"Developed Africa Executive summart"
Commercializing Development Opportunities in Africa INTRODUCTION Developed Africa is an online resource which will allow international companies unprecedented access to commercial development opportunities in African countries. This resource will be valuable not only to companies already operating in Africa, but also to those companies looking to move into this expanding market. Companies seeking access to these opportunities will be charged a fee for registration on developedafrica.com. The African organizations which will populate this database of opportunities will not be charged a fee, to encourage maximum participation across the continent. Engaging the African diaspora and others with a strong interest in Africa is a vital element in marketing the Developed Africa project. Engagement with the website and through social media will encourage members of these constituencies to feel engaged with the process, raising Developed Africa’s profile and generating ‘buy in’ from these influential groups. This will be accomplished through the free distribution of information about available funding, events, news and data and through effective use of social media and the Developed Africa website. Developed Africa will source from its users: A database of opportunities which can be filtered by a number of different criteria to match suppliers’ capacity. A database of international companies and other organizations seeking business in African countries, either in the provision of goods or services or through investment. A database of members of the African diaspora and others interested in Africa. Information on funding available for African organizations and organizations seeking to work or invest in Africa. Information about events focusing on Africa. Information aggregated from news sources and international agencies providing a comprehensive source for news and data about African countries. Members of Developed Africa will be able to upgrade their membership to receive premium services. The dynamic nature of these databases and their availability linked together in one location will make this website a first port of call for organisations interested in development opportunities across Africa. 1 Commercializing Development Opportunities in Africa THE OPPORTUNITY Seven of the ten fastest growing economies over the last ten years were in Africa. Despite this, Africa attracts less than 5 per cent of global FDI, which does not reflect the fact that investments in Africa have a higher rate of return than any others. From 2003 to 2010 inter-African FDI grew by 21 per cent. Emerging economies, including other African ones, are significantly more ready to invest in African opportunities than developed ones, particularly the economies of Europe. Because of its exceptional investment potential, global FDI into African countries is set to reach $150bn annually by 2015. Apart from the extractive industries, satisfying African commercial needs tends to be positioned by the providers as ‘doing Africa a favour’, creating an adverse bias both in terms of results and of expectations. Adverse bias, a lack of contacts and local knowledge hold back many companies from taking advantage of the opportunities that are available. This is particularly true for small and medium enterprises. developedafrica.com will address these problems by providing a vehicle to properly commercialize development opportunities in Africa. This process will be accomplished by consolidating the efforts from a diverse group of organizations and individuals to accelerate development in Africa, provide a better link between African development needs and the solutions to those needs, and to generate commercial and employment opportunities. These commercial opportunities will be provided by local stakeholders in public, private and not- for-profit organisations and will be organised by country, by sector and by funding requirements. Registering these opportunities will be free. 2 Commercializing Development Opportunities in Africa HOW IT WORKS Users of the website will be required to register as one of the following types of user. Provider of opportunities: These are the people who are encouraged to put their specific development opportunities and needs on the site and will include African community representatives, entrepreneurs and locally based businesses as well as NGOs, IGOs, charities, and government agencies. After they have registered, they will be able to provide a detailed summary of any projects they want to post to the website. This will include any evidence they have of its viability or the existing support it enjoys, as well as a business plan and other relevant details. Initial access to the website is free to Providers. Suppliers and Investors: These are providers of fulfilment services such as project management firms, engineering and construction businesses and international sources of investment, which may include investment managers, fund managers, IGO funding, and international aid providers. When suppliers and investors register to become members they provide their company details (including staff numbers and business areas) and specify their particular interests (e.g. regions; sectors; project size), and then pay a fee to view opportunities posted to the site. Diaspora and Individual Members: The involvement of the diaspora of African nationals living and working outside their home countries is a crucial aspect of developing the website as the premier marketplace for genuine qualified projects, international suppliers and genuine potential investors. Individual members can receive notifications every time a new relevant investment opportunity is posted. This provides the opportunity to either to ‘give back’ to their homeland with meaningful investment numbers or to kick start projects by ‘crowdsourcing’ them as actual investors with an on-going financial interest in their progress either as shareholders or investors – in projects that owing to the combination and concentration of effort have the advantages of size, specificity, measurability and visibility. 3 Commercializing Development Opportunities in Africa THE DEVELOPED AFRICA PROCESS Registration: New users provide relevant details about their business and interests. Payment: Registered suppliers pay to access the database based on their size. Login: Fully registered users sign in with a unique ID and password. Custom Searching: Automatic Matching: Users are able to search the entire Users are shown opportunities which database by a range of criteria. best suit their business and interests. Contacting Providers: Users can contact providers of opportunities found in the database. Opportunity Completion: Completed projects are shown on the profile of providers and suppliers. 4 Commercializing Development Opportunities in Africa THE DEVELOPED AFRICA CONCEPT Opportunity Providers: Organisations who have information about development opportunities. Opportunities Database: Populated by providers with qualified development opportunities. Investment Providers: Diaspora and Others: Provide funding to unfunded projects Provide funding to unfunded projects by negotiation with providers. to providers by crowdsourcing. Funded Opportunities: Projects for which funding is available for project fulfilment. Suppliers of Services: Companies looking to work with providers on funded opportunities. Opportunity Completion: Development opportunities in Africa are fulfilled by suppliers. 5