
look after government affairs and also social impact for the company. Government affairs, of course,
is engaging with governments to make sure that they’ve got
the right policies in place to facilitate travel tourism,
infrastructure, and growth, so that more people can
travel and see the world. Then, on the social-impact side, making sure that we’re a force
for good in the communities where we’re doing business,
that we are a positive force outside of the four walls of our hotels; so, what are our local partnerships, what are the local
investment opportunities, the local NGOs that we’re working with to make sure that we’re being respectful of the environmental
resources, the human resources, et cetera, as we’re
going into new markets, and doing so sustainably. It’s really our green card for growth, and Africa represents
tremendous opportunity for the company. We’re a 90-year-old
company, 91 years, actually. Our first hotel in Africa
was in 1971, built in 1971; today, we have 140 hotels
across 21 countries with 60 in the pipeline,
bringing six new brands to the continent, which is great. We have 30 brands, 13 of
which are represented today. So we’re seeing tremendous growth, certainly amongst pan-African travel, but international airlift and
with greater connectivity, we’re seeing tremendous growth of international visitation. When international visitors
come in, they spend more, and then they leave, so it’s
a great economic opportunity travel and tourism represents
for the continent broadly, so I’m thrilled to be here today. Thank you. (audience applauds) – Good morning. Welcome. My name is Sean Mulvaney, I
work for Proctor & Gamble. It was started by two
entrepreneurs 180 years ago– – Wow. He’s got us beat! – It’s headquartered in Cincinnati– – We bow down. (laughs) – Yeah, it grew from a small startup and spread all around the world, but today, I’d like to
frame my comments, really, help you understand who P & G
is, wat our business model is, and then relate that to the
mission and topic of the panel. P & G, we make consumer products, we’re roughly a $65 billion company. We have about 95,000 employees worldwide. We operate in 10 different
consumer categories of goods: Tide, Bounty, Charmin, Always, Cascade, Crest toothpaste,
these are all familiar brands that P & G makes, and they’re
probably over 20 brands that are roughly billion-dollar brands that P & G has marketed
all around the world. Our business model is one where we believe in open trade and open
markets, everywhere, because we don’t make consumer products in every country of the world. What we’ll make in one country will actually trade with another. So, we make detergent in one,
we’ll make diapers in another, we’ll make toothpaste in a third, and we’ll make cough-and-cold
medicine in a fourth, and then P & G affiliates
will trade with one another across national boundaries,
serving consumers through all of our product lines. We regard Africa as an enormous
market for us globally. We are largely, 65% of our sales are in developed-country
markets, but 35% of our sales are in emerging and
developing-country markets, so we see this as our future for grown. A great thing about our business model that I’d like to talk about later is actually, we produce close to consumer. We’re not really exporting from the US, we’re making consumer
goods in the countries where we sell them. (audience applauds) – Well hi, I’m Jonathan Ortmans. I’m a two-time entrepreneur,
I’ve had two startups and two exits, and since then, I’ve dedicated most of my career to figuring out new and better ways to enable people like you to birth anew, to figure out better ways of doing things, to ultimately become entrepreneurs. In the work doing that, we
now work in 170 countries as the Global Entrepreneurship Network, which is now just 10 years
old; we’re the little puppy on the panel here.
(panelists chuckle) But we’d like to think we have a big punch in those countries for
one important reason, and that is that we believe
that we have a new generation of young people who are building companies with a different ethic. It’s not that it’s a generation
of social entrepreneurs; there’s lots of excellent
social entrepreneurship, but it’s the for-profit entrepreneurs that are not willing to build companies at the expense of any social values that come with that. So, you’re seeing a much more generous, much more well-connected, and quite frankly, a generation of people that are having a lot more fun with this as they ultimately disrupt new industries. My background as an economist
and as an entrepreneur obviously brings some rigor
and discipline to that, but what we’re really about is
enabling grassroots movements across national boundaries to build one global
entrepreneurial ecosystem. So, it doesn’t really
matter whether you’re from one part of the world or another, you can leverage this powerful dynamic of entrepreneurial new-value creation. So, we’re thrilled. I will say that we’ve just opened our first startup campus in Africa; I’m proud to say it is the
largest startup campus in Africa. It’s called 22 on Sloane, if
you Google it, in Johannesburg. We just opened it a few months
ago with Richard Branson. It is, for the Americans,
100,000 square feet, which is about 10,000 square meters, and it’s kicked off interest
from Ghana, Nigeria, Egypt, and several other
countries in Africa that are gonna now do the same
and create a central location where you can come together
with other Africans and leverage the global
connectivity that now exists in the global entrepreneurial ecosystem. – That’s excellent. (audience applauds) Jonathan, I’m gonna stay
with you for a little bit. The ILO estimates that about
60% of Africa’s population is under the age of 25, and
the African Development Bank estimates that about 1/3 of the population between 15 and 35 are unemployed. So, when we think about
the development of Africa, entrepreneurship is a
cfritical component to that. With GEN, and having activity
in 170 locations globally, what is the African
entrepreneurial ecosystm like? What are some of the
things that you’re seeing, whatare some of the
trends that you’re seeing when it comes to entrepreneurship? – Well, the first point is, of course, you’ve put your finger
on the number-one driver as to why everybody is
interested in entrepreneurship. It’s not just that it’s
popular and it’s sexy, that you’ve got people like
Mark Zuckerberg out there that are appealing to
people, it’s the fact that, if you look at the United
States data over the course of the last 25 years, and
listen carefully to this, all of the net new jobs come from firms less than five years old. So, on average, these older,
170-year-old companies are typically shedding jobs
as technology makes it easier for them to do things with fewer people, and their shareholders typically say, “We’re motivated to create efficiencies.” But most new firms are always hiring. So, clearly, this has been a
great way that we’ve been able to incentivize powerful new constituencies into helping entrepreneurs in
those early stages of growth, because it’s attackign a
youth-unemployment problem. Now, I will say, Africa’s got
this other dimension to it in that you’ve got a lot
of necessity driving it. You’ve also got a lot of
motivation from other organizations around the world, who, quite frankly, have been told by a lot of Africans, “Stop looking at this as an
aid situation, and look at this “as how do you help
empower us and engage us “and include us in everything
that you’re doing,” which is the sort of
strategy we’ve approached. So, we are really bullish, obviously, in the entrepreneurial
ecosystems emerging in Africa. They’re able to leapfrog, from
a technology point of view, and not have to update
or deal with the fact that they’re heavily invested
in older infrastructure, but they’re able to capitalize on the fact that most other companies
and governments are motivated to see Africa succeed,
not just because of, as Sean was mentioning,
he sees future growth for the company in those markets, but also because most
governments are interested in creating trading partners
in economic relationships, rather than ones… But most importantly, I
think it’s the sort of energy and the bottom-up spirit of
communities throughout Africa that makes me most bullish. We see, of course, massive
leverage of technology, and I think we’ll hear about this later from a coding perspective, and
we’re also seeing a change, in the last two or three years. We work actively in about
23 countries in Africa. We do something, by the way,
called global entrepreneurship. How many of you have heard
of global entrepreneurship? Anybody heard of that? Well, it’s a campaign toget
more people to consider the path of entrepreneurship in their career, and it’s around the world,
it’s about 40,000 events that happen in the same week in November, and it’s a big celebration of
the entrepreneurial spirit, but when we look at that kind of activity, we’re seeing more and more communities engaging in this experience
of testing an idea, figuring out a better
way of doing something, forming a team, recycling
the idea if it doesn’t work, and I think most of the
ecosystems that we work in on the continent have
beena ble to adapt faster to this new, lean culture of
how do you actully do this without having a lot of resources. So, we’re bullish on it,
it’s the reason why we opened our first campus in South
Africa rather than anywhere else in the world, and why we will be spending a considerable amount of
time; and I have to tell you, I hate things to be
always about South Africa, apologies to the South
Africans in the room, but we often give too much emphasis. They’re over there, alright,
we’ll give you a shout-out, but I will say, the last two winners of our global Country of the Year awards have been from Africa, and
I think it really speaks to the immense, not just
potential, but I think the immense value that
people are now engaging in in realizing not just the
job-creatino opportunities, but I think the general
economic-growth opportunities of homegrown, grassroots
entrepreneurial ecosystems, building products and
services that Africans need. – Absolutely. – Are we allowed to have a
disagreement on the panel? – (laughs) Absolutely, yes. – A caveat offered as it
relates to employment. I will speak for the
travel-and-tourism industry, tremendous growth. These are jobs you can’t
outsource, and in many respects, you cannot automate. So, we now have 700,000,
roughly, associates globally, andwith the growth tahtwe
are seeing in Africa, same story there: these hotels
are physical structures, we actually don’t own
the physical structures, we’re not a real-estate company, so those are local partnerships, those are local folks that
typically, either a large fund or a group of people,
a family, for example, that can get together and are
the real-estate asset owner, and then the people that are
employed are, by and large, all local people. We still view most cities in Africa as high-demand markets under-hoteled. So, for us, the development
and the growth pipeline means there’s gonna be a
tremendous amount of hiring continuing to come on the continent, but that’s a replicable
story globally as we continue to grow, and just based
on the nature of our jobs. – Roz, did you wanna– – You can tell I’m eager to get in also. I don’t think technology
is replacing jobs; that’s what I said, it’s
augmented intelligence, not man versus machine,
but man with machine. It’s just transforming the
way we work and the jobs. How many of you checked the weather today on your phone, your little app? (Rahama chuckles)
That’s IBM. Right? And that was a startup,
the weather company, that we acquired. We like entrepreneurs, one,
because we might acquire you, or two,
(audience chuckles) you might use our technology. That’s why we see it as an ecosystem, not a plus-minus but a
win-win for everyone, and why we launched this
free skills program, if I can touch on that for a minute. When you go home, you
can’t access it in the US, but when you go home, go
to Digital Nation Africa. It’s a funny name, Digital Nation Africa, but in short, we call it
DNA, like, in your DNA, everybody needs to know technology.,
and we offer three levels of courses for free, web-based. The first level is the explorer. You guys are all probably
way beyond the explorer, but maybe some family members, friends, that just introduce you, what is AI? You can even take a course on AI. What is blockchain, which
I’d like to talk about later. What is cybersecurity? Not how to use the Web
and find your email, how to develop an app. All of that is what we call exploring. Then we have what we call innovating, and that’s kinda getting
to the entrepreneur: how do you develop that app
and then attach cybersecurity? We actually give you a
platform and free cloud space for you to develop and explore
and use the technology, to put it to use to solve your business or someone else’s problems. That’s what we call the innovator, and the last one is
what we call new collar. IBM didn’t coin this word,
but we’re going with it. There used to be the white-collar jobs, the blue-collar jobs. Today, we think most
are gonna be new-collar. Anyone that has IT skills
can probably find a job with any of these companies,
or you’ll be more successful in your own business. But what we provide in
that part is job matching. We can use our AI to help you find a job and identify what skills
are needed in that area, working with local companies
and working with the government that wants to build industries. We have a huge program in South Africa with the Black Industrial Program, and in other countries, everywhere
we have a local partner. So, I encourage you to go home and look at, and welcome thoughts on it. If it doesn’t do something
you wish, or you have ideas, please work with us, because
that’s what we like to do, we like to engage, and
we think, collectively, people and technology together can have a transformative power. – Thank you. So, Regina, you’re a
successful entrepreneur. Take us back to when you
first started your enterprise. I think that there are
some people in the udience who’d be really interested in learning about some of the resources
that you were able to tap into to grow your business. So, take us to that moment. – Okay. I never saw myself as an entrepreneur, I don’t think I was socialized like that. I’m sure some people can relate
to the type of socialization that you’ll get as an African woman, and my socialization was
more, you find a job, you find a husband, you make children. So, when the whole concept
of entrepreneurship came up, I was very scared and I’d always say, and you hear this a lot with women, there’s a voice that keeps
telling you what you can’t do. There’s all this data on when
there’s a job application and a man just checks
20%, he still goes for it, but women need to cross all
the Ts and dot all the I’s. So, I kept telling myself how
I wasn’t going to make it, because I was coming from
a middle-class family, and I didn’t have a rich uncle, and I thought you need a rich uncle. (panelists chuckle) But I just essentially had two good ideas. First, I wanted to use
technology to get young people in my country to be able to
be prepared for the future of work, and also to
critical-think and problem-solve, because a big challenge
in our educational system is rote memorization, and
that’s what I went through. I can draw a very advanced
electrical circuit, but if you give me two wires,
I will just be looking at you like, what do we do with this? Also, I saw an unmet need with small- and medium-scale enterprises
that needed technology, because the technology
companies were forcused on the big corporates, and
nobody was really looking at the SMEs in my country, that’s Ghana. So, I decided to put the two together: why don’t I work for
profit, generate money, and then use my money to run
my social-impact project, because I always thought
about self-sustainability from day one. I thought, “Okay, even
though I want to work “toward social impact, it would be great “to receive donor funding,”
but I would always want to be in control of at least the direction and also be able to sustain the projects, because I had seen amazing projects that once the funding ran
out, the project stopped. So, it was very challenging,
I had to bootstrap. I started with my own money. I started off in my parents’, ’cause my father had free internet, so that’s some of the benefits, and I worked through the idea, but there was one thing
I was deliberate about, and I think that really helped me. I asked myself, “What are my shortfalls?” That was I was very reserved and shy, but I was great with technology, and I wanted to create
myself as a thought leader in my space. I said, “Okay, I may not be as
charismatic to go to people, “but what I want to do is position myself “so that people find me. “I want to be visible. “I want to be able to attract
as many opportunities, “but in order to do
that, I must be visible.” So, I was very deliberate
in how I used social media and how I used the media as
a tool, not only for advocacy but also to make sure
that I promoted the course that I was passionate
about, and my business. So, on all the social-media platforms, if you wanted information on
technology, women empowerment, technology for social development, I was the number-one go-to person. I was tweeting, Facebooking
the same message. I quickly got, I think a
year into my organization, I was profiled on CNN. Well, Sheryl Snadberg wrote about me, Lean In For Two, and they
discovered me off of Twitter, so it has really helped
that I took that step to make sure that i was being intentional about creating not only a personal brand, but a brand for the organization. So, it hasn’t been easy,
but I mean, (chuckles) it’s been ebbs and flows, ups and downs, but I’m still learning
and I’m still growing. – That’s fantastic. So, even before you had
everything together, you decided to take that
leap, and you were able to connect your passion,
your vision, to other people who were able to elevate you. That’s amazing. Christophe, I’m gonna go to you next. When it comes to best practices in terms of entrepreneurial development, and Regina just shared her story in terms of when she started,
some of the challenges she was facing, what do you
think that governments can do to really support entrepreneurs
within their countries? – Well, based on our
experience at Lufthansa group, we have two pillars that we use for philanthropic initiatives
and entrepreneurship support is on the one-hand side,
the Brussls Airlines Be Foundation for Africa, and the Lufthansa Group Help Alliance that you may have seen
yesterday at our photobooth. We very much engage
into education programs and supporting entrepreneurs,
artists, who really expose what Africa truly is our view, and Africa, according to us, is really modern and contemporary. So, I think when we start
trying to change perception about Africa and showing
what Africa truly is, that has to be initiated locally. I was having a very
interesting conversation with one of the fellows yesterday, and that fellow was teling
me that we need to change the perception of the Africans themselves, and how they look at their own country, and the potential of their
country, their own potential. We are there as private
companies, organizations, to support government to
develop that perception locally first, and then we
can spread the word globally. So, I think it’s important
for government to have a long-term vision. We see, on a daily
basis, dozens of requests coming from all over Africa,
ending up at Lufthansa, Austrian, Swiss, Brussls Airlines, for support, for sponsorship,
so it makes it very difficult for us to choose and pick
what is really relevant or consistent with or vision. So, I think for us, it’s very important that we have the right partners,
be it diplomatic corps, be it whatever, chamber of commerce or pan-African organization,
that really have that long-term vision, that
would be the first point. The second is really for
government to team up with private operators. I think when you try to
define that long-term vision, it’s not all about replicating
what your neighbor is doing, it’s all about better
understanding what are the needs of your own country, of your own market, and what is lacking,
what are the weaknesses, what are the strengths,
and really leverage those. I think private operators,
local operators, or global operators, they
may be also well-positioned to understand that better and quicker, and giving the proper means to government to really identify what could
be a potential strategy. Then, the third one would
be really to engage socially by developing community. I think when you start doing something that’s very much like IREX and YALI, it’s not all about
sending people off once, it’s about crreating a community, a village where people
can really relate to, can share experience, and can
really grow on the long run and really change; I think
that’s what makes a program successful in the long term. – Yeah, I couldn’t agree
more on the perception issue. So, I’m going to turn to you, Melissa, because I know you have a
public-affairsbackground. When it comes to storytelling,
how important is it for entrepreneurs to be
able to tell their story, and what advice do you
have for entrepreneurs who are really trying to
do what Regina has shared, get more exposure and visibility
for the work they’re doing? – Right. Well, storytelling is,
I think, a challenge for mature industries as much as it is for upstarts and entrepreneurs. It is very difficult in this
particularly noisy environment to get lift, and I think it
can be a frustration point, candidly; I think even for
any company of any size, for any individual that’s
looking to higlight something, whether you’re talking about
a business opportunity, whether you’re talking
about a growth opportunity, whether you’re talking about
something really incredible like a positive story of your engagement in a particular community,
it’s just hard to get lift out of that, it’s hard
to get eyeballs on it. It doesn’t mean you stop trying, and it’s always really important
to have good partnerships, people to tell your story. I think for us, for example,
we’ve seen excellent lift, not because of anything that
we have said, but for example, we’ve partnered with the
Akilah Institute for Women in Rwanda, and we were able
to take several graduates, over a dozen graduates,
to the Middle East, train them in our hotels
in the Middle East in managerial roles, and
then when the Kigali Marriott opened a few years ago,
thoswe women came back and they were the management
team of that hotel. The pride of those women
in being the leaders, and in leadership rolse, helping to staff the rest of the hotel as it
opened, was really incredible. We got excellent
visitbility on that story, not because of Marriott,
but because of Akilah, and because we had an excellent partner, and that partnership, of
course, continues today. So, some of those
partnerships that you have, the public-private partnershpis,
partnerships with NGOs, others in the community, that’s a good way to help bring some visibility
and broaden the network of folks that are looking
at or caring about a particular investment or opportunity, or just bringing visibility
to your initiative. – Hmm. Sean. You run a CPG company. (chuckles) I think often, when we hear
about entrepreneurship, technology, obviously, is one
that gets a lot of attention, but when it comes to consumer goods, sometimes we don’t hear
enough about CPG companies. For those who are in the audience who are creating a
product, who are creating a fast-moving good, what
advice would you give them, and it sounds like with P
& G, you’re really focusing on producing close to market, so I feel like there could be
opportunity for entrepreneurs who are in your markets to
be part of your supply chains and value chains. – Well, let me hold off
on our business model of producing close to consumer and really target your question, ’cause P & G, it’s a really large company, and one of the things within P & G that its leadership always does is try to drive home putting
the consumer at the center of everything that we do. So, that would be what
I would offer advice, if you’re in the consumer-product segment and you’re thinking about
developing, marketing a product, is making sure that you have
the consumer at the center of everything that you do,
because it really starts out with understanding consumer
need, through consumer insights, and then having a product
that meets that need in a very noticeable and superior way, like we say, also, with
convenient packageing, with clear communication,
and being able to have that in a very shoppable format
inside a retail environment where consumers can find the product. We’re often doing battle in the mktplace and thiking in terms of
making sure that we win at two critical moments for consumers: one is at that purchase,
where we wanna make sure that we win with compeling
communication at shelf, and then second is when the consumer actually uses the product. We wanna make sure that
we meet that objective of what we call delighting the consumer. If we’re able to accomplish those things, of consumer insight, meeting a need in a superior and noticeable way, then a lot of the other
things can fall into place. If you don’t have those things,
nothing you do after that will make it work, so I
would start out with that. – Thank you. Jonathan, yes. Did you have a question? – I was gonna say, I
was gonna build on that, ’cause sometimes, I know with
a lot of the entrepreneurs that we work with in Africa, they’re like, “Well, it’s hard for
me to sometimes relate “to a corporate environment,” and this consumer-centric
point is extremely important, but it’s also important
right at the inception of your company, and
it’s the whole concept around the iterative process
of testing your ideas in a very open-source way. The old model, five or
10 years ago, used to be that you were kinda secretive
about what you’re doing, and now, you’re like, hey,
I wanna co-create this with the world. A famous entrepreneur has called
this building the airplane in the air: you’re out
there and you’re saying, let’s get all of the feedback
from this, quote, “consumer,” my potential consucmer,
let’s get people involved, let’s do it together,
let’s crowdsource this. And yeah, sometimes there’s a little piece of the secret sauce that you
don’t necessarily communicate, maybe how you’re gonna make
this disruptive and different, but the key thing here is
that you are more likely to see a problem in a
way that you could solve than, quite frnkly, someone
that’s had their brain, someone like me, (chuckles)
who might have been a little bit older and had
their brain into doing this in a certain way for a period of time. This is the really dramatic opportunity for African entrepreneurs
that I wanna make sure I’ve had a chance to emphasize, which is what we’re really seeing
around the world is this: every single traditional
industry’s business model is getting disruptive. It’s not just the Ubers, and the Airbnbs, it’s every single traditional company. And we have relationships
with big companies because they’re asking us to help them disrupt themselves internally. We actually source
people from our ecosystem in accelerators around
the world, and we’ll say, “Alright, we’ll get these five guys “and see if you can bring
them in for six months.” We’re doing it, actually,
with an insurance company in aFrica that I won’t
mention, where, actually, they’ve put some of their
people in our startup campus, for the purposes of actually figuring out what are the young African
entrepreneurs gonna do to their traditional business model in the next five to 10 years,
’cause they didn’t think they’re gonna operate the way they are. So, I think this is
the question of saying, what’s the consumer want? I always use Uber, ’cause
it’s easy for people to understand, but the
consumer wanted the ability to be able to immediately
access a vehicle, to know who’s gonna drive it, to know what they’re gonna pay, and no one actually asked
that question previously about their use of a taxicab. So, that’s what you’ve gotta do, you’ve gotta look at every
product and service you use and say, “What’s inconvenient about this “and what might make this better, “and by the way, why
do I pay so much money “for this service? “Is there a way that we
can do this for less?” And then you do it in a
collective-community way. One quick thing I want to build on, this sense of community
that was referenced, both from a Lufthansa perspective and also from broader. One of the things that
we’ve introduced in Africa they were so proud of, we did
it with women entrepreneurs in Mali, we’ve done it
across the continent now, is a new thing called Startup Huddle. We actually tested it in the United States under a different brand
called 1 Million Cups. Frankly, when it came to me, I was like, “This is the stupidest
idea I’ve ever heard, “I don’t think were gonna do
this, it’s a waste of time,” and of course, 330 small
towns across America now are doing this within two years; I’m like, “Oh, okay.”
(Rahama chuckles) So, we took it global,
and the concept is this: on a Wednesday morning, an
entrepreneur or one of you stands up in a circle of
people in your community, and quite frankly, in
Africa, sometimes, yes, it is in a very rural,
outdoor environment, sometimes it’s in an accelerator, sometimes it’s in a coffee shop, sometimes it’s a large group of people, but the community comes together, and someboday called it, the other day, Alcoholics Anonymous for entrepreneurs. (panelists laugh) You stand up and you say,
“Here are the challenges “I’m having, here’s the
opportunity I think I’ve got, “let’s go for it,” and for 20 minutes, the entire community has got eyes on you and they’re working on your business idea. Now, let me tell you what that does. Number one, people like
me, who are, unforunately, not right now building
companies, which is my passion, we get excited, ’cause you know what? Today I actually did something useful, I actually directly
helped an entrepreneur. I had three ideas and I
connected them to three people. It was a little bit of
selfish, I felt good; I was on the front line, okay? Secondly, it actually builds community. So, if you don’t actually
have a cirtical densitiy in your community for being able to build any entrepreneurial capacity,
it does it automatically; and thirdly, the reason people come is, yes, they want to help an entrepreneur, but quite frankly, a lot of
them say, “It’s really useful, “’cause I know every Wednesday
morning at eight o’clock, “I can get a free cup of coffee, “and I know I’m gonna see Regina, Martin, “whoever is getting there, I
know I’m gonna get a chance “and I’ve got something I wanna ask them “and I’d rather not do it
on email,” whatever it is. So, people like it ’cause
it’s what they call in America the barbershop contact. You know you’re gonna
be able to touch base with people in your community. So, it’s called Startup
Huddle, and it’s free, but it’s something that
we have a toolkit for and it’s something I
recommend that all of you consider doing, something like
that that builds community and helps one entrepreneur at a time. It does that community and
this sense of making sure that you’re doing it,
this is the great thing about entrepreneurship, it’s a social, collaborative experience now. It’s no longer a lone-man thing, and it’s not about money anymore. It used to be, “Why can’t I
get capital, capital, capital?” I mean, that’s important at certain points when you want to scale, but
it’s really about human capital. It’s about how do I do
this in a collaborative, creative fashion that, A, is more fun, B, is less risk, ’cause I’m
not borrowing someone’s money, necessarily, but I’m
really much more confident about what I’m gonna do when
I do eventually borrow money. – Yeah. So, Roz, I’m gonna ask you
a question about money, (women chuckle) in terms of investment in Africa and how investing in Africa is a win-win for both Africans and the US. – I have so many ways
to answer that question, but I’m gonna make this interactive. You guys get to vote. Do you want a health answer or do you want an agriculture answer? – [Audience] Both! Both! (panelists laugh) – Well, we’ll start with health and we’ll see how much time we have. I thought of the health
one as you were talking about that startup,
which sounds fascinating, I’d love to get involved. We do something similar within IBM. We take people from all over the globe and in different industries at IBM and we lock them in a
room together for a month, and through an online
challenge anyone can apply for, we lock them in a room with the person that submitted the challenge
to solve their problem. So it’s not just that coffee, but a month. So, we’ve got people together with, there’s the African Oncologist Network, I think all of your
countries are part of this, your leading oncologists,
your doctors that treat cancer are part of it, and the
American Cancer Society, which is a global group that just has the word American in it, and smart IBMers, lock them in a room for a month, and said, “How do we address the
cancer-growing epidemic in Africa?” We all know it’s gonna
outpace malaria and AIDS as the number-one cause of death in a few short years, unfortunately. They came up with, the
problem is not only diagnosis, which we could spend hours talking about, but it’s access to treatment. It’s just hard to get the drugs. I lived in Africa, just getting polio
vaccinations was challenging. What they did together was
develop a forecasting tool. They used AI, they used
the African oncologists on the ground that know the situation, they worked with ministers
of health in Uganda, Rwanda, Ethiopia, and it’s gonna expand. Every country’s involved
but we spent focused time in some countries, I
think Kenya’s one of them. They said, “The problem is we don’t know “how many drugs we need. “We can’t forecast. “We know cancer’s
growing, but we don’t know “which drugs can be more responsive.” We got everyone together and
we developed a technology that can address that,
which drugs we need, when we’re gonna need them,
how much we’re gonna need, so that the ministers of
health can do bulk buying, which is what we do in the United States, lower the prices the drugs. It’s not just a US supplier,
but two drug companies, Cipla and Pfizer, have now
gone into two African markets where they weren’t selling
their drugs before, just because they know there’s
gonna be increased buying, at a lower-than-market
price in these countries. So that’s the power of community, putting people together to use technology, use the local expertise
of the oncologists, the miinisters of health,
to solve a problem. That was all IBM investment. What did we get for that? We get a health populace,
we get understanding of how technology can be applied, and where you have health,
you have thriving people who will buy stuff, grow
stuff, start businesses, and buy more IBM producst and services. So, it’s a win-win, and I’m happy, later, to tell you the transporation story. I mean, the agriculture story. – Yeah. Sean? – Let me maybe come in with this question about connecting Africa
and the United States, and maybe a little bit on public policy and how to create the
environment for entrepreneurs in a better way. For P & G, as I said before,
we produce close to consumer, so we actually are
bringing capital to Africa; we manufacture in
Nigeria and South Africa. We’re sharign technology and skills, and we’re building host-country
capacities in manufacturing. It’s essential for us to be able to have what we call free trading lanes. We need to bing in raw materials into our manufacturing facilities, we need to be able to
export finished product to cross national boundaries, so where a public policy comes into play is what we call trade facilitation. We need to have the
ability to thin the borders amonng African countries
so that we can export across all different markets. We weave smaller markets
into larger markets for economies of scale, so
public-policy initiatives, whether it’s COMESA, ECOWAS, SATIC, all those regional economic integrations were enormously valuable
to companies like P & G but I think also to
entrepreneurs in Africa on a small basis, because
they can service customers across national boundaries. Then, just to connect it
back to the United States. As I mentioned before, P & G
has 95,000 employees globally. We have 25,000 in the US, we have 70,000 all around the world, making diapers very close to consumers. What we commmunicate to policy-makers here is that as we’re successful in Africa, it supports US employment,
because one in five P & G jobs here in the US actually
support our overseas operations in international sales. So, we really embody trade
is not a zero-sum game and foreign direct investment
is not a zero-sum game among countries in the world. We take that message to
policy-makers in Africa. – Can I add to that, quickly?
– Sure. – He mentioned ECOWAS, SATIC, COMESA. How many of you know these
regional economic trading blocs? We all know them, yes? On a show of hands, how many of you think they’re very effective? How many of you think they’re
mildly effective? (chuckles) How many of you think they’re
poor in their effectiveness? (chuckles) IBM would like to strenghten them, and we are working with the US government to invest in our research lab in Africa, ’cause we 100% agree that
trade can be more efficient, and when trade is efficient, there can be more intra-Africa trade,
and more global trade, and the intra-Africa trade
creates these entrepreneurs and these business opportunities, and then you’ll come buy our stuff. So, what we’ve done is we’ve
invested in this technology called blockchain, and I
could spend a long time talking about it, but just think about it as the immutable, can’t-change,
transparent, shared ledger that will automate a business process. What’s the number-one
export from Kenya to Europe, anyone know?
– Beans! – Beans? – No, horticulture. Flowers. Do you know how many people it takes and how many processes in shipping flowers from Kenya to Netherlands? How many, you wanna guess? 200 transactions are needed
to ship one thing of flowers. You guys probably know this better than I, I should let P & G talk about this. And 30 different people
have to sign documents stamped Approved. With blockchain, that
can happen in seconds, and we’ve proven that with Mirsk, with the flower company, with the traders, with the customs authority,
we’ve done this with DHS. If you can go home and
have one recommendation, especially if you’re in
the goods and services, but even if you just
wanna grow the economy, broad-based prosperity that
we’ve been talkng about, recommend to your lawmakers that the regional economic trading blocs could be strengthened if
they were to adopt technology like blockchain, and you
guys can actually be leaders. The continental-wide free-trade agreement that most of your nations have now signed can actually come to
fruition if you were to make your own borders mutable to
free trade and quick trade, and you can showcase to the world. Europe is falling apart, right? Their borders are getting
really challenging. Africa has a chance to really lead; we always talk about
leapfrogging, gazelle-jumping, whatever you want. I am passionate about blockchain. I can spend hours doing
it, and I’ll pass this on, but please read about it,
and tell your governments to look into it to invest. We’re already investing
in our research lab. We’re trying to get the
US government to invest. I welcome support and
additional conversation. – I would just add, for
the travel industry, it’s very much the same. Travel is trade; when an
international visitor comes to the United States, for
example, and spends money here, that’s chalked up as an export. Same when international
visitors go to Africa. So, tremendous opportunity as it relates to the same themes: travel facilitation, bringing down barriers, more
stability and more security equals more growth and more opportunity for local employment, local purchasing through the supply chains, et cetera, which obviously has
tremendous economic benefit. I would say on the technology side, we’ve been partnering with
the World Economic Forum on an initiative, and Africa
has been talked about a lot as an opportunity to
leapfrog other continents and other countries, where
we should be using biometrics more for travel. The process by which people
travel is very much the same, and I would be interested
in your thoughts on this, as it was 50 years ago. You’re still getting a paper passport, you’re still going to the embassy, you’re standing in line, you’re
waiting to get an interview, you’re getting your
paper stamped or foiled, you’re taking a trip, in
many cases, to take a trip. It may be far from where you
live to go to a consulate, to go to a particular place. The more that can be done online, the more that can be
done through biometrics, verifying identities
through trusted sources, government sources, your
banking systems, et cetera, there’s a real opportunity. You should be able to
travel based on who you are, and your level of risk
inherent in who you are, not based on the color of your passport. Those are the kinds of initiatives that I think Africa has a
real opportunity to grow, and pan-African travel,
the more that can be done around biometrics and less
reliance on the paper passport, I think is a tremendous growth
opportunity for the continent in terms of fostering
that economic opportunity and growth in jobs. – If I can add to this. I think it’s interesting to see we have two different perspectives here. We have the global one with blockchain; for example, Lufthansa Group
is, as a matter of fact, the first airline to engage with SAP to establish the very
first airline transactions with blockchain, that’s
one side of the story. On the other hand, in Africa, locally, we are leveraging local initiatives to ensure mobile payments,
because obviously, a lot of people live remotely,
they don’t have access with poor infrastructures,
so they have established a lot of ways to ease access to services. Now, we are allowing payment
for plane tickets on mobile, cellphones and stuff. So, it’s on both hands. We have these global initiatives and we are also leveraging
local Afican initiatives; that’s interesting, and
I think that will shape who we do business in
Africa, also, in the future by combining whatever is coming from so-called developed countries and this amazing, booming technology that is truly African. – Yeah, that’s excellent. Regina, I wanted to bring you in on this, because you’re a tech entrepreneur. So, from your perspective,
and some of the challenges that you’ve had scaling your business, and the coding that you’re
training the next generation of Ghanaian youth to be
involved in this process, whataare your thoughts
in terms of what advice would you give to policymakers? What types of partnerships do you look for when it comes to your business, and what is the vision that you have? – Okay, I’m gonna speak first
to advice to policymakers, because I’m big on the
discussion on policy and changing policy. I think the first has to
be broad-based education on what really is technology,
because what we get a lot of is whenever I go out, we operate
in Ghana and Burkina Faso, and all the different
markets, when you’re talking about coding, and blockchain,
and augmented intelligence and all of that, some
people nod their heads, but then when you leave,
then they ask the person next to you, “What were they saying? “What does that mean?”
(panelists chuckle) Let me give an example. Ghana started this
digital addressing system, and they invested a lot of money, and now, they are like, they’ll
have to do more marketing, because you have to get
people to understand. There was a survey that was
conducted on mobile money, and you have some people saying they don’t really
understand how to use it. So, there needs to be more education to get the populace, not
only the literate and few, but everybody, to really understand, from your grandmother in the village to your PhD students, the intrinsic value of what technology is,
why it’s important today, so then, when policy is
passed, everybody is onboard, so you don’t just have a
few people understanding all the technical stuff, and
then the majority of the people just sitting around thinking, “Oh, okay, “what’s going on here?” In terms of the challenges, there are several different
things that happen. I think the first one, for me, is being in a male-dominated space,
and I want to speak to that, because it was a real challenge, whereby, as a female in the tech space, you know you’re gonna
face all kinds of things, so you have to develop tough
skin and change the narrative. I’m passionate about pushing women, and our first project was
called Tech Needs Girls. It was a mentorship program
where we were training girls from six to 18 on how to code
and create tech businesses, and we’ve evolved that now,
where we ran another program called Women and Digital
Skills, where we worked with women from the informal sector. So, we can literally take a woman that has never seen a computer,
and teach her to code, teach her to build a website,
and one of the things that happened with that
project is, now we have… We have head porters in the market, right? They are called kaya yoo,
and they carry these things on their head, and they
spend the whole day with their kids on their back, or they put their kids in the market, and it’s not the best safe spaces. These women who have now graduated from the Women and Digital Skills program worked with another
organization to use Minecraft to teach market children
how to create safe spaces. They’re gonna actually
develop these spaces, and it’s been amazing. So, I would love more
public-private partnerships, because that’s how you scale innovation. Another challenge is mindset, and we are working towards that. That’s why we start early,
and getting young Africans to really see their potential to take themselves out of their community, and know that just because
your mother was a fishmonger and her grandmother was a fishmonger doesn’t mean you’re
going to be a fishmonger. You can be anything you want to be, and we’re also making sure
that we are empowering them, not only with the technical
skills, but also soft skills, because if you have a technical skill, you should be able to have either some leadership qualities,
entrepreneurial qualities. The final thing that I’ll
speak to with challenges is, I mean, different things happen when you look within certain countries. I remember I woke up one morning, withholding tax had gone up. You have to keep innovating as
young African entrepreneurs, because so many things can change. Each time there’s change
in political parties, they bring new policies, it affects so many different things. So, you must be thinking on your toes. You never rest and be like,
“Okay, this is working,” because you can have a system in place and then change in government
or change in policy can transform things and
make things different. So, there are all those
different challenges, but I feel like you always
have to stay resilient and think, “How can I jump this hurdle? “How can I go around this block? “How can I innovate within this space?” So, we are constantly growing and constantly making sure
that we’re speaking, also, to policy, so that it gets better for all the other entrepreneurs
that will come in the space. – That’s fantastic. – Can I add on that? Two quick things, ’cause
I know we wanna open up to the floor, but for the
fellows, first of all, I really want to emphasize this, to echo this statement about blockchain. (Roslyn chuckles) – I’m supporting you, thank you. – Well, I think it’s really important. Funny enough, all of our global
blockchain work we’re doing, we’re actually doing it in
the context of our research and analyzing our
performance of interventions to support entrepreneurs. We’re doing it in the context of our ecosystem-performance management, but we’re basing it all,
actually, funny enough, from projects that we’re doing in Africa. But the point is that
part of the challenge of the opportunity that you
have at being exponential, ’cause all the really
exciting environments are gonna be, potentially,
a little bit more long-term, but you’ve got the
opportunity to stand out above everybody else if
you can really make sure that you really do understand
what this technology is. Now, it’s so transparent around the world, this information is free; it’s not only these
awesome companies up here that care about building communities and offering interventions and programs to make it easier for you, but it’s also all the universities. It’s been more than 10 years since MIT put all of its curriculum online and open to free, and the same’s true with most of the major
universities in the world, not to mention the general
transparency of the internet. So you can teach yourself
about this stuff. There’s endless programs now, but what you can do that none of us, well, I’ll speak for myself,
that I can’t do up here, is understand how that could
be applied and become relevant to a proclem that you’re
trying to solve in Africa. You heard one about the difficulty that actually we face as an
international organization. We have a global meeting every year called the Global
Entrepreneurship Congress. We bring a delegation of 100
people from all 170 countries that we operate in into one location. We never have visa
issues except in Africa, and it’s always because, “Well,
I had to go across border “into the consulate to get this,” and these are awesome people, but they’re having it
incredibly difficult. So, whether it’s that
problem that was brought up, or whether it’s other issues, you’re gonna see those problems locally, that we can’t necessarily see. The other quick thing I wanna emphasize, and this is really important:
if you’re an entrepreneur and you’re trying to create a new company, you can’t do it unless you’re
also following public policy. Now, 10 years ago, in
the entrepreneur space, we used to say, although
I also used to work on Capitol Hill, worked on
the government side of things, but my point is, we used to say, “You know what, the
government’s kind of irrelevant “to us entrepreneurs.” Californian tech guys were always like, “We wanna secede from the Union, “we don’t care about Washington, DC, “it’s kind of irrelevant,
there’s a couple of guys “that got a public-affairs office there.” Now, as you see people
like you with the potential to disrupt traditional industries, you’re creating a massive
number of regulatory headaches for government, and government has no idea how to deal with it. In our world, Google, for
example, created something called Google for Entrepreneurs
in the last fuve years, that’s where all their
investments have been. They’ve shifted it, actually,
to their Washington office where they’re hiring like
crazy, ’cause they need people that can work side-by-side
in a symbiotic relationship with government, to
figure out how do we deal with the regulatory headaches
that are getting created by tech entrepreneurs, whether
or not that’s in blockchain or new applications in
AI, or whether it be just simply digital
disruption of business models. But I would just tell you,
I think the relationship you have with government,
I just wanna emphasize what Regina was saying, is
so important, and in fact, at GEN, I was very proud, actually, Tony Olumelu, from
Nigeria, and I co-chaired something for President
Obama called the Global, gosh, I can’t remember
what you called it now. It was Global Entrepreneurship Commission. We were involved in doing this global entrepreneurship
summit every year for the last 10 years,
and one of the things that came out of that is
we created a ministerial for startup and scale-up policymaking. This is just for policies. Sadly, the United States is
no longer involved in it, but quite frankly, we’ve
got 90 other governments around the world that are leading it. The reason that formed
is all those ministers who you said, indeed, I asked them all, “How many of you, really,
if I asked you to stand up “and give me a 60-second
explanation of what blockchain is “and an application of what it could do,” almost none of them could;
I knew one of them could, so he stood up and did
it, but the point is, I think you’ve got the potential, frankly, to be the educators. They want to know you more
than you need to know them, to be honest with you. Your government needs you
more than you need them, and you should leverage that. You should become a source of knowledge; you should become, actually,
the people they’re wanting to meet with, rather than you
wanting to meet with them, and I certainly think in our experience in governments in Africa,
there is a tremendous power that you hold as people that have more sometimes time, but also,
the freedom intellectually, but also the generational
aptitude to be able to adapt to these kinds of new
technologies and opportunities, because they’re gonna be following you. It’s a new symbiotic relationship, it’s no longer a hierarchical thing of government controls everything. They’re just another actor at
the table trying to figure out how do we figure out new
ways of solving problems. – Okay, go ahead. – I just wanted to make
one point to partnerships, especially with global organizations, and to demonstrate why
that is of immense value to entrepreneurs on the continent, because it’s an exchange, right, and you’ll benefit from expertise, from people with different perspectives bringing different things to the table. We have been fortunate to work
with different global brands like SAP, MTN, General Electric. I just came from a program
with Tiger Woods Foundation and they are looking to go international, and those partnerships
help, because they helped us in shaping and doing
things on the continent, they helped us in also
growing and understanding how to be more global,
even though we are local. So, as we are starting
local, we’re thinking global. All those different partnerships come in, add value to aAfrican entrepreneurs. I just wanted to point out
that you should be open to those kinds of partnerships, and see how you work together. As you are solving problems
locally, you are thinking about scaling globally. – That’s fantastic. So, Christophe, you will
have the last question before we open it up for Q & A. Lufthansa has supported and
spornsored the YALI program and it’s a sign of your commitment to advancing issues on the continent. Could you talk to us a little bit more about that commitment?
– Sure. Maybe putting things in perspective first, it’s interesting to see
that US/Canada to Africa has been growing by 14% this
year compared to last year. Africa is definitely a booming market. Together with United and Air Canada, we represent 20% marketshare there, so we certainly have a commitment, and that’s something we’ve been realizing over the last 12 months, that, yeah, we position ourselves
as Africa specialists or Africa experts, so to speak, then at some point, you
realize you have to define what it means, truly, beyond
your duties as an airline. That’s very much what Brussels
Airlines first initiated, and now we are bringing all
the Lufthansa Group carriers together into that reflection process. So, instead of having that
reflection process internal only, we started engaging external parties, starting with the African
ambassadors to the United Nations; I’m personally based in New York, so they are very close to me, and we engaged them into a debate: what Brussels Aielines, or
the Lufthansa Group together, as a private operator, could
do to make a difference, and really walk the talk when
we say we are close to Africa, we have Africa as part of our DNA. The outcome of that discussion
was that whatever we do, we have to be consistent,
and we have to support present and future
economic growth in Africa. It can be done in different ways. First of all, as a private operator that is so deeply engaged into Africa, we have to make sure we leverage
every single opportunity across the organization. That’s a massive one; for
Lufthansa Group altogether, that’s 120,000 employees. We have to make sure that
each and every one of us really, genuinely engage with Africa in one way or the other. So, we are now setting
up new exchange programs where we send people from North America, from Europe, to Africa,
and the other way ’round, participating to temporary
missions to get to know better their local African colleagues
and the other way around, understand different cultural
environments, challenges, problems, solutions very often too, and that’s one way. Second of all, externally, is to see how we can really make a difference. We always say, as an airline,
we bring people together, so it’s easy, we can
transport them from A to B. That’s something we keep
going and we keep doing. I just mentioned the massive
growth we have to Africa, 50% of our passengers on
Brussles Airlines actually going to Africa, so we need
to keep growing as well. Recently, we decided to
relocate our sales headquarters in Brussels for the
entire Africa continent, because we want to leverage the
Brussels Airlines expertise, 90-year presence in
Africa, we want to leverage the highly-engaged local
staff we have across Africa, we want to better harmonize our products, we want to better serve the
continent to make travel easy. But that’s part of our
duties as an airline, so beyond that, we want
to really establish the Lufthansa group as an active player in supporting that economic growth. We see that the population
is among the fastest growing, it’s among the youngest,
it’s truly innovative, truly creative; we have to showcase this. We can showcase this through our product, so now we’re reflecting in ways
of showcasing African food, African art, African
fashion, African technology, across everything we do
in the Lufthansa Group on our flights to and from Africa, so you will see more and
more that African flavor, aFrican touch, on our flights. We give more and more
opportunities to our local staff to become cabin attendants
and really be there onboard to serve the African community,
speaking the right language at the right time with the right touch. I think that’s very important,
and that’s also part of the women empowerment that
we are very much involved into in the Lufthansa Group, and also, we are seeking partnerships with public-private organizations to support exchange, and YALI
is the perfect fit for that, because on the one-hand
side, currently, as we do, we’re bringing students, we’re bringing young African leaders from
all over Africa to the US. That gives them the opportunity to complement their skill sets, that gives them the opportunity
to expose their ideas, to find potential investors; that’s how we can really
support and go further than just transport them from A to B. So, we are seeking every opportunity to engage into long-term partnership with academic organizations,
diplomatic representations, to make sure we are very
consistent with the market needs, the country needs. On the other-hand side,
that’s for the future years, with YALI and IREX, hopefully,
we want to further engage in connecting the diaspora
with the mother continent. The more ideal interact
with the diaspora members, and the more positively
surprised to see how successful a lot of them are, be it
artists, entrepreneurs, whatever, philanthropists,
it’s time for them to give back to their country of origins. A lot of them want to do
so, but they don’t know how to do it. So, we are, for example, engaging now with the Liberian consulates
of Atlanta, Washington, and New York, to really establish
a comprehensive initiative to sustain that type of approach, and we are doing the same with Ghana, with the embassy of Ghana
in the US and Canada. Ghana is a gateway to Africa. A lot of diaspora members
want to get started in Ghana and spread the word through the continent, but I think there is huge
opportunity to share experience, to share expertise,
transfer it, give back, invest, and really support Africans in realizing their full potential. That’s very much our core approach and that’s why we are so
happy to be a partner of IREX for the years to come. – No, that’s fantastic, thank you. Wow, that was a lot! (chuckles) It’s your turn. Do we have questions? Oh, okay. (panelists chuckle) I believe we have mics,
and we’ll start over here with this young lady,
I believe, right here? I can’t see very well. – Thank you so much. My question is to the president of the Global Entrepreneurship Network. You just menitoned about
your campus in South Africa, and I want to ask, because most of us here are into incubators, accelerators, and entrepreneurship centers. So, with your campus, what
new methods of training or new systems are you bringing in to promote entrepreneurship in Africa, and I’m sure that you
carried out some studies to observe what current
institutions are doing in Africa to promote entrepreneurship. What did you observe that
we are not doing right, and what do you plan on improving on? Lastly, how can we build
strong collaborations between the YALI network members
here and your institution, because you mentioned the
Global Entrepreneurship Week, which my organization commemorated
it for about five years in consecutve times, but
we have not had any contact with your organization; thank you. – Thank you. And question over here,
the lady in maroon? – Thank you so much for your presentation. I’m Faye Ronch, I’m from Madagascar. I work for the Economic
Development Board of Madagascar in tourism and infrastructure,
and my question goes for her. Do you have any projects,
any pipelines in Madagascar, and would you love to come there? (Roslyn chuckles) Because we have identified beautiful sites and local partnership,
and we need 10,000 rooms in hotel-building in Madagascar, and do you want to come
there, that’s my question. (panelists laugh) – That’s the best question I
think we’re gonna get all day. (panelists laugh) The gentleman in yellow. Sorry, I’m just calling
you guys out by your color. – Thank you very much;
my name is Coulay Msiba, I’m from Guinea. My question is about all the panelists. During the six weeks I’ve
spent here in America, I’ve noticed that all of
the American investors are highly interested in
English-speaking countries, like South Africa, Ghana,
or Kenya, or the like. I want to know, especially,
what do you think as special in those English-speaking countries that French-speaking countries do not have in order to attract American investors. (audience cheers and applauds) (panelists laugh) – Okay. This lady in red over here. – Good morning everyone, my name is Ayana, I’m from South Africa. I’m so delighted to see Mr. Ortmans here. He may not recall, but I was with him for the Global Entrepreneurship Congress with Kizito Kuchungo, as
well as our now-current head of state, Cyril Ramaphosa. I was also there at the
launch of 22 on Sloane, with himself and Richard Branson as well. I just would like to attest
to the wonderful work that’s being done there. I also would like to speak a little bit, without trying to make
myself the spokesperson of 22 on Sloane, about the
diversity that’s there; it’s not just a hub for South Africans, we’ve seen a mixed range
of people that are there. We’ve seen holistic
development for entrepreneurs. There is a gym that’s there,
there’s a place for your kids to play, there’s a shower
room, there’s a prayer room, there’s all the things
that entrepreneurs need, which ties into my
question, because sometimes, we think it’s just about the training on how to handle money,
which is important. Sometimes we think it’s about training on how to conduct yourself professionally; that is equally important, but we forget about the holistic development
of the entrepreneur. Lots of people quit their
jobs to be entrepreneurs. Some of them, you are
women, and you need someone to look after your kids, so you need a hub that is able to look after your youngsters when you are there, and
this one is for men as well. So, I love the holistic
perspective of that hub and I think that incubator
is different because of that. But my question to you is
not just about startup, it’s about scaleability
and sustainability. We have a new trend: almost
every person who is unemployed will say, “I’m an entrepreneur.” So I want to know,
starting up is one thing, it’s fantastic, we get excited,
we give ourselves the title of CEO, but it’s hard to
stay in your current business as an entrepreneur. How do we fix that problem
so we don’t just start but we have five-, six-, seven-, 10-year-running organizations
that we can pass on to our children and our
children’s children as well? Thank you. – Okay, one more question for this round. The gentleman in the
striped shirt right here. – Thank you very much. My name is Samuel Fire
Johnson, I’m from Liberia. I wanna say thanks to the panelists, and a candid admission, as a humanitarian, a professional studies a professional; with the increased polished
conversations on trade and entrepreneurship,
sometimes I’m tempted to think maybe I should try that area. (panelists chuckle) Let me say thanks to Regina
for the work you are doing with Soronko Solutions,
impacting the lives of Africans. You listed three challenges: being placed in a male-dominated space, mindset, as well as something else,
and I think these are for onward I’ll call unfair competition. So, I want to know what
has been your own role in terms of robust advocacy to ensure that government policies will
provide an able environment for local entrepreneurs. Thank you. – Okay, we’re going to start. The gentleman in yellow, I think your English-French question, I think it’s because of Ghana jollof. I think that’s why. (panelists laugh) The first question goes to you, Jonathan, regarding the campus in
South Africa, 22 on Sloane, and how your methods are different in terms of your training intiaitves, and what are the challenges you’re seeing and what are the unique solutions the campus is bringing. – Great. Well, thanks for the question; obviously, it’s an easy question for us ’cause we’re so excited about it. A couple of things I should mention. I think this got born
in the right culture. First of all, yes, we had
our congress in Johannesburg, and I’m a big fan of if
we’re gonna do an event, I wanna know exactly what
we’re gonna achieve out of it, and we have to have the
legacy, outputs, impact. So when we sat down,
actually, on the last day, all of the international community said, “Great, we’re leaving the facility, “we’re off to go and spend
time in the shared workspaces “around Jo’burg,” and quite
frankly, they weren’t there. So, in March of last year,
we identified a need. Our managing director, Kozito, was able to pull together a team,
and within nine months, I was standing there with Richard Branson, and we were opening the
10,000-square-meter campus. That is a great example in itself of entrepreneurial
prowess, and I’ll tell you the reason why, because
it was African-born. It was great that we were able to help, I’m delighted to get people
like Richard Branson involved that we’ve had a long-term
relationship with, but the point is, it was
ultimately an African initiative. But most importantly, every
reporter turned to me and said, “So, what’s different about
this to everything else, “’cause I’m sure this
is government-funded.” I said, “Well, look up at that wall, “:do you see any government
brands on there?” Not a single government. We have a great relationship
with President Ramaphosa and he’s very excited about this, and the minister, Minister
Zulu, from that country, came, and all the other, they
came to the opening and they were like, “We didn’t
know anything about this!” So that was the exciting thing for me, is that it was an entrepreneurial
venture unto itself. That has meant that it was driven by need. So, a few specific things,
you can go to the website, 22onsloane, to look for details, but yes, some of the things you kindly mentioned, it’s obviously got some great things that we thought were important,
which is 24-hour security and parking, and putting
it in the right place, and giving women the opportunity
to bring in their children, and giving the ability for
people to be able to work at all hours of the day
and the night in teams. The other key thing
that we did was we went to the community; we discovered
that one of the successes of entrepreneurial ecosystems
is what we call density. You’ve got to try to get
everybody in the same place, ’cause it’s spread out all
over, you’re not getting that wondreful intersection
of discplines and cultures that create innovation. So we went to the major
people, like, actually, Richard Branson with his
Branson Center and other things, and said, “How is it here?” So when everybody comes in
here, we’re automatically already here, and that
was a critical thing to be able to do like some of
the other service providers. But I think the critical
thing when it was launched is that it’s about Africa. Yes, it’s about Franco-Africa, it’s around Africa as a whole. There was a clear message around everybody that put that together,
that we are gonna actually market this outside of South Africa, and we’re gonna make it affordable, so it’s only approximately $!00 a month to be able to be house as an entrepreneur, and my gosh, did we
realize there was demand. There was 8,000 applications
for the first 80 spots on the campus. But what are we doing differently? Well, the most important thing we’re doing is we’re trying to look
at the interventions and the programs, and
the tools and techniques from all the 170 countries,
that are working. A lot of people got a lot of ideas, and we basically also
turned around and say, if it’s not having an
impact, let’s shut it down, because a lot of people
like to start things and they keep them going to, frankly, sometimes keep themselves
emplyed, but the point is, we’re like, hey, look, if
this isn’t doing results, take your great talents
and your experience and let’s recycle it and
work it into another progrma. So, that’s about 22 on Sloane. What’s Africa doing? I think the other part
of the question on that was what’s Africa doing well? I think one of the things
we’ve seen is the willingness to be open to foreigners
coming in and living in Africa, and bringing their
networks, their capital, but also their knowledge. This is something we learned
in Chile with Startup Chile. They actually did a program, I was there for the first 10 people, but they were individually targeted, people with experience
building companies around AI or whatever, and actually,
to have them come and live side-by-side with you, so it’s not like a parachute
in and give a speech, or hang out for a week,
it’s like, come and live in the community and really understand that many of these panelists
obviously have done, and I think that’s really helping
in some of the communities that are succeeding, because
it’s ideally the diaspora but not always the diaspora. So, happy to talk with you
afterwards about more specifics in the interest of time,
but can I quickly address this Franco-Africa thing?
– Yeah. – Can I just tell you,
I grew up in England, and one of the most remarkable
things that I discovered when I moved to the United States, I’m a dual citizen, was
I just couldn’t believe the poor foreign-language
skills of Americans. (panelists laugh) Growing up in Europe,
almost everybody I knew, we had at least a couple of languages. I, as a child, was told you did French, but I have to say, the biggest
reason they’re not doing it is that most foreign
investors find it hard enough to understand the value
proposition of an investment in a startup in Africa in the first place, which is why most of the
individuals that I work with, they’re gonna invest in a fund, or we’ve got a handful of individuals, or, I invest in something,
but I did it because frankly, Steve Case called me up
and said, “Let’s do this “with X, Y, and Z, and I
think here’s the reason “why we should do it.” People are very nervous about it, but they’re especially nervous if they don’t speak the language. So, shame on us, it’s shame on us. And the solution is, by the
way, it’s not an American story anymore, please take Silicon
Valley out of your heads! That’s not where you should be going, you’re not investor-ready
for Silicon Valley, but go, for example, to Quebec, Montreal. Go to Paris. This is where the investment opportunity; I mean, Mr. Macron has launched
a massive-grade initiative in Africa that GEN’s involved
in, but it’s all driven out of Paris. So, I would say shame on
us for doing more investing in Franco-African opportunities, but quite frankly, it’s because
most investors would say they’re just ill-equipped,
and somebody else may have a more sophisticated answer, but I think if you’re not getting the
investment from Americans, then you should go to
French-speaking countries and seek that. – Yeah. So, Melissa, is Marriott
in Madagascar on the way? – We are not in Madagascar;
I looked at our pipeline, I have my little cheat sheet here because it’s hard to keep track. We don’t have a pipeline
hotel in Madagascar. I’m not in charge of
development for the continent, our folks that are are there,
so I would be more than happy to connect you, ’cause I
think your story is one that’s replicable, as I mentioned, just the tremendous demand for hotels. One intersteting statistic
that I would throw out is 1.3 international trips, excuse me, 1.3 billion, I forgot
the important word there, international trips were taken last year. That’s growing to nearly
two billion trips by 2030. That growth is not because more
Americans and more Europeans are traveling, it’s because
more Africans are traveling, and rising middle classes in Asia as well. So, the tremendous growth
potential for Africa remains and I think is gonna be
there for a long time, so Madagascar should absolutely
be on the radar screen for companies like us
that are investing locally and partnering with local people
to make those investments. So, however the process
works, I would love to get connected, and I don’t
suppose our folks would let me come on the trip, but i
will beg that they do. (chuckles)
– And I wanna come too. – Good, we’ll all go. – So, does anyone else
wanna take on the question of Anglo/Franco?
– Yes, I would love to. (panelists chuckle) – I think that’s a very
interesting issue or thing, and I fully agree with you, it’s all about where you are targeting
your potential investors. We are very big in Canada
as well, and obviously, Quebec is 100% all about
French-speaking countries, and Toronto, right next
door, is all about Uganda. So, it’s very funny, but
I think part of the issue is also the size of the diaspora and the dynamism of the people
representing your countries here in the United States. If I go to some pan-African event, the interlocutors will be
either Ghanaian or Nigerian. So it’s very, very
difficult to engage or find the proper representatives or counterpart from Burkina Faso, from Mali, from other French-speaking countries, and when we do so, we really
engage into these partnerships, because you have, in the
diaspora here, amazing people that really advocate for you countries and do an amazing job, so I would be happy to connect with you
and see what we can do, but we are already engaged
into supporting countries like Burkina Faso, Senegal, Cote d’Ivoire, and so on and so forth. You have to work with
people who are interested in French-speaking countries,
who are already established in French-speaking countries,
for which the French language is not a barrier anymore,
and we can certainly assist you there. – The only thing that I
would add is that Roz and I are actually on the
President’s Advisory Council on Doing Business in Africa,
and we recently came back from a fact-finding mission that was led by the Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, and teams from the
State Department, USAID, the Millennium Challenge Corporation, and one of the countries we
went to was Cote d’Ivoire, and Cote d’Ivoire is listed
as the fastest-growing economy in Africa, so it might seem
like the francophone countries are not getting attention, but they’re definitely on the radar, and if you wanna learn more
about the work we’re doing on the advisory council, you
can go to The next question was about scaling: how do you help entrepreneurs
scale their businesses, and anyone on the panel
can take on this question. – Well, maybe I’ll venture in, and jump in and connect it to something
else I heard in a question, which is how do you
entrepreneurs get the skills in order to be successful? I had an experience here in Washington where I interacted with a US senator, the head of a country, Costa Rica, and then an advisor to President Juncker for the EU Commission, and
all three of those people had worked for Proctor & Gamble. It reminds me how lots of people who work for Proctor & Gamble, they may spend their whole lives there,
but they get trained there and they can effectively spin off from a company like Proctor & Gamble, and if they have the
entrepreneurial spirit, they can gain the rest
of the knowledge skills to help launch their own business. So, I think you definitely wanna look at building out your skill
sets while you’re young, try to get into a company
that will train you so that you can harvest that training, contribute to the company,
but then buld yourself so that you’re in a position two or three years down the raod. And I think all of us need
to support risk-taking, because if you live in a
risk-averse environment, then we’re not gonna have
enough entrepreneurs. – Yeah. And Regina, the question about advocacy and women in technology. – So, on Monday, we had Masai speak about how we should keep
speaking about women and empowering women; I
couldn’t echo that more. For us, it’s about
demonstrating that women can. So, instead of just
saying, “Add some women “for the gender balance,
or just because it’s nice,” (chuckles) we want equity,
we want women to have a level playing field, so it’s
all about showing examples, showing stories, showing
role models of women that have done it,
women that are doing it, and women that keep going
against insurmountable odds. I wanted to also speak to
the question on burnout and how do you sustain
yourself as an entrepreneur. You start this journey, and
you are running top speed, you are just going, going, going, going, and you will reach a point
where you have run out of even a fresh outlook
into your business, because you’re spending so much time just hitting at it hard. What I have found is apart from
just finding time for self, which is very important, you
also have to empower your team to understand the vision,
’cause what I discovered with African entrepreneurs, or
even upcoming entrepreneurs, is the entrepreneur takes
so much on yourself, it’s like you are the CEO, the
accountant, the receptionist, the graphic, and you feel
like nobody’s going to do it like you, so it’s like you
are micromanaging everything. You burn out. (chuckles) So, you must learn to trust your team, find the right people. There will be some mistakes, it’s fine, but find the right people, and
make sure that you give them a sense of ownership into the business, so that it’s not just you. You have the vision,
but you must find people that carry that vision. So, don’t take everything upon yourselves, you will not survive that way. Once you have things like
family and all of that; as a mother and a wife,
wearing three hats, sometimes I’m like, okay,
mother, wife, entrepreneur. (panelists chuckle)
It’s all over the place. – Just pick one. – Exactly (laughs) And I’m barely surviving,
barely, barely, barely. So, you just have to alawys make sure that you find time for self,
and know that it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Be strategic, and try
and sustain yourself, because there’s a lot of
celebration in the beginning, but people don’t really
follow up after some time and say, “Where is that
startup that we celebrated “in the beginning?” There’s not so much for after you start. There’s a lot of accelerators, incubators, to get you to start, but
once you are in there, then you see that the
support is less, less, less, less, less, so you
have to really find out how to stand on your own,
and then empower your team so that you can scale and grow. – No, that’s fantastic. Jonathan? – I’ll just very quickly,
build on that point and on Sean’s point, ’cause
this question about scale-up is really important. One of you stood up and said, look, a lot of us call ourselves the
CEO and we don’t sustain it. One of the things that most
people don’t think about is actually privately,
backstage, I’ve often been with heads of state that
walked out and said, “We need more entrepreneurship, jobs, “and economic growth,
and this is gonna help,” and then backstage, I’m saying, “What? “What’s really passionate?” And they say, “You know
the great thing about it is “I’ve never met a single
person from a corporatin “that says that they would
not want to hire someone “who’s gone through that experience “of trying to create
something out of nothing, “of forming of a team, of taking risk, “of understanding what it
means to have the initiative, “and do all those jobs that
Regina was just talking about.” So, one of the things that
people don’t think about is that even though
you’re young and we think that you’re gonna become
an entrepreneur now, and you’re gonna do it in a garage, that’s actually not the way it happens. The average age last year of
a US-born tech entrepreneur was 39 years old, and the
reason is because people start, but then often, they go
to get unique knowledge from an industry. So, to build on Sean’s point,
get that startup experience, work out what you don’t know,
what are the pains and things, then go work for somebody
else in that industry and understand how that
industry’s gonna work, and then come back and disrupt
them, and take them over. (panelists chuckle) No, don’t take them over. (panelists laugh) Come back and disrupt and be
part of Marriott being part of the future of creating a
great experience for everybody. No, but I think that’s one
of the things we forget. As entrepreneurship advocates,
we should encourage you also to work in companies
where you’re gonna develop that knowledge and be
able to take it further. – Perfect. One last word, Roz? – I was gonna say, I ran my
own business for four years and I don’t talk about it so much, ’cause I kinda feel like I
got burned out, as a woman, but that’s part of the reason
why probably IBM hired me and I’ve been so
successful, so, well said. – This was a fantastic conversation. Really quickly, we have
to end, unfortunately, we can’t take any more questions, but we talked about so
many different things, I just wanna highlight a couple of things. If you are an entrepreneur,
if you are a young leader, you have to be engaged on policy issues. Sometimes we try to step
away from the policy side but this panel definitely,
on several occasions, said be engaged in the policy process, engage with your governments. Blockchain, blockchain,
blockchain, blockchain. (panelists chuckle) The other thing is, people are important, if not more important, than money. People are the gateway to getting access to the skills, the
resources, the partnerships that you will need to be successful, even if you’re not an entrepreneur, in whatever career and whatever
field that you’re doing. Perception is an issue when
it comes to the countries you all represent, so learn
how to tell your story, and don’t be afraid to
put yourself out there and tell that story. And then, of course, with Regina’s example and what she said so brilliantly, which is you can be anything. Just because you come
from a history, you said, of fishmongers or farmers, it doesn’t mean that’s the only ending to your story. Every single one of you
who are in this room, I know you’ve worked so hard
to be where you are today, and you’ve had to overcome
so many challenges, so this is one step in a
long, marathon journey. So, thank you so much. Give a warm thank you to the panelists, who did a fantastic job.
(audience applauds) (panelists laugh) – Thank you to all of our
speakers this morning. Please join us for lunch
in the Palladium, Diplomat, and Empire rooms. As a reminder, the summit hashtags are #YALI2018 and #MyMandelaLegacy. (woman singing) (lively, uptempo Afropop music)

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