. Ulrich Proeschel, Vice President Business Development of TBWA, a Top 10 worldwide advertising agency, has interviewed Beate Wedekind, Founder and Editor-in-chief of TheNewAfrica. Please read an excerpt below.
Ulrich Proeschel: What makes TheNewAfrica different to other media commenting on Africa?
Beate Wedekind: We are aggregating the most interesting articles on Work and Life from international and African media, the blogosphere and global institutions. We don’t concentrate on success stories alone, TheNewAfrica is as well about exciting contemporary culture. Our community from the continent and from the diaspora is increasingly writing their own articles. TheNewAfrica is not a business platform, although it does hope to create business and new markets by introducing sustainable partnerships. TheNewAfrica is a lifestyle, a mindset, because it has a holistic approach to Work and Life. That is truly unique. …
UP: Which are the most vibrant markets in Africa right now – and which should we look out for in the near future?
BW: Of course the mobile industry, and natural resources. But also upscale consumer goods. A new young middle class is growing into a consumer society for the first time in African history, and their market potential is a promising counterbalance to the diminishing markets of the Northern and Western worlds.
UP: Who are the three African entrepreneurs or startups who’ve most impressed you so far?
BW: Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu, a shoe designer and social entrepreneur in Ethiopia, the global face of success in Africa: Solerebels.
Eric Hersman, a white Kenyan entrepreneur and international renowned blogger and innovator, co-founder of BRCK, a modem solving connectivity problems on the continent.
Moctar Dembélé and Gérard Niyondiko, from Burundi and Burkina Faso, who have developed an innovative mosquito repellant solution, Faso Soap.
UP: How, if at all, does their approach differ from that of entrepreneurs in Asia and the West?
BW: This generation of young African entrepreneurs is hot and hip and socially responsible at the same time. They want to make a future not only for themselves but also for their communities, their countries, the whole continent. They are less self centered than many European and Asian young entrepreneurs who have never experienced poverty in their life and in their history.
UP: What piece of advice would you offer to an overseas company that wants to do business with Africa?
BW: Please go to Africa. Don’t miss your chance.
Please continue to read the interview on the CREATE BUSINESS Blog.
About CREATE BUSINESS and CoCreator
The CREATE BUSINESS blog celebrates creative thinking that makes brands smarter, more relevant and more successful and is curated by Ulrich Proeschel, Co-Founder of CoCreator and Vice President Business Development at TBWA Europe. TBWA is ranked as a Top 10 worldwide advertising agency. It has 274 offices in 100 countries (out of which more than a dozen on the African continent) and over 11,000 employees worldwide.
CoCreator is a business speed-dater connecting startup founders with some of the worlds most creative communication experts in the fields of branding & communications, business & product and partnerships.