The first Coworking Africa conference organized on the African continent is to be held in Cape Town, South Africa, on July 23rd and 24th, at the East City Studio. From 80 to 100 attendees are expected from all around Africa.
Global Enterprise and Cape Town Office have partnered up to create the Coworking Africa conference 2015, an insightful event to investigate the rise of Coworking in Africa, the impact this movement can have on entrepreneurship, innovation and, overall, on economical development.
The Coworking Africa 2015 conference is a unique opportunity to share knowledge, success stories and experiences in the field of Coworking space management and unfolding. Moreover, the conference aims at facilitating the emergence personal relationships between the leaders of coworking communities from all over the African continent.
By having a coworking conference to Africa, the initiators of the conferences hope to support the development of an African coworking awareness as well as a link between coworking communities on the continent in order to bring Africa in a global move from which we all can end better off.
Coworking, natural environment of modern startups/freelancers
Building a network of trust and knowledge sharing between Coworking communities benefits to all the players, as it has been demonstrated in Europe (Coworking Europe) and in North America (GCUC) the last five years. Thanks to the Coworking conferences, thousands of Coworking spaces communities around the wold are in touch with one another. Connections between local communities of freelancers, entrepreneurs and innovators, stimulates collaborations, exchanges, social and business opportunities for members, nearby or on the international playground.
Everywhere in the world, Coworking spaces are becoming the bedrocks of local ecosystems of entrepreneurs shaping the future of modern, digital friendly, tech-savvy economies.
Aside the great deal of independent stand alone Coworking spaces, players such as business incubators, corporations or development agencies or universities have opened or are opening up Coworking spaces. Startup Acceleration programs take place in Coworking spaces.
Furthermore, the members of the fast expanding freelancers generation find in Coworking spaces a natural biotope to operate, network and grow their business, supported by communities of peers. According to estimations from Deskmag, in 2018, worldwide, more than 2,3 millions freelancers will work from coworking spaces.
A global surge in which Africa has a role to play
Africa is part of this global move.
Although, in 2015, the number of Coworking spaces in operation in Africa is lower than in areas such as Europe or the US, the growth forecasts follow the same trend as elsewhere on the planet. In addition, let’s say that nowhere on Earth, the popping up of Coworking spaces is more critical for wealth creation, social and economical development than in Africa.
Coworking spaces offer connectivity solutions in local areas and a proper work infrastructure, for a more affordable price than traditional offices, especially in African cities where the cost of the real estate is unaffordable for a huge majority of the population. Coworking spaces concentrate digital resources and help to bring peer to peer support, visibility and networking opportunities.
They bridge local community of entrepreneurs and freelancers with other communities and potential customers elsewhere in Africa or in the world. This way, Coworking spaces can play a key role in connecting small businesses in Africa with international markets and the latest innovations.
Addressing the specific challenges Coworking faces in Africa
Africa is ready for a rapid unfolding of the Coworking landscape in the coming years, as observed elsewhere. However, as mentioned, the reality of the continent and the challenges faced by Coworking spaces operators and initiators in Africa are specific.
The Coworking Africa 2015 conference intends to spot and to address these specific challenges, bearing in mind that Africa is huge and very diverse. The event will also bring the opportunity to the African attendees to get in touch with experienced Coworking practitioners from outside Africa, who will supply them with their insights and advices.
The audience of the conference is expected to be made out of Coworking space operators from across the continent, startup accelerators, digital infrastructure builders, real estate pundits, NGO’s, universities or incubator managers from Africa and beyond.
Ubongo Kids is an interactive edu-cartooon that teaches math through fun animated stories and catchy original songs, and broadcasts on TV across East Africa. It's watched by over 900,000 weekly viewers in Tanzania. Students can interact live via SMS, answering questions while they watch and getting personalized feedback from their favorite cartoon characters. We want to transform learning for the 440 million under 16’s in Africa by bringing them a fun new way to learn, that opens the door to a future of digital learning.
Learn more visit ubongo.co.tz
There are many different apps that children can play with that are fun and educational such as apps that are put out by PBS and Nickelodeon. Now there is a new app on the block that is educational and inspirational for African children everywhere. It is a storybook game where there are a series of characters and adventures along the way. The main character is Ameka Love who is trying to get to Crystal Mountain. She brings kids on a colorful journey that teaches them about life and helps them to have a little fun along the way.
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By Angela Wills
The technology platform has provided many ways for all ages to enhance their knowledge in one form or another. Almost every family has some outlet that bridges them to one or more sources of technology, such as smartphones, laptops, tablets, or other devices. One of the greatest contributions on the smart circuit comes in the form of apps that help to enhance the knowledge of young children. Here are 4 apps that could contribute positively to your child’s knowledge of Black history.
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Six years ago, tech entrepreneur Tristan Walker left Wall Street for Silicon Valley with a goal in mind.
"I saw that there were other 24 year olds, not only making millions of dollars, but also fundamentally changing the world," the 30-year old told CNBC's On the Money in an interview. "I knew I wanted to be part of that and I tried everything I could to be a part of it."
After graduating from Stanford Business School, Walker started his successful rise through the often insular world of Silicon Valley. After stops at Foursquare and venture capital giant Andreessen Horowitz, the New York City native founded his own startup, Walker & Company Brands.
He's launched his company in the tech capital with a new product that, at first glance, seems low-tech and old-fashioned: A new single-blade razor.
Called "Bevel", the razor was designed with a specific benefit for a target audience, those prone to shaving irritation and razor bumps.
"Up to 80 percent of black men and women have this issue because we have course curly hair," Walker said. "And 30 percent of men and women of other races have this issue as well."
Tristan Walker says he founded his company with the mission of "developing a suite of brands the solve problems for people of color."
He says the Bevel razor is "the first manifestation of that vision." Walker & Company Brands is developing future products to address issues such as Vitamin D deficiency, hyper-pigmentation and natural hair transitioning, he added.
Silicon Valley investors have responded. Walker & Company Brands has raised more than nine million dollars in startup funding. That includes investment from his former employers at Andreessen Horowitz, where he was "Entrepreneur-In-Residence."
Recent headlines have revealed and criticized tech companies in Silicon Valley for not providing access to, or hiring, minorities and women. At his own company, Walker says he is focused on eradicating what he calls "implicit bias."
When he's looking to hire a new employee, Walker asks investors to broaden their search. "Before you think of who can fill this role, think about women or folks of color who would excel." He says that's led to his firm being staffed by a majority of women and people of color.
Positioned in the personal grooming and beauty products market as "a company that solves problems", Walker says he has no plans to seek a buyout or sell the company. Instead, he wants to remain independent.
"It would be my biggest joy to have Walker & Company outlast me," adding that his company is serving the fastest growing demographic in the country.
"Our opportunity is significant, and for us to give up on that…would be a shame."
This article is taken from CNBC
Comic Republic, a Nigerian comics startup based in Lagos, is creating a universe of superheroes for Africans and black readers around the world. The cast of characters—”Africa’s Avengers” according to some fans—ranges from Guardian Prime, a 25-year old Nigerian fashion designer by day who uses his extraordinary strength to fight for a better Nigeria, to Hilda Avonomemi Moses, a woman from a remote village in Edo state who can see spirits, and Marcus Chigozie, a privileged but angry teenager who can move at supersonic speeds.
"I thought about when I was young and what I used to make my decisions on: What would Superman do, what would Batman do? I thought, why not African superheroes?"
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Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg's visit to Nigeria, his first to sub-Saharan Africa, has put the country's tech businesses firmly in the world's spotlight.
Zuckerberg staged a surprise visit to the country's economic capital Lagos on Tuesday and his first stop was a local innovation center and tech hub in Yaba, an area on the mainland of Lagos known as Nigeria's Silicon Valley.
There was no fanfare amid tight security and some of those working at the Co-Creation Hub, called CcHUB, didn't even know Zuckberg was coming.
He appeared nervous, a little startled even, as he launched into an impromptu speech about why he was there.
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Facebook’s billionaire founder was after the crown jewel in East and Central Africa’s most profitable company, Safaricom: M-Pesa. Dressed characteristically nonchalantly in a grey T-shirt and blue jeans, Mr Zuckerberg laid out his intentions plainly. “I am here to learn about mobile money.” And to drive the point home to a group of star-struck journalists and start-up founders on the second floor of Nairobi’s Bishop Magua building, Zuckerberg gently alluded to Kenya’s wilful blindness. “For folks who spend a lot of time in the entrepreneurial ecosystem here [in Kenya], it may be hard to appreciate just how advanced the Kenyan system is over others, and I think there are a lot of lessons we can learn to help build services for people in the rest of the world,” he said.
Kenyans depend and spend on M-Pesa with a frequency that is often forgotten.
Last year, Sh14 billion was transacted through M-Pesa. Every day. To put this amount in context, what Kenyans transact in just three days would be more than enough to build another Thika superhighway.
This disruption of the financial and payments system is M-Pesa’s greatest selling point, and is likened to US Silicon Valley disrupters Uber (transport), Airbnb (accommodation) and Facebook (social interaction). In the last decade, Facebook has moved from a web platform that allows friends and families to keep in touch and share what is happening in their lives, to a company that seeks to exploit the future needs of social network users. Zuckerberg’s most expensive acquisitions, like Instagram, WhatsApp, and Oculus VR, are geared towards linking the social network platform to photo-sharing, instant messaging and virtual reality, respectively.
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