A look back at the AFRICA CEO FORUM’s main highlights through the past 3 years.
The March 2019 edition in Kigali was the first AFRICA CEO FORUM to be held in East Africa and proved to be a record-breaking year: 1,800 participants from 70 countries, including the presidents of Rwanda, Togo, Ethiopia and the Democratic Republic of Congo; more than €3bn in investment opportunities; a third of the participating companies generating more than €500m in annual turnover. On the eve of the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area, African economic leaders discussed how to make economic integration a powerful tool for private sector growth and the emergence of new African champions.
This seventh edition also saw the launch of the AFRICA CEO NETWORK – the first digital community of influential business leaders on the continent – and the Family Business Initiative for African family businesses.
In 2018, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group and the leading international institution providing private-sector development assistance in emerging countries, became the co-host of the AFRICA CEO FORUM. This partnership has gone from strength to strength. In an international context conducive to mobilizing private investment in Africa, it has allowed us to build public-private dialogue and create new opportunities for investors active on the continent.
Held in Abidjan in March 2018, this sixth edition brought together nearly 1,600 participants. Zimbabwean president Emmerson Mnangagwa made one of his first major public appearances at the Forum.
For its fifth anniversary, the AFRICA CEO FORUM brought together nearly 1,200 business leaders, investors and public-sector decision-makers in Geneva, where the participants included the presidents of Ghana and Senegal. At the forefront of the debates were the changes needed to restore a high and sustainable growth rate after two years of sharp economic slowdown on the continent.
Convinced that a greater representation of women in business is crucial to the prosperity of the African private sector, the AFRICA CEO FORUM dedicated its 2017 edition to the role of women in African businesses, launching its African Women in Business initiative at the Forum. With a high-level panel of the most influential women in the African private sector, a presentation of the findings of McKinsey’s ‘Women Matter Africa’ report, and a series of collaborative workshops, the AFRICA CEO FORUM actively contributed to implementing solid solutions for improving gender diversity.