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Economy, Emerging Markets

FT Africa Summit 2017

What Makes Africa Work

London |  - 
Speakers include:
Aliko Dangote

Aliko Dangote

Dangote Group

Yvonne Ike

Yvonne Ike

Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Yaw Nsarkoh

Yaw Nsarkoh

Unilever Nigeria PLC


Too often we focus on Africa’s problems, whether of governance, commodity dependency, poor infrastructure or entrenched poverty. Without taking a rose-tinted view, this year’s FT Africa Summit aims to shift the focus to what is working in Africa in the hope of drawing broader lessons that could benefit the continent as a whole. In that spirit, the agenda will aim to turn the spotlight on what is going right – without, of course, losing sight of what is going wrong or what could be done better. We will ask the most pressing questions of a range of business people, policymakers, investors, practitioners and innovators, ensuring that the agenda has space for some fresh voices from the worlds of marketing, arts and culture. The thrust will be on Africa telling its own stories and learning from its own complex and diverse experience.

fallback Add to my Calendar 10/08/2017 18:30:0010/09/2017 20:00:00trueFT Africa Summit 2017Too often we focus on Africa’s problems, whether of governance, commodity dependency, poor infrastructure or entrenched poverty. Without taking a rose-tinted view, this year’s FT Africa Summit aims to shift the focus to what is working in Africa in the hope of drawing broader lessons that could benefit the continent as a whole. In that spirit, the agenda will aim to turn the spotlight on what is going right – without, of course, losing sight of what is going wrong or what could be done better. We will ask the most pressing questions of a range of business people, policymakers, investors, practitioners and innovators, ensuring that the agenda has space for some fresh voices from the worlds of marketing, arts and culture. The thrust will be on Africa telling its own stories and learning from its own complex and diverse experience.FT-Africa-Summit-20170149ce08cfafdad406162ae42494280dMM/DD/YYYY

Agenda - 8th Oct

  • 6:30pm
    Welcome Reception

    Hosted by Lionel Barber, Editor, Financial Times

Agenda - 9th Oct

  • 8:00am
    Registration and Networking
  • 9:00am
    Opening Remarks

    Lionel Barber, Editor, Financial Times

  • 9:30am
    What Makes Africa Work?

    A panel of some of Africa’s most compelling and original thinkers will cast their eye over the continent with the aim of setting the conference agenda. How are different countries, businesses and investors adapting to the very different environment that faces the continent now that the froth of the Africa Rising narrative has been removed.

  • 10:15am
    View from the Top

    Interviewed by Lionel Barber, Editor, Financial Times

  • 10:45am
  • 11:15am
    Reinventing the African City

    About 470 million Africans live in cities, a number set to more than double by 2040 when the World Bank estimates it will hit 1 billion. Africa is urbanizing at lower incomes than other developing regions: when countries in the East Asia and Pacific region became 40 per cent urban, their per capita income was $3,600. By contrast, Africa, at the same level of urbanization, today has a per capita GDP of just $1,000. That provides enormous challenges of transport, housing, jobs and sanitation. But even more than this, it presents the challenge of how African countries will turn their cities into efficient drivers of efficiency, growth and prosperity. There are no easy answers, but to discuss what some cities are doing, we will gather a panel of policymakers and practitioners to discuss some of the most interesting experiments.

  • 12:00pm
    Finance: The New Investors

    Development finance. Impact investing. Growth investing. Private equity. There is a huge array of investors and lenders, large and small, trying to tap into Africa's growth story. Not all of them have managed to deploy their capital  successfully, but many are convinced that there are excellent growth opportunities out there waiting for the right finance. The key is to bridge the gap between the investment funds and the businesses in need of growth capital. This panel will look at some positive examples and ask how the model can be expanded. 

  • 12:45pm
  • 1:55pm
    Lunchtime Briefing Session

    Patrick Dupoux, Senior Partner, Head of Africa, The Boston Consulting Group

  • 2:15pm
    The CEO Panel

    After last year’s hit CEO panel, Lionel Barber once again interviews some of the most extraordinary and provocative Chief Executives from the continent.

  • 3:00pm
    African Voices

    For too long, the narrative of Africa has been written by outsiders. This panel will gather a range of people from the worlds of marketing, polling, publishing and investing who are talking with, to and about what Africans want: whether it be from their politicians, their consumer companies or their TV shows.

  • 3:45pm
  • 4:15pm
    Art Keynote: African Writers Are Making Waves

    Interview by David Pilling, Africa Editor, Financial Times

  • 4:45pm
    Oil, Gas and Minerals: Extracting Value

    Commodity prices are coming back, breathing fresh life into what had been a very troubled extractive industry from copper and iron ore to gold and even oil. Meanwhile, there are big gas projects being planned across the continent, from Mozambique to Mauritania. As things begin to get better, African countries will need to work out a better way of extracting the full value from what is their own patrimony. This panel will look at varied experiences from across the continent. What is working and what is not?

  • 5:30pm
    Close of Summit
  • 6:30pm
    Summit Reception
  • 7:30pm
    FT Africa Summit Dinner

Speakers (22)

Aliko Dangote

Aliko Dangote

President and CEO
Dangote Group

Aliko Dangote founded Dangote Group over 30 years ago and has turned his enterprise into the largest business conglomerate in West Africa, with a market capitalization of $15.5 billion. The Dangote Group is the largest private employer in Nigeria. Mr. Dangote invests in 15 African countries, creating jobs and economic value across the continent in a range of industries.

A leading global philanthropist, Aliko Dangote has set up the largest Foundation in Africa with an endowment of $1.25 billion. Locally focused, but globally minded, the Dangote Foundation is at the forefront of improving the nutrition, health and education of Nigerians. He is passionate about lifting the most vulnerable people out of poverty through economic empowerment. The Foundation is a leading contributor to the ‘Saving One Million Lives’ every year in Nigeria initiative. The Dangote Foundation was at the vanguard of containing the spread of Ebola in Nigeria and other parts of Africa. The Foundation was the biggest private contributor to the African Union Ebola Trust Fund with a donation of $3 million.

Aliko Dangote is a member of the United Nations Secretary-General’s Global Education First Initiative steering committee; founding member of the Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria, a coalition between the private sector and health organisations to achieve the MDGs; founding member of the Gordon Brown-led Global Business Coalition for Education; and sits on the Board of the Corporate Council on Africa. He is a member of the Clinton Global Initiative and the World Economic Forum.

Yvonne Ike

Yvonne Ike

Managing Director, Sub Saharan Africa (EX-RSA)
Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Yvonne Ike is managing director, Sub Saharan Africa (EX-RSA) at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. Prior to joining the bank, Ms Ike was the chief executive officer, West Africa at Renaissance Capital, responsible for the firm’s West Africa franchise covering Investment Banking, Securities Trading, Treasury Services and Asset Management. Ms Ike has more than 18 years experience in financial services, including capital markets operations and fixed income, derivatives and equities products. Over the course of her career, she has led senior teams in New York, Geneva, Hong Kong, Nigeria and South Africa. She started her career as an auditor with Ernst and Young International, and has been an FSA-registered representative since 1994. Prior to joining Renaissance Capital, Ms Ike was a managing director at JP Morgan, where she spent 15 years of her career until 2009. More recently, she has worked as a partner at Africapital Management Limited.  Ms Ike is also a trustee of Bridge Leadership Academy, Christopher Kolade Foundation, Dangote Foundation and is an independent director of Guinness Nigeria PLC. She is passionate about actively contributing to Africa’s development and is involved in several initiatives including, African Gifted Foundation, Women for Women International. Ms Ike has received many international awards including being recognized by the Queen of England as one of the Top 200 Business women in the UK to make a significant impact in society in 2007.

Yaw Nsarkoh

Yaw Nsarkoh

Managing Director
Unilever Nigeria PLC

Yaw Nsarkoh was appointed as Unilever Nigeria’s Managing Director in January 2014. Until this appointment, he served as Managing Director of Unilever East and Southern Africa, based in Kenya. He has served as Strategic Assistant to Unilever Executive Member and President of Unilever Asia, Africa, Central and Eastern Europe, based in the United Kingdom. He also served at various times as Marketing Director of Unilever Ghana, African Regional Brand Manager for the Laundry Regional Innovation Centre, based at Unilever South Africa and Production Manager of Unilever Ghana.

He has contributed immensely to the growth of Unilever’s businesses in Ghana, South Africa, Asia and Central and Eastern Europe in his over 20-year career at the company. Mr. Nsarkoh holds an Honors Degree in Chemical Engineering from University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana and a Postgraduate Diploma in Management from Henley Management College, Henley-on-Thames, United Kingdom. 

His areas of expertise and experience include, but are not limited to: Team Leadership and General Management, Marketing and Innovation, Supply Chain and Project Management and Execution, External Networking and Stakeholders’ Management. 

He is a member of the Ghana Institution of Engineers and a Director of the Changing Lives Endowment Fund (CLEF) in Ghana. He is a regular speaker on business issues, specifically Marketing and Leadership at public fora. His hobbies include walking, cycling, and civil society advocacy. He has a special interest in development economics, management and leadership philosophy.

Bibi  Bakare-Yusuf

Bibi Bakare-Yusuf

Co-Founder and Publishing Director
Cassava Republic Press

Bibi Bakare-Yusuf is co-founder and publishing director of one of Africa’s leading publishing houses, Cassava Republic Press and the co-founder of Tapestry Consulting, a boutique research and training company focused on gender, sexuality and transformational issues in Nigeria.   She has worked as a gender and research consultant in the public, private and development sectors for the BBC, UniFem, ActionAid, eShekels, Central Bank of Nigeria, the European Union and others. She has a Ph.D in Women and Gender Studies from the University of Warwick. She has published many academic papers and regularly presents papers at academic conferences. She sits on the editorial board of a number of influential journals and is the chair of board of The Initiative for Equal Rights, the largest organisation in West Africa devoted to LGBTQ issues.  Bibi is also a Yale World Fellow, a Desmond Tutu Fellow and a Frankfurt Book Fair Fellow. 

Herman Chinery-Hesse

Herman Chinery-Hesse

TheSOFTtribe Ltd

Herman Kojo Chinery-Hesse has been listed as one of the top 100 global thinkers by the US based publication, Foreign Policy Magazine. He and his companies have won numerous awards and accolades including the GUBA award in the UK, the Ghana Millennium Excellence Awards for IT, the Ghana Club 100 Award for the most innovative company, the “SMS App of the year” award, the Mobile World Lifetime Achievement Award, Best Entrepreneur in Information and Communication Technology and the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Texas State University, the first and currently only African recipient of the award.

In 1991, Herman co-founded the SOFTtribe Ltd, one of the leading software houses in Africa. In 2008, he also co-founded Black Star Line S.A. an e-commerce company behind the novel “Sundiata” payment platform, pioneering e-payments and e-commerce to millions of rural Africans. His newest innovation is the forthcoming e-commerce platform web mall. His companies have collaborated to develop a number of award winning products such as Hei Julor!!! a low cost, mobile based, mass market security alert system for Africa.

Herman has been a speaker at many prestigious institutions including Oxford University, Harvard Business School, Wharton Business School, Chatham House, CPH Conference, Tech4Africa etc. He is a TED fellow and has been featured in the international media including CNN, BBC and Al Jazeera. He has been featured in many magazines including Ghana Business and Finance Times, Forbes and many more. He was placed 17 on the list of 20 Notable Black Innovators in Technology. Herman has been listed as one of Africa’s Top 20 Tech Influencers and also listed as one of 100 most influential Africans of our time. He is also an assessor for the Commercial Courts of Ghana. 

He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Industrial Technology from Texas State University and is considered a giant in African technology and innovation. INC magazine and other international publications have referred to him as “The Bill Gates of Africa.”

Patrick Dupoux

Patrick Dupoux

Senior Partner, Head of Africa
The Boston Consulting Group

Patrick Dupoux leads BCG Africa operations. He also leads the firm’s globalization topic in BCG’s Western Europe, South America, and Africa region. He founded and is the current Chairman of the Casablanca office. Patrick joined BCG in 2001 and has supported many African and multinational companies in Africa across a range of industries, including industrial goods, consumer goods, energy, and agriculture. He authored several BCG's reports on the Africa Region, "The African Challengers" in 2010, "Winning in Africa" in 2013, "Dueling with Lions" in 2015 and "Why Africa remains ripe for Private Equity" in 2016. He continues to lead research on the emergence of Africa and the ways in which companies can succeed in the context of Africa’s broader plans for expansion.  He holds a master in civil engineering from the "Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées" (1996) in France and a MBA from INSEAD (2000).

Helen Hai

Helen Hai

CEO, Made in Africa Initiative
Goodwill Ambassador, UNIDO

HAI Helen is the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) Goodwill Ambassador for industrialization in Africa. She is the CEO of the Made in Africa Initiative which advises African government for industrialization and investment promotion. Ambassador Hai is Co-Founder of C&H Garments, which is a pioneer Pan-Africa export-oriented garments manufacturer. 

Ambassador Hai was trained as an actuary in the United Kingdom with near 20 years of international experience in FTSE100 companies. She has BA in actuarial science and MSc in actuarial management from CASS Business School in London and EMBA from INSEAD and Tsinghua University.

Ambassador Hai was named a 2015 Global Young Leader by World Economic Forum, and she is co-chair of the Global Future Council on the Future of Consumption for World Economics Forum. She received the 2015 African Business Icon Award, and awarded as Officer of the National Order of Lion of Senegal in 2016.

She is on the committee of Global Commission on Business and Sustainable Development.

Hadeel Ibrahim

Hadeel Ibrahim

Founding Executive Director
Mo Ibrahim Foundation

Hadeel Ibrahim is the founding Executive Director of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, which was established in 2006 to support leadership and governance in Africa. 

Hadeel is co-Chair of the Board of Directors of the Africa Center in New York, whose mission is to promote partnership, collaboration, dialogue and understanding between African artists, business leaders and civil society and their counterparts in the United States and beyond.

Hadeel serves of the Boards of the Mary Robinson Foundation for Climate Justice, the Clinton Foundation, the BMCE Bank of Africa, 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair, and the Governing Board of the African Governance Institute. 

She also serves on the Dean’s Advisory Council for the School of Architecture and Planning at the The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is a member of Amnesty International’s Secretary General’s Global Council, a member of the International Advisory Committee & Jury of the London Design Biennale and is a Patron of Restless Development, a youth led development agency. 

Hadeel previously served as a member of the UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel on Humanitarian Financing, on the Boards of The Synergos Institute, Refugees International, the Carter Center (UK) and the FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards Judging Panel. 

Somik  Lall

Somik Lall

Lead Economist for Urban Development in Africa
World Bank

Somik V. Lall is the World Bank’s Global Lead on Territorial Development Solutions and its Lead Economist for Urban Development in Africa. He has been a core team member of the World Development Report 2009: Reshaping Economic Geography, Senior Economic Counselor to the Indian Prime Minister’s National Transport Development Policy Committee, and Lead Author of the World Bank’s flagship report on urbanization “Planning, Connecting, and Financing Cities Now” as well as the recent ‘Africa’s Cities: Opening Doors to the World’.  Somik heads a World Bank global research program on urbanization and spatial development and previously founded the Urbanization Reviews program. He is a recognized expert on development policy related to urban and territorial competitiveness, agglomeration and clusters, infrastructure, and impact evaluation, with over 18 years’ global experience, most notably in Asia, Africa, and Latin America..  His research and policy advisory interests focus on “place shaping policies”, around cities, clusters, and corridors and the functioning of factor and product markets, with more than 40 publications featured in peer-reviewed journals including the “Journal of Development Economics” and “Journal of Urban Economics”, edited volumes including the “Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics”, and working papers.  He holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering, master’s in city planning, and doctorate in economics and public policy.

Yemi Lalude

Yemi Lalude

Managing Partner
TPG Africa

Yemi Lalude is a Managing Partner at TPG based in London, where he leads TPG Growth's investments in Africa and is a leader in emerging market investment activities in the TMT sector. Prior to joining TPG in 2015, Yemi was Founder and Managing Partner of Adlevo Capital, a technology-focused investment firm in Africa. Yemi holds degrees from the University of Lagos, Stanford University and Harvard University.

Mohamed Mansour

Mohamed Mansour

Mansour Group

Mohamed Mansour took over the Mansour Group following the passing of his father in 1976.

From early 2006 until October 2009, Mr Mansour was appointed as the Minister of Transport in Egypt, one of the largest service ministries employing over 250,000 people, and overseeing 23 affiliate authorities in five main sectors: maritime, transport and ports, roads and bridges, railways, metro and river transport.

Mr Mansour is the Founder and Chairman of Mansour Automotive Company (General Motors distributor), Mantrac and Unatrac (Caterpillar’s distributor) and of Credit Agricole Egypt – the second largest bank in the country.

He is the Founder and Chairman of the Lead Foundation, a non-profit organisation providing funding to small and micro enterprises.

He has served as the Chairman of the Egypt-U.S. Business Council, and was also the President of the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt, as well as the Secretary General of the Egyptian Center for Economic Studies.

He is also a member of the Board of the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies at Georgetown University; the George Washington School of Business Advisory Board and the International Advisory Board of the Coca-Cola Company.

Moeletsi Mbeki

Moeletsi Mbeki

Deputy Chairperson
South African Institute for International Affairs

Moeletsi Mbeki is a political analyst, author and an entrepreneur. He is a director of several companies, is Chairman of KMM Investments (Pty) Limited, KMM Review Publishing (Pty) Limited, MGM Capital Investments (Pty) Limited and Executive Chairman of EndemolShine Africa.

Moeletsi is the author of Architects of Poverty: Why African Capitalism Needs Changing.  He edited Advocates for Change: How to Overcome Africa’s Challenges.  Both books have been translated into Chinese. He has recently co-authored A Manifesto for Social Change: How to Save South Africa, with his niece Dr Nobantu Mbeki.

He is Deputy Chairman of the South African Institute for International Affairs (SAIIA); an independent think tank based at the University of the Witwatersrand and is a member of the council of the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) which is based in London.

After returning to South Africa from exile in 1990, he was appointed Head of Communications for the Congress of South Africa Trade Unions, (Cosatu) and Media Consultant to the African National Congress.

During most of the 1980s he was a Senior Journalist for the Zimbabwe Newspapers in Harare. As a result of the outstanding work that he did for the Zimbabwe Newspapers Features Department, he was awarded a Nieman Fellowship by Harvard University for the 1988 – 1989 academic years.

Mbeki began his journalism career in London in 1979 as a contributor to Africa, New African, Africa Now magazines and to the BBC Africa Service.

He studied Building, Building Management and Sociology in England, obtaining an M.A. degree in Sociology from the University of Warwick in 1982.  He worked in the construction industry in the United Kingdom and in Tanzania during the 1970s.

Nick  O'Donohoe

Nick O'Donohoe

Chief Executive Officer
CDC Group plc

Nick O'Donohoe joined CDC as its Chief Executive in June 2017 and is also a member of the CDC Board. He was previously a Senior Adviser to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation where he specialised in the use of blended finance models to support the work of the Foundation.

Prior to taking this role, Nick co-founded, with Sir Ronald Cohen, Big Society Capital (BSC). He served as its Chief Executive Officer from 2011 to December 2015. BSC is an independent financial institution established by the UK Government as "the world's first social investment bank" and is capitalised with unclaimed UK bank accounts and investment by the largest UK banks.

Previously Nick worked at JP Morgan, latterly as Global Head of Research. He was a member of the Management Committee of the Investment Bank and the Executive Committee of JP Morgan Chase, as well as the senior sponsor for JP Morgan's Social Finance Unit. Nick co-authored "Impact Investments: An Emerging Asset Class", published by JP Morgan and the Rockefeller Foundation in November 2010. Prior to JP Morgan, he spent fifteen years at Goldman Sachs.

Nick served as Chairman of the UK Dormant Assets Commission which reported in March 2017. He is also a board member of the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) and Deputy Chairman of the Global Steering Group on Impact Investment.

Nick has an MBA from the Wharton School and a BA in Mathematical Economics and Statistics from Trinity College, Dublin.

Ebele  Okobi

Ebele Okobi

Public Policy Director, Africa

Ebele Okobi is Facebook’s Public Policy Director for Africa. She has worked across Africa, Europe and in the US as a lawyer, civil society advocate and in marketing and business development. Prior to joining Facebook, she was Global Head of Human Rights at Yahoo, in the management development program in Nike’s EMEA headquarters, a senior director at Catalyst in Silicon Valley/Amsterdam; a consumer rights policy fellow at Consumers Union in San Francisco and a lawyer at Davis Polk & Wardwell in New York, Paris and London.

She was a founding board member of the Global Network Initiative, is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations and serves on the Advisory Board of Alliance for an Affordable Internet. She attended the University of Southern California, Columbia Law School and HEC-Paris.

Arkebe Oqubay

Arkebe Oqubay

Special Advisor to the Prime Minister
Government of Ethiopia

Dr Arkebe Oqubay is a Minister and Special Advisor to the Prime Minister of Ethiopia. He is the former mayor of Addis Ababa, and pioneered the transformation of the city under his leadership. In recognition of this, he was awarded ‘The Best African Mayor of 2005’ by the African Broadcast Network (ABN), and was a finalist for the award of World Mayor of 2005. Dr Arkebe serves as Chairman and Vice Chair of boards of directors of many leading public organisations, such as the Ethiopian Railway Corporation (ERC), Ethiopian Airlines (EAL), and Industrial Parks Development Corporation (IPDC). He also serves as member of the Ethiopian Investment Board (EIB) and National Export Coordinating Committee (NECC), which are both chaired by the Prime Minister. Dr Arkebe has been a member of the core leadership of the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) and the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), the movement that spearheaded the seventeen-year popular liberation struggle. He holds a PhD in Development Studies from SOAS, University of London, and is research associate at the Centre of African Studies in the University of London. His path-breaking and widely read book Made in Africa: Industrial Policy in Ethiopia (Oxford University Press, 2015) focuses on Africa’s economic transformation, industrialisation and policymaking. 

Bright	 Simons

Bright Simons


Bright Simons is the President of mPedigree, where he pioneered a system that allows consumers to instantly check whether products they buy, especially health-related products, are counterfeits or not by sending a free text message.

He is honorary director of development research at IMANI; a member of the World Economic Forum's Global Agenda Councils (on Data and development), Young Global Leaders, and Technology Pioneers Communities; a TED and Ashoka fellow; and a Brain Trust member of the Evian Group at IMD. He is a recipient of numerous awards, ranging from an Archbishop Desmond Tutu Award, Marie Curie and Commonwealth Vision Grants to a PPARC Scholarship in Gamma Ray Astronomy. Bright is consulted on innovation strategy by international organizations such as the World Bank, UNECA, USAID, and the Commonwealth; and is a member of the United Nations taskforce on innovative models in healthcare and the Lancet Commission on Sub-Saharan Africa. He is a Global Fellow of the Salzburg Global Seminar, where he also served on the 2011 faculty for healthcare. He has appeared on prime time BBC shows, been cited by the Economist magazine, and been profiled by MIT's Tech Review as one of the world's most impressive visionaries under age 35.

This year, Fortune Magazine named Bright in their 50 World’s Greatest Leaders list among other industry players like Apple & Amazon CEOs, Tim Cook and Jeff Bezos respectively and also Pope Francis. Bright is furthermore a member of the Advisory Board of IC Publications, one of the world's leading publishers focused on Africa and the African diaspora; of the Microsoft for Africa Advisory Council; and of the Sanofi Digital and Africa 2.0 Advisory boards.

Sev Vettivetpillai

Sev Vettivetpillai

Managing Partner
The Abraaj Group

Sev Vettivetpillai is a Managing Partner, Executive Board Member of The Abraaj Group and Global Head of Thematic Fund Businesses, responsible for the Group’s Healthcare, Real Estate, Energy Infrastructure and Private Credit strategies, as well as leading the efforts on launching new products and strategies for the company.

Mr. Vettivetpillai is a permanent member of the Investment Committee responsible for review and approval of all Abraaj investments across the platform. He has more than 25 years of experience within the growth markets private equity arena, with extensive experience in the areas of setting up successfully new teams in new geographies and products, strategic investment management, fundraising, deal structuring, valuation, due diligence and portfolio management.

Mr. Vettivetpillai was the Founder of the Aureos Group, where he held the position of Chief Executive Officer from 2003 until 2012, and Chief Investment Officer from 2001 and built the largest emerging market focused private equity business investing in SMEs. He successfully led the management buy-out in 2009 and subsequently merged the organization with The Abraaj Group in 2012.

In 2013, Sev Vettivetpillai received a Special Recognition Award for Outstanding Leadership in Private Equity Africa, in London. This was an individual award in recognition of his leadership in African private equity.

Mr. Vettivetpillai sits on many boards as an independent/nominee director including the African Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (AVCA).

Prior to joining Aureos, Mr. Vettivetpillai was a Senior Investment Executive at CDC Group plc, London, between 1996-2001.

Mr. Vettivetpillai is a CFA Charter holder and completed a BEng (Hons) in Civil Engineering from Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, UK.

Simon  Wandke

Simon Wandke

Executive Vice President and CEO of Mining

Simon has been the CEO of ArcelorMittal Mining since 2015.  He joined the company in January 2011 as chief commercial officer of ArcelorMittal Mining and is a member of the group management committee. He has over 30 years’ experience in the mining and minerals industry, starting his career in 1981 at BHP Billiton, where he held positions in mines in Australia and Indonesia and other commercial offices globally until 2002. He then joined Destra Consulting Group as Partner before becoming Chief Marketing Officer for Ferrexpo plc in 2006 based in Hong Kong and Switzerland.
Simon is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors with a Diploma in Company Directorship. He also holds a Graduate Diploma in Corporate Finance from Swinburne University, Australia, as well as a B.A., Psych, Marketing (Comm) from the University of Melbourne, Australia.

Adebola  Williams

Adebola Williams

Co-Founder of RED and CEO
RED Media Africa and StateCraft Inc

Recently named by the UN as one of 100 Most Influential People of African Descent and profiled by Forbes as the man who helped three Presidents win elections consecutively in Africa, Adebola Williams is Co-Founder of RED, which is home to several well-known brands including The Future Awards Africa,, amongst others. RED's impressive client list over the years includes the British Council, Nigeria LNG, Union Bank, Facebook, Uber and Intel.

Under the RED network, he is chief executive officer of communication company, Red Media Africa and nation-building company, StateCraft Inc. he has been named CNBC Young Business Leader of the year, Forbes 30 Under 30, and Businessday 40 Under 40. In 2017, he was named "Evangelist of The Future" at the C4F Davos Award

Adebola co-founded EnoughisEnough (EiE), one of Nigeria's foremost civic participation group and premium voice for young people on politics. He was Chairman of the Board until resigning to take the lead on the communication and rebranding of the current Nigerian president. Muhammadu Buhari. He led the team that reshaped the national discourse, and optimise media engagement that helped change longstanding perceptions and ushered in a new president. He has recently done the same in Ghana helping the opposition candidate win the presidency on his third attempt.

Inducted into the Lagos state Gallery of Entrepreneurs and pacesetters in 2014, Adebola crusades on Entrepreneurship, Leadership and Impact Change with a focus on youth across the world. He has been an invited speaker at conferences in London Business School, Wharton, Stern, ALF NewYork, WIMBIZ, AU conferences, UNFPA conferences, and most recently went on a tour of IVy Leagues schools; Yale, Columbia, Oxford and Harvard.

An alumni of the London School of Journalism, London School of Marketing and the Pan African University, Adebola is a member of the African Leadership Network, a British Council Global Changemaker and sits on the boards of Slum to School Africa and Chairs the board of Young Entrepreneurs Network.

A President Obama Mandela Washington fellow, Adebola's unique profile recently earned him a never-been-done deal as the first entrepreneur ambassador for leading telecoms Line in Africa, Globacom.

Ngaire Woods

Ngaire Woods

Blavatnik School of Government

Professor Ngaire Woods is the founding Dean of the Blavatnik School of Government and Professor of Global Economic Governance at Oxford University. Her research focuses on how to enhance the governance of organizations, the challenges of globalization, global development, and the role of international institutions and global economic governance. Previously, she founded the Global Economic Governance Programme at Oxford University and co-founded (with Robert O. Keohane) the Oxford-Princeton Global Leaders Fellowship programme. She led the creation of the Blavatnik School of Government at Oxford University.

Ngaire Woods serves as a member of the International Advisory Panel of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, on the Board of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, and as a Rhodes Trustee. She is co-Chair of the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on Values, Technology and Governance. She serves on the Advisory Group of the Center for Global Development (Washington DC). Previously, she served as a Non-Executive Director on the Arup Global Group Board and on the Board of the Center for International Governance Innovation in Canada. She has also served as a member of the IMF European Regional Advisory Group, and as an Advisor to the IMF Board, to the African Development Bank, to the UNDP’s Human Development Report, and to the Commonwealth Heads of Government. She has presented numerous documentaries for BBC Radio 4 and BBC TV2.

Ngaire Woods’ books include: The Politics of Global Regulation (with Walter Mattli, Oxford University Press, 2009), Networks of Influence? Developing Countries in a Networked Global Order (with Leonardo Martinez-Diaz, Oxford University Press, 2009), The Globalizers: the IMF, the World Bank and their Borrowers (Cornell University Press, 2006), Exporting Good Governance: Temptations and Challenges in Canada’s Aid Program (with Jennifer Welsh, Laurier University Press, 2007), and Making Self-Regulation Effective in Developing Countries (with Dana Brown, Oxford University Press, 2007). She has previously published The Political Economy of Globalization (Macmillan, 2000), Inequality, Globalization and World Politics (with Andrew Hurrell: Oxford University Press, 1999), Explaining International Relations since 1945 (Oxford University Press, 1986), and numerous articles on international institutions, globalization, and governance.

She was educated at Auckland University (BA in economics, LLB Hons in law). She studied at Balliol College, Oxford as a New Zealand Rhodes Scholar, completing an MPhil (with Distinction) and then DPhil (in 1992) in International Relations. She won a Junior Research Fellowship at New College, Oxford (1990-1992) and subsequently taught at Harvard University (Government Department) before taking up her Fellowship at University College, Oxford and academic roles at Oxford University. 

Jabu  Mabuza

Jabu Mabuza

Telkom SA
Juliet  Anammah

Juliet Anammah

Chief Executive Officer
Jumia Nigeria

Chaired by (2)

David Pilling

David Pilling

Africa Editor
Financial Times

David Pilling is the Africa Editor of the FT. Previously he was the Asia Editor (2008-16), Tokyo Bureau Chief (2002-08), Pharmaceuticals Correspondent (1999-2001), Deputy Features Editor (1997-99) and Chile/Argentina Correspondent (1993-97). He is the author of Bending Adversity: Japan and the Art of Survival (Penguin, 2014)

Lionel  Barber

Lionel Barber

Financial Times

Lionel Barber is the editor of the Financial Times. Since his appointment in 2005, Mr Barber has helped solidify the FT’s position as one of the first publishers to successfully transform itself into a multichannel news organisation. During his tenure, the FT has won numerous global prizes for its journalism, including Newspaper of the Year, Overseas Press Club, Gerald Loeb and Society of Publishers in Asia awards. He has co-written several books and has lectured widely on foreign policy, transatlantic relations, European security and monetary union in the US and Europe and appears regularly on TV and radio around the world. As editor, he has interviewed many of the world’s leaders in business and politics, including: US President Barack Obama, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany and President of Iran, Hassan Rouhani.

Mr Barber has received several distinguished awards, including the St George Society medal of honour and the Legion d’Honneur for his contribution to journalism in the transatlantic community. He serves on the Board of Trustees at the Tate and the Carnegie Corporation of New York.


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Hotel deals for FT Africa Summit 2017

We look forward to seeing you at FT Africa Summit 2017 on the 8th October. We have put together a unique HotelMap that shows our hotel deals at nearby hotels.

The FT Africa Summit 2017 HotelMap is here:

Alternatively, if you would like assistance with your hotel booking you can contact Jessica Heili, our dedicated concierge. If you email Jessica with your requirements, phone number and quoting Special Reference Code W-M3C3C to she will get back to you to discuss your hotel options.


Organised by (1)

The Financial Times is one of the world’s leading business news organisations, recognised internationally for its authority, integrity and accuracy. Providing essential news, comment, data and analysis for the global business community, the FT has a combined paid print and digital circulation of 840,000. Mobile is an increasingly important channel for the FT, driving more than half of total traffic.

Platinum Sponsor (1)

Bank of America is one of the world's leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 47 million consumer and small business relationships with approximately 4,600 retail financial centers, approximately 15,900 ATMs, and award-winning digital banking with approximately 35 million active users and more than 22 million mobile users. Bank of America is a global leader in wealth management, corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and more than 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Knowledge Partner (1)

The Boston Consulting Group's presence in Africa includes four permanent offices in Casablanca, Lagos, Luanda and Johannesburg, 7 research centers and over 100 consultants across the continent. BCG projects in Africa cover a large spectrum of industry sectors including Industrial Goods, Financial Institutions and Insurance, Public Sector, Energy, Consumer Products, Healthcare and Technology, Media and Telecommunications.

Silver Sponsor (1)

NetJets Europe is the world’s leading business aviation company. Launched in Europe in 1996 and backed by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, the Fractional Ownership Programme provides unmatched freedom and flexibility – all the advantages of owning a private jet, with none of the hassle.

Media partners (7)

CDC is the UK’s development finance institution. Set up in 1948, CDC has been investing in businesses across Africa for nearly 70 years. We have a dual objective to support development impact through economic growth and jobs and to make a financial return, which we re-invest into more businesses. CDC provides more than capital alone, working over the long-term alongside businesses to help them build management teams, improve standards, and attract further investment. We prioritise sectors that can have a transformational impact on economies, creating jobs and building businesses. Our focus is on infrastructure, agribusiness, construction, manufacturing, education, health and financial services. We invested over £1.2bn in 2016 and have assets valued at nearly £5bn.

Africa Confidential is one of the longest-established specialist publications on Africa, with a considerable reputation for being first with in-depth news and analysis on significant political, economic and security developments across the continent.

Our track record owes much to our comprehensive network of local correspondents, and the connections we’ve built up throughout Africa since we started publishing back in 1960.

Why ‘confidential‘?

This continent-wide, on-the-ground coverage enables us to identify and monitor upcoming issues long before they are picked up by the general media – and analyse their real significance for our readers.

What’s more, all our contributors write for us on the basis of strict anonymity, a principle that was established from the outset in 1960 to ensure writers’ personal safety in the turbulent, early years of post-colonial African independence.  Hence the newsletter’s title.

Who reads Africa Confidential?

Africa Confidential is read fortnightly by a wide range of governmental, multilateral and academic institutions, NGO’s, risk advisory firms, multi-national corporations and individuals around the world - all united in their need for timely, accurate and incisive analysis of contemporary African developments.

Analyse Africa, a service from the Financial Times, is a digital database providing macroeconomic data from leading global sources. Gain instant access to 2.1 million data records, from 49 world renowned providers, and 5,000+ professionally validated indicators, in order to analyse, evaluate and spot opportunities in Africa. Analyse Africa is used to analyse, understand and evaluate entire economies to inform critical business decisions by financial service organisations, corporations, government agencies, multilaterals, consultancies and research and academic institutions worldwide.

View the first in a series of African country reports - Nigeria: By the numbers - a macroeconomic data and trends report on Nigeria.  Free download here.

This is Africa, a digital service from the Financial Times, examines African business, development and politics in a global context, making sense of the relationships that Africa is building with the rest of the world. It challenges international preconceptions about the continent and identifies the opportunities and risks in this dynamic business environment.

Follow us on Twitter @ThisIsAfrica

Sign up for our free e-newsletter

The Business Year (TBY) is a leading research firm and publisher of annual economic resources on national economies. Present in over 25 countries, TBY provides first-hand access to the people and ideas shaping business and policy throughout the world. Each country-specific edition contains a comprehensive range of interviews and analysis, offering an inside look at doing business in the world’s most dynamic economies. TBY’s interviewees, readers, and partners comprise an international network of thought-leaders who are helping to define the future of the global economy.

Menas Associates is a boutique strategic and political risk consultancy firm that specialises in providing actionable intelligence for any company operating in the emerging markets. Established in 1978, Menas is based in London and works with experienced and well-connected experts across the globe, ensuring that their information and analysis is based on real ‘on the ground’ knowledge. Their services include consulting, Ask our Experts telephone consultancy, briefings, and publications that are produced on a monthly, fortnightly and weekly basis. Menas Associates has a broad reach, and an extensive network of contacts around the globe, including the Middle East, the Caspian, Africa, South and East Asia, and Latin America.

Reaching over 300,000 readers monthly in over 75 countries, African Business is the best-selling, ABC-audited, African English language magazine. It is a sober, yet essential read for the discerning business person in Africa, or business person doing business in Africa. It is regarded with enormous respect globally. 


View photos from previous years:

FT Africa Summit 2016   Flickr

2016 photos

FT Africa Summit 2015   Flickr

2015 photos

FT Africa Summit 2014   Flickr

2014 photos


Past speakers include

Akinwumi Adesina, President, African Development Bank Group
Bob Collymore, CEO, Safaricom
Kelvin Balogun, President, South and East Africa, The Coca-Cola Company
Aliko Dangote, President and CEO, Dangote Group
Okechukwu Enelamah, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Government of Nigeria
Albert Essien, former Group Chief Executive Officer, Ecobank Group
Yvonne Ike, Managing Director & Head of Sub Saharan Africa (Ex-RSA), Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Ivan Glasenberg, Chief Executive Officer, Glencore
Pravin Gordhan, Former Minister of Finance, National Treasury, Republic of South Africa
Tidjane Thiam, Chief Executive Officer, Credit Suisse Group AG


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