infoDev’s 4th Global Forum on Innovation & Entrepreneurship

May 13, 2010 at 2:24 pm | Posted in AIN, Economic Development, networking | 1 Comment
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infoDev’s 4th Global Forum on Innovation & Entrepreneurship, in cooperation with the Government of Finland, will be held in Helsinki, Finland on May 30 – June 2, 2011.

Building on its legacy of Global Forums held in India in 2004 and 2006, and in Brazil in 2009, infoDev announced that dates for the 4th Global Forum on Innovation & Entrepreneurship have been confirmed and welcomes you to Helsinki, Finland for another exciting global gathering on May 30 – June 2, 2011.

With its strong national innovation policy and strategic international networks, coupled with the country’s – Living Lab – concept to bring together private and public sector actors on the innovation agenda, Finland presents a stimulating platform for infoDev’s global community of innovation & entrepreneurship practitioners, thought-leaders, stakeholders and donors.

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AIN DURBAN UPDATE

April 12, 2010 at 8:05 am | Posted in AIN, Economic Development, incubation, incubator, networking, Online Community | Leave a comment
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This bunch of AIN delegates were the first of three visiting parties to tour SmartXchange and to get an inside track from Robynne and Rajesh as to how the incubator is so successful with their ICT clients and sponsors.

SmartXchange Visit
SmartXchange Visit AIN delegates

 

Thanks to John for sending us the photo to share with you all. 
SMARTXCHANGE APPROACH
SMARTXCHANGE APPROACH

AIN Durban has top billing in this months infoDEV news on www.idisc.net.

We also have increased our AIN subscribers [+21%], profiled members [+70%] and identified incubation locations [+18%] during the aftermath of the Conference.
AIN on YouNoodle 
pre-conf=502 subscribers 77 profiles 
post-conf= 608 [+21%]subscribers 131 profiles [+70%]

AIN on LinkedIN 
pre-conf=144 profiles, 
post-conf=157 profiles [+9%]

Mapped African Incubators
pre-conf=143 locations, 
post-conf=169 locations [+18%]
Thanks to all of you who have updated your profiles and alerted us to additional incubators and support initiatives sub Sahara!
 
PS WE HAVE GONE BACK THROUGH THE CONFERENCE eDIARY AND REFRESHED ALL THE LINKAGES TO THE SPEAKERS PRESENTATIONS. enjoy!!

AIN April Newsletter brings visitors to our Blog

March 30, 2010 at 7:21 pm | Posted in AIN, networking, Online Community | Leave a comment
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Guid evening fellow incubation professionals   

Tonight we celebrate achieving 600 AIN subscribers – thank you all for following our progress. Let us target 1000 before the end of June 2010? Please invite your colleagues to register on our AIN on YN portal.   

The delivery yesterday of our April Newsletter has immediately increased the number of visitors coming to read our eDiary of events in Durban. As we can see below, this is good.    

AIN blog

AIN blog visitors

 

On the other hand we can also see that the majority of people are reluctant to comment or post.    

So we have the dilemma – which is more interesting to listen to? A monologue or a dialogue?    

AIN Visitors

AIN Visitors - March 2010

What causes a person to engage and share their thoughts before they leave the room – or upon reflection come back in to add value to the conversation.  By making even one comment you can make a difference.    

Interesting and rich exchanges will also encourage our members to subscribe to this blog – keen to keep abreast of knowledge exchanges and current thinking.    

How can we continue where we all left off a week past Friday in Durban? Which topics do you feel need more insight and support?    

PS our weather warnings tonight tell of blizzards and snow 12″-15″ here by early morning. I am heading back to Durban……….

Links to eDiary of the AIN Conference sessions and events

March 29, 2010 at 2:51 pm | Posted in AgriTech, AIN, Business Support, Economic Development, ICT, incubation, incubator, networking, Online Community, startup, Tools | Leave a comment
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You can just keep scrolling down and go back through time – OR you can click on the links to go straight to your session or event of choice.  As expressed in our newsletter to all AIN subscribers today, please add your comments, observations, tuppence worth and photos.
 
Pre Conference Journey I left home at 8am Sunday 14th to travel from Edinburgh to Durban (RSA). It was 6 deg C……..DAY 1 Welcome to all – Official opening
Session 1 Our international Perspective of incubation in Africa
Session 2
  Role of Incubation in Local Economic Development
SABTIA AGM  A look on the inside
Official Welcome Reception on the harbour front – POINT Yacht Club, Durban [I forgot to take my camera :(( – please post your photos ]DAY 2
Session 1   Women Youth and Rural Incubation 
Session 2  Good Practices and Economies of Scale 
& Session 3     Technology Incubation 
Gala Evening Dinner and entertainment  Dignitaries and Divas 
DAY 3
Touring Durban & award-winning Incubators
 
 
 

AIN Conference Durban, Tuesday 16th March 2010

March 23, 2010 at 10:03 am | Posted in AgriTech, AIN, Business Support, Economic Development, ICT, incubation, incubator, Online Community, startup, Tools | Leave a comment
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AIN  

I left home at 8am Sunday 14th to travel from Edinburgh to Durban (RSA). It was 6 deg C. 

It was my first ever flights with Emirates and I will definitely use them again if the opportunity arises. Dubai is a stunning airport terminal with every facility you could wish for to pamper your needs. 

Touched down safely and smoothly but somewhat tired at in Durban 6pm local time on Monday evening after international transfers at Manchester and Dubai. Local temperature was a magical 26 deg C!! 

The Airport was busy. This is clearly a World Cup venue as I read all the advertising on display. Pity I am 82 days early and Scotland did not qualify. I am not allowed to say “Anyone but England” as that is deemed to be racist here in UK!! Well we can but hope – “”Come oan South Africa“” we will be watching every move? 

BTW What is this Fitba’ Friday thingie I hear people speaking aboot? (Sorry I do lapse into my Scots vernacular when I start to get excited.) 

Wow – the AIN conference is up on the adverts too – well done Pat & Zama @ ProactivePR. 

AIN conference 2010 

Don’t ya just luv that logo………growing Africa through incubation – yup that works for me. 

At breakfast on Tuesday I met Dr Mbarou Mbaye from Senegal one of the AIN committee members. I had previously talked with Mbarou via Skype so I already knew she is on the infoDEV global research Study team – incubator support for women into business. More on that topic later. 

Delegates continued to appear at our beautiful new venue Coastlands upon the Ridge during Tuesday – early for the conference which was due to start on the Wednesday. I find lasting and effective relationships often start with chance meetings during the times before during and after these collaborative events and today was no exception. 

In no particular order I met Dr. Julie Momah from the Technology Incubation Centres, Nigeria, Ms. Valerie da Costa, head of infoDEV, Steve Giddings, Regional Facilitator, Jill Sawers, InfoDEV Consultant and Ellen Olafsen, Operations Officer from infoDEV. 

InfoDEV support has been crucial and a catalyst and attractor for leveraging government and regional funding much of what has happened to grow AIN to this point – our third Annual Conference in Southern Africa. 

Chris

Chris

 

Another AIN committee member from Bandwidth Barn in Cape Town, CEO , Chris Vermuelen, arrived and we shared experiences on running competitions to select entrepreneurs suitable for incubation support and facilitation. I know he burned the the midnight oil Tuesday/Wednesday to make sure all the entries for the Cape competition were compliant as the 17th was the closing day for entries. Who says men can’t multi-task? 

The BWB Cisco online Entrepreneurial programme has just launched and sounds really good. It is a new exciting initiative for sub Saharan Africa! Good on you Chris. 

Jayesh Ravjee from STP / SABTIA and Michael Reddy FURNTECH /AIN hosted an informal evening meeting to welcome the infoDEV and AIN team members to Durban and to share progress on all fronts – Sub Sahara in advance of the Conference. 

Compared to other regional business incubation networks we are coming from behind. We have just reached 500+ subscribers for our Newsletter, while infoDEV have 5000 subscribers world-wide. Pulling our socks up with this conference is a timely and welcome shot in the arm for everyone interested in making a difference within Africa. 

infoDEV Nokia

infoDEV & Nokia partners

 

For their part Valerie gave us a good heads up, prior to her leading presentation in the morning. The “ink is still wet” on infoDEV’s recently agreed 2 year €11.9 million programme “Creating Sustainable Businesses in the Knowledge Economy” with support from Nokia and the Government of Finland. This will target Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe with particular support for countries including Cambodia (initiatives to support women), Nepal, Mozambique, Tanzania and Vietnam (initiatives to support women). 

With 4.6 billion mobile users around the world today we have the world’s biggest platform for economic development. It can clearly be utilised to transform the ability of the illiterate and computer-less population within developing world giving unfettered access to support within rural and urban communities. 

The recent Mobile Monday rollouts are a core part of raising awareness and the impact of mobile technology can have within Africa 

MobileMonday to launch chapters in Africa
09 Feb 2010 MobileMonday has announced the opening of chapters in Kampala, Uganda and Nairobi, Kenya. The Kampala chapter opens its doors on March 8, and the Nairobi chapter launches on March 11. A new South African chapter will also open in Capetown. After over a year of background work, the global organization formed a partnership with the World Bank to take the community’s concepts to several African countries. … 

and so to bed, my head reeling with new opportunities for sub Saharan Africa……….tomorrows conference launch awaited us.

Durban here we come!

March 4, 2010 at 10:48 am | Posted in Business Support, Economic Development, ICT, incubation | Leave a comment
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With over 100 attendees already registered this promises to be a great gathering of incubation professionals and supporters.

I am told the conference venue, up on the 6th floor, has stunning 360 degree views of Durban.

With 2 days packed with content and a trip to visit 3 exemplar incubators on the Friday we should have plenty of time for collaboration and sharing knowledge of what is working sub Sahara.

Addis Ababa, Feb 2010 –

February 23, 2010 at 9:52 am | Posted in AIN, Business Support, incubation | Leave a comment
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The meeting in Addis last week was a very successful.
The highlights of the meeting was the unanimous agreement that:

  1. AIN was the future of incubation in Africa and was therefore very necessary;
  2. A formal structure was essential to our sustainability;
  3. A workable action plan was necessary.

    Based on the above the representatives present elected Michael  as Chairperson and Julie Momah as Vice-Chairperson of AIN.
    Following this, they developed and committed themselves to a 12 month action plan.

Michael announced at the conclusion of the sessions – “We have set ourselves some challenging but very exciting goals and I am sure that the commitment shown by the team at the meeting will be the driving force in achieving our goals.
While the team came together and developed a plan going forward, I must express our gratitude to all those that have been involved in setting up and working with AIN since its inception. The foundation for the action plan that we developed in based on the sterling work that these pioneers put in and that we hope that they will continue to contribute to AIN.

In this respect special mention must be made of the efforts of Steve, Leon and David. On behalf of the new team I thank you and I know that we can count on your continued support.
My apologies if I missed anyone but we thank everyone for their contributions.”

Note:
The AIN Team includes Michael, Julie, Jayesh Ravjee [Past Chair], Chris Vermeulen, Tessema Geda, Rajeev Aggraval, & Mbarou Gassama Mbaye.

InfoDev – Ellen Olafson & Steve Giddings
SEDA – Jayesh Ravjee
AIN Webmaster – David Cromar

AIN on WordPress!

February 15, 2010 at 5:20 pm | Posted in AIN, ICT, incubation, Online Community, Tools | 2 Comments
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Welcome to the blog page for the African Incubator Network. Our webmaster and editor for this blog is David Cromar.

Looking forward to meeting everyone in Durban for the 2010 Conference. Registrations are still open until the 27th February.

BTW our knowledge sharing portal can be accessed via www.ainportal.org .

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