DCA’s Sophia Bekele talks on Africa’s IT and Innovation at EurAfrican Forum

Sophia Bekele, founder of DCA Group, was recently invited to Portugal to give a high-level talk on IT and Innovation, organized under the Patronage of Portugal President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and moderated by  José Manuel Durão Barroso, EurAfrican Forum Chairman.

The forum was held at the Historic National Palácio in Cascais, Portugal.   

(TOP: Sophia Bekele – second from left – talks on Africa’s IT and Innovation panel at the EurAfrican Forum moderated by José Manuel Durão Barroso, EurAfrican Forum Chairman).

The forum was focused on discussing the key issues and challenges relating to Africa’s development and Europe’s role on this endeavour, showcase the huge investment opportunities in Africa for European investors and corporations and explore joint opportunities for business economic growth and social and human development.

Africa is primed to be one of the great economic success stories of this century. Incomes are rising. Investments in infrastructure and technology are accelerating growth across a range of industries.

It is also the continent with the youngest population. The current trend indicates that this figure will double by 2045, according to the 2012 African Economic Outlook report. Women are the often regarded as the economic engine of Africa, and their impact is accelerating.

Ms. Bekele who is listed as African Women to Watch, one of top two leading ladies in Africa’s ICT sector in 2013 by Bloomberg TV and a champion for bridging the digital divide was on the panel to discuss IT and Innovation. In her keynote she emphasized that

“Regarding technology and innovation, Africa is heavily focused on the apps economy, a gravitation towards mobile, cloud computing and internet of things (IOT). This is helped by the fact that women and youth are getting to be part of this innovation because of the work that organizations like DCA Trust is doing locally. As regards broadband in Africa, it is not so much the lack of connectivity but the quality of connectivity which needs to be improved.”

Cascais where the meeting was held is a cosmopolitan coastal suburb of the Portuguese capital and one of the richest municipalities in Portugal where DCA Group also visited.

The EurAfrica Forum also coincided with completion of a successful 3 month training of the Twenty Five (25) women selected from over three hundred applicants who benefited directly from the receiving training fund.

Bekele Presents the Miss.Africa Trophy to Mr. Ken Mwenda. Bekele also presented the Miss.Africa Trophy award to eMobilis Founder Mr. Ken Mwenda for his efforts and collaborations in making the Miss.Africa program a success. Ms. Bekele with Miss.Africa Trophy.

eMobilis was selected DCA Trust’s partner to deliver relevant, 21st century software development skills for bright young women in Kenya having emerged as the grand prize winner of the inaugural Miss.Africa Pan-African seed fund.

Ms. Bekele was invited to give the Awards.  Speaking at the App presentation and award giving ceremony event, Bekele congratulated the women who had completed the training and encouraged them to polish their apps. The students presented prototype mobile apps ranging from safety and crime prevention, health, education, fashion and child safety. The top 3 app developers also received mobile devices as prizes.

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