The trio of Olusola Teniola, immediate past President of the Association of Telecom Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), Akin Naphtal, ICT event planner and Segun Oruame, tech enthusiast has unveiled the Africa Digital Economy Forum (ADEF), a non-profit initiative geared towards the realisation of full digitization of Africa’s economies.
The launch is geared towards meeting the need for digitization of economies globally, particularly in Africa.
According to Olusola Teniola, Co-Founder/President of ADEF, African countries are making transitions to becoming technology-enabled economies with the rush of investments that have been witnessed in the last two decades.
“The continent has witnessed a rush of investments, policies and regulations targeted to improving the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) infrastructure environment. By consensual estimate, Africa’s digital economy will hover over USD$300 billion by 2025,” he said.
He believes that Africa is on the verge of new unfettered opportunities leveraging technology and innovation – fully capitalizing on the expected boom in the Digital Economy.
The Africa Digital Economy Forum ( ADEF) is opened to local and international individuals and organizations that play in the digital technology space state and non-state C-level executives in the digital sector.
The ADEF, which draws outstanding support from across the continent, will drive digitization across the continent through four channels, namely Intelligence, Advocacy, Campaigning and Fundraising.
Via Intelligence, ADEF will promote and conduct strategic research in areas of the Digital Economy as they reflect its overall goal and vision for the African continent. The ADEF will carry out research to positively and sustainably impact the largest number of people; and to influence the adoption and scale-up of high-impact, cost-effective programs and policies in Digital Economy settings.
Through Advocacy, ADEF will work with other stakeholders to advocate for right policies, causes and actions on issues pertaining to the promotion of the digital economy across the continent in line with our mission and vision.
ADEF will also conduct a variety of campaigning or awareness efforts designed around our programmes and objectives on achieving a sustainable and beneficial digital economy in Africa. The campaign will involve physical, real-life events, real-life or virtual symposia, workshops, letters to government officials, press releases, email or social media campaigns.
Lastly, ADEF will work with other stakeholders to advocate for the right policies, causes and actions on issues pertaining promotion of the digital economy across the continent in line with our mission and vision.
To fully tap into these opportunities, the ADEF believes the continent must rework its policy and regulatory frameworks to provide the required sustainable environment for new ICT investment that will enhance connectivity, create innovative enterprises, provide digital skills, and generally improve the lives of over 1.5 billion Africans,” the president explained.
The Founding CEO, Mr. Akin Naphtal, added that the ADEF is the common platform for technology and service providers focusing on the transformative powers of Africa’s steadily growing and booming digital economy.
According to Co-founder, Olusegun Oruame, “Africa’s ability to leapfrog and be part of 4IR rests on the digital economy. ADEF provides a networking and advocacy platform to engage and collaborate with other stakeholders including governments, the private sector, academia, national and international bodies, etc. ADEF offers that critical mass of knowledge to promote frameworks to maximize the potential dividends of a thriving digital economy beneﬁcial to all Africans.”
With a mission statement that talks about a commitment to the expansion of connectivity, access to affordable data, promotion of innovation and full digitization of African nations’ economies as the basis for development and a vision statement of leveraging media to expand opportunities in the digital economy for Africans, ADEF is focused on the full realization of digitization of Africa’s economies. All stakeholders in the ICT space are welcome to be a part of this initiative.