The role played by digital technology in the development of Africa’s economy will take centre stage at the Innovation Summit Africa that will take place in Nairobi, Kenya on March 6, according to the organisers.
The event, hosted by The Economist Events, will bring together players and stakeholders in Africa’s digital space including Nailab chief executive officer, Sam Gichuru, Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) secretary general Sindiso Ngwenya and BidhaaSasa founder David Disch, to mention a few.
Hundreds of participants from different African countries are expected to convene at Nairobi’s Radisson Blu, most of whom are from big technology companies like Microsoft 4Afrika, Siemens, Mashable, Mobius Motors, and Andela, among others.
The meeting, whose theme is ‘Digital Transformation for Accelerated Growth,’ seeks to explain the current gaps in Africa’s development, particularly in key areas such as finance and telecommunications, and explore how the continent can use digital technologies to reshape its businesses and societies.
“The Innovation Summit will look at the incredible impact that new technologies and business models are having on Africa,” Jonathan Rosenthal, the Africa editor of The Economist said in a statement.
The summit will also feature presentations by BitPesa chief executive officer Elizabeth Rossiello, Mashable chief data scientist Haile Owusu, International Finance Corporation Africa head of fintech Rostan Schwab and Afrotech director Jonathan Ledgard.
Louis Antoine Muhire, the founder and chief executive officer of Mergims, a Rwanda-based fintech start-up, which seeks to simplify online payment for merchants across Africa, will also speak at the event.
Participants will discuss a wide range of topics ranging from the rise of artificial intelligence (AI), the potential of fintech services and how Africa’s youth employment problem can be addressed through digital technology.
“The event brings together an extraordinary group of people to talk about how African tech startups are going to power economic growth and contribute to solving some of the continent’s most pressing problems,” Rosenthal noted.
Muhire told Sunday Times that since the summit seeks solutions on why innovation is slowing in Africa, it will be an essential stage for different players in the ecosystem to deliberate on how to revive and promote Africa based innovations.
“There is a need for Africans to own the innovation. The summit will be an important platform towards the direction of addressing what’s limiting the growth of innovation and technology,” he said.
The Economist Events hosts over 80 events annually in over 30 countries on topics that convene world-class thought leaders on a range of strategic business issues.