Acceptance of the Digital Growth in Africa to Be A Global Leader
William Jackson, M.Ed.
Let The Bible Speak TV #LTBSTV
The pandemic has been disruptive globally and disrupted
the growth and stability of businesses globally. The United
States has projections that up to 60% of small and medium
businesses will close permanently directly affecting the
economic growth and stability of local neighborhoods and
communities. Living in Jacksonville, Florida in an area
called Lakewood there have been upwards of 7 if not more
small to medium businesses that have closed thus far and
the spirit of the community is changing. It seems like
the life is being drained from it.
The closure of these businesses will have economic effects
on the communities they are in and a gradual spread of
economic issues will expand as workers that are unemployed,
under employed, cannot pay rents, mortgages, car payments,
utilities and even shopping for food.
The human tragedy will grow.
Unemployment statistics are rising faster than the rates of
the Great Depression in comparisons show that once
businesses are closed they will never return. Already larger
corporations are filing for bankruptcy to protect assets and
the investments that stockholders have put in to build
viable business interests that are not fading away.
The ramifications will be felt locally then nationally as
monies are not available to provide tax payments that support
services that support communities and cities. When compared
globally countries around the world are strategically changing
their business models. The African continent has experienced
economic shifts in the beginning of the pandemic, business
leaders have looked at how they can strategically change
their business models to support businesses at all levels.
Decisions are difficult, African business leaders have made
rapid changes that are increasingly solid and foundational
to saving many business that are small and medium. The
United States model of hands-off and offering loans, grants
is not helping small and medium businesses because of the
processes put in place are not beneficial to smaller
and medium business owners.
African Tech Startups are still growing even during a pandemic
because African businesses are providing services that Africans
need and collaboration is available.
The original thought was that funding’s would drop, which they
did as a result of the COVID19 crisis. To help Startups adjust
they were told to continue to develop their ideas and make
adjustable terms when asking for investments and funding.
Even if it would slow growth, but slow growth is better than
The annual African Tech Startups Funding Report from Disrupt
Africa showed that startups on the continent of Africa in
January thru March raised totals. In US dollars $100 million
in funding even though there was a big decline of investments
there are signs of rapid recovery.
COVID19 still presents a change and challenge in economic
recovery, because attitudes of investors are still cautious.
This does not stop African digital innovators, African
content creators and STREAM advocates still following their
dreams to start their businesses. Looking for ways to provide
a needed service that is cost effective and sustainable in
The wonderful news to African business owners is that some
investors remain active throughout this pandemic crisis
and African business startups have avenues to go if they
need additional funding. Many investors are already looking
past the pandemic unlike American and even British businesses
that are looking at bailouts, safeguards, bankruptcy strategies
and quick sales of all or portions of the business to keep alive.
Too many global businesses like those in the US and Britain
are not looking at the well-being of their employees and throwing
them to unemployment lines, food-lines, potential for homelessness
and even families going hungry. African businesses are putting in
strategies that help build adjustments to save small and medium
Systems set in place in Africa are not perfect, because many
small and medium businesses do not have a relationship with
banks and cannot apply for loans, grants and other services.
So those older businesses that are private and even family owned
face closure and will affect families because they are family
Even though some of the economic news is dire the year of 2020
is still on course to beat last year’s record and become the best
yet for investment into African tech startups, and more opportunities
will be done over the course of the year. The simple fact of the
matter is that plenty of investors have funds that need to be invested
and waiting for the right business model to invest and watch those
The pandemic shows that intellectualism matters, business
networking matters, building a professional learning network
matters, collaboration matters and helping people humanely
and humanistically matters. African businesses see the need
to help the people of Africa in their respective nations,
communities and neighborhood.
Africa is learning from the United States financial decisions what
not to do and what the political administrations are not following
American models of leadership. Doing some research of investment
leaders I found information about Zachariah George, chief investment
officer at Startupbootcamp Africa. He is a principal at Nedbank
Venture Capital, he states “So any VC fund in Africa that was raised
in 2017 or later and there are plenty of them given that the African
VC industry is only seven to-eight years old at best.”
That means that VC’s have cash to invest, they just need to be
impressed by digital innovators to see the value in their ideas.
Investing through the crisis, African startups still have places
to go during COVID-19 African technology startups have a better
chance of funding than many American technology startups.
Historically those businesses during extreme disasters with
vision benefit because they attack the issues and problems of
the times and fill a gap.
They are unique, diversified in their services and know that even
during disasters like a pandemic this is the time to expand,
collaborate, invest, build, create and grow.
African businesses that are small, medium and large need to take
advantage of any and all business Zoom meetings, GotoMeetings,
Webinars and digital workshops to build their network, build
relationships with potential Venture Capitalists, banks and the
diversity of investors. Using the Internet to research more about
how to seek investors, how to prepare a business during hard
economic times and what businesses may be more stable and surviving.
As a blogger and content creator I encourage African small and
medium business owners to research VC firms to find resources
to keep them going, expand or even tech companies to seek additional
investments. As an educator of STREAM, I’m not a financial expert,
strategist nor advisor just providing encouragement, opportunities
and inspiration to follow their dreams even in a pandemic.
There are always risks with investments during challenging times
like this pandemic so African business owners need to be sure they
have done their homework and research. To follow reliable and
and trusted advisors.
The flexibility of technology allows for flexibility in seeking
funding, investments, collaborations and even partnerships. Africa
is growing to be a technological powerhouse by providing training’s,
workshops, classes and conferences for youth, teens and young adults
that will be future leaders for Africa. These youth, teens and young
adults will provide STREAM, Technology-driven and real world solutions
that have the potential to be great investments.
This pandemic has created a need to change the thinking of African
investing by bankers, insurers, VC and governments. There is more
optimism on the continent being shown from collaborations with China
and even future investments by Mexico, Canada, Japan and other European
markets that are locking out the United States not just because of the
pandemic, but because of slanderous words and disrespectful behaviors
toward African, Indian and nations of color by the American administration.
As an educator, content creator, sponsor of technology conferences and
advocate for African educational growth and ministry the existing calamity
has many challenges, and the opportunities at hand for investments far
outweigh the challenges, and many investors are excited about the unique
opportunities to invest in businesses on the African continent.
The best investment is in education, teaching youth, teens and young adults
to be engaged in as many educational activities as possible. Nations that
build their youth of all cultures to be the leaders needed for the future
will be leaders. Many nations in Africa like Nigeria are expanding their
access to the Internet, mobile devices are growing in numbers in Africa
that out grow even the United States and Canada. With mobile technology
small and emerging business owners can begin to compete even on a small
Starting is important, youth, teens and young adults that are web developers,
coders, digital innovators, artists and mixologist for musical groups and
singers are making changes to industries that need the infusion of new ways
to attract generations to listen to new forms of music and
even the movie industry.
There is a mounting influx of digital technologies developing in Africa
that are embedding themselves in the lifestyles of people. Africa is
slowing becoming the next digital influence of the world. African
people cannot allow foreign nations to come in and steal their innovators,
creatives and intellectuals. Africa must never allow another nation to
take away their indigenous intellectual innovators or put them away so
someone else can take credit for what Africans are developing.
The act of Blogging is still a form of storytelling, sharing thoughts
ideas, mental projections that inspire African people to grow and
Webster’s dictionary describes blogging as, “diary: a personal
chronological log of thoughts published on a Web page.” Africans
have been rapidly moving into the digital age that is embracing
cosmopolitan ideas and multicultural collaborations with the
help of technology. The inclusiveness of technology is taking
many into the 21st century where they are connecting
to the world.
Blog (weblog) technology is web based and inclusive to all people
regardless of color and culture thus allowing a explosion of
ideas and intellectual exchanges that carry on the tradition of
intellectual growth that developed at the time of Timbuktu and
other areas of Africa where there were universities
and places of study way before Europe itself started reading.
There is an estimated 8 million bloggers in America (The State
of Blogging (2005), Pew Internet & American Life Project) but
Africa has double if not triple that number.
Change blends with the traditions of traditional living,
lifestyle and technology inclusion; technology is infused in
all aspects of life and is expanding daily. In order to compete
Africa need to accept change and embrace the execution of
productivity tools that are prevalent in the business and
educational world. Africa’s success is base on the education
of its boys and girls, men and women. It is a known fact that
when women are educated they will teach the village and all
will prosper and grow. Not to say that men do not teach,
but they set the foundation of growth, but sometimes do not
share and are selfish with their successes.
There is so much technology available in the African
infrastructure in business and even ministry that ministries
are offering technology classes. Businesses and schools of
secondary and higher education, the question is, are teachers
and business leaders being taught the appropriate use of these
technologies that are becoming relevant in the business and
Africans should be exposed to and using diverse technologies,
if not they may again be hindered by being unprepared to do
business on a global scale. The possibility of expanding and
encouraging knowledge, requiring the proficiency of reading
(literacy/comprehension) and writing (creative thought process).
Blogging requires the participation of writers and readers
involved in a symbiotic relationship that is dependent upon
each other. Statistically Africans are behind in technology
applications and implementation (digital divide) professionally
and educationally, but the potential to take charge is huge.
Blogging is a new world, a world of digitized created writings
on a multitude of subjects that readers can ravagely consume
and interactively respond to. Where does this help the African
business community when it comes to gaining new incites in
business and cultural awareness? The act of blogging opens doors
to avenues of business ventures to expand literary and
informational talents and understand the power of the
reader or audience.
Why is blogging important to African writers; because of the
wealth of information that is important to educational and
professional growth. Africans need to become aware of the
potential to expand their knowledge base locally and globally
in areas of politics, economics, business, medicine, education
and cultural diversity. Many that are blogging allow the
participants to be co-creators in this age of digital media
that is transforming social interaction, taking social n
etworking to new levels of cognitive growth not just empirical
information that is irrelevant and in some cases professionally
and socially detrimental.
Blogging is a new wave for cyber-publishing for Africans to
share their stories, ideas, passions, and in some cases rants
and raves. This media is not about complaining about perceived
or experienced injustices, although in the cases of social
injustices and be blogged about and are. The opportunities are
endless as to what a writer can do, what they can share and how
they can engage discussions.
Blogging instills creativity, empowerment and critical thinking
skills into people that allows for their talent in writing.
The very nature of the Internet is allowing African people to
not just retrieve information, but post information that may
compete with resources of traditional newspapers and magazines.
The capability for Africans to launch their own newspaper,
magazine, radio and even television shows at a very low cost
is within the grasps of a person with a computer that can support
this technology. If the mind-set does not change for many,
Africans will once again they maybe left out, disconnected and
have a limited impact to social, business and political issues.
African voices need to be heard like distant rumblings of
thunder that people listen to and respect.
African people must embrace technology and all that it has
to offer, all the possibilities of imagination, innovation,
self-empowerment, and cultural enhancement. Blogging is just
a tip of the digital iceberg. The Internet, Podcasting,
Micro-blogging, Video-blogging, Wikis and other forms of
communication are all interactive and self directed tools
that avail themselves to cognitive growth and connection
to multicultural awareness that is being embraced and
welcomed to all growing African communities. Technology is
about communication between peoples.
Let us start communicating and engaging creative skills in
our writing to inform and empower, go forth and Blog to build
a better and increasing intellectual Africa.
***This broadcast can be heard on
“Let The Bible Speak TV” Jos, Nigeria
for your listening pleasure and convenience.
Let The Bible Speak TV Jos, Nigeria is on Facebook
Mr. Jackson’s clothing coordinated by
Aida Correa, Love Built Life, LLC