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The planned Africa House is to be the central point of Africa and African businesses during the World Economic Forum in Davos.

In collaboration with Ringier AG and rainbow infinite, Pulse (https:/bit.ly/3aTFR8z) hosted the Swiss-African Business Roundtable at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in the ETH Pavilion in Davos, Switzerland. The annual World Economic Forum Summit in Davos brings together world leaders to discuss global policies, national priorities, and business. The Roundtable event focused on connecting Swiss & African businesses, discussing topics of common interest in Swiss-African business relations and enhancing the visibility of African & African businesses at the World Economic Forum.

Dr. Patrick Njoroge, Governor, Central Bank of Kenya, highlighted the need for more engagement on African issues during the WEF in Davos, addressing the audience in his presentation “Africa in the World, Today and Tomorrow.” The group of 30 + CEOs, entrepreneurs and senior executives from Africa and Switzerland ultimately had a common interest in launching the’ Africa House’ for the WEF Annual Meeting from 2021. Addressing the participants, Ringier AG CEO & Managing Partner, Marc Walder said “This event was organised to raise awareness with stakeholders on initiatives that are crucial to sustainably doing business in Africa. We have a big platform to build something substantial here, to showcase the opportunities available in Africa at the World Economic Forum”. Member of the Board of Ringier Africa AG and representative of Pulse Leonard Stiegeler further indicated that in his remarks, in which he shared the need for stakeholders to come together to shine the global spotlight on business opportunities in Africa. “The outlook for business opportunities in Africa is positive and its potential for growth is truly endless. African business is the future – together we can move it to the forefront of global discussions”, Stiegeler added. During the World Economic Forum in Davos, the planned Africa House will be the hub of Africa and African businesses-providing space for interaction, conferences, and exhibits for international business leaders who want to communicate with representatives from the continent.

This need for a centralized African platform resonated with participants: “Brand South Africa has had its own pavilion at WEF in Davos for many years. Consolidating efforts with other African stakeholders for a joint presence in Davos is a novel idea to strengthen our message as a region.”, said Thulisile Manzini, acting CEO of Brand South Africa. Many company representatives were present including Oscar Onyema, CEO, Nigerian Stock Exchange; Verena Utzinger, President, Swiss-African Business Circle; Karim El Chiaty, Vice Chairman, Travco Group; Khaya Gobodo, MD Wealth and Investments, Old Mutual; Rainer-Marc Frey, Vice Chairman, Lonrho; Ifeyinwa Ugochukwu, CEO, Tony Elumelu Foundation; Charlene Chen, Director, Aza; Lutz Hegemann, COO Global Health, Novartis; Monika Puri, Head, Industrial Relations – Global Access, Roche; Sola Yomi-Ajayi, country CEO, United Bank for Africa Plc. USA and António Nunes, CEO, Angola Cables. Africa House 2021 will provide a dedicated platform for Africa at the WEF annual meeting, filling a gap that exists for African participants. “A number of African executives who regularly attend the WEF in Davos have indicated a strong interest in having more discussion about uniquely African topics”, Michael Rheinegger, Managing Partner, rainbow unlimited added.                      

The World Economic Forum remains the most prominent creative force to involve the world’s top leaders in collective events, and the focus of this year’s conference was ‘Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World’.

Data Source: Ringier Africa Digital Publishing (RADP)

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