Invest Africa will return to the Africa Tech Festival, convening a high-level fireside chat on advancing Africa’s digital infrastructure in partnership with DLA Piper. Featuring Google’s Managing Director for Africa Alex Okosi, Cassava Technologies President and Group Chief Executive Officer Hardy Pemhiwa, and DLA Piper’s Partner Livia Dyer, the event will shed light on the evolving digital landscape in African markets and the opportunities and challenges it presents for investors.
The fireside chat will provide a platform for the discussions around achieving inclusive connectivity across the continent, tackling digital infrastructure challenges, and raising awareness about issues of cybersecurity and digital proficiency across diverse populations. Our two Industry leaders will provide us with their view on the investment opportunities within Africa’s digital ecosystem.
The digital landscape in African markets is rapidly evolving, presenting both opportunities and challenges for investors. Approximately four in ten Africans now have internet access, with around 60% accessing it through mobile phones. This connectivity has a profound economic impact. Internet adoption is forecasted to contribute a staggering $180 billion to Africa’s GDP by 2025, while a 10% rise in mobile broadband penetration alone is projected to result in a 2.5% increase in GDP per capita.
Persistent challenges remain, however: 300 million Africans live more than 50 km away from a broadband connection, and the majority of inter-country internet traffic still relies on undersea cables. While Africa strives to establish a unified digital market, regulatory landscapes diverge among its 54 countries – not least of all in data protection and intellectual property rights.
Africa’s digital transformation is not just a goal but a necessity for the continent’s growth. Google is supporting a range of initiatives from improved connectivity to investment in startups to help boost Africa’s digital transformation.
Alex Okosi, Managing Director for Africa, Google
We believe that digital infrastructure is one of the most important pillars for Africa’s economic development. Technology solutions for the continent must be grounded in ‘African Intelligence’. We have to develop local technology solutions and adapt what is available globally to Africa’s unique development challenges. Cassava Technologies has made extensive investments in realising our vision of enabling a digitally connected future that leaves no African behind.
Hardy Pemhiwa, President & Group Chief Executive Officer, Cassava Technologies