Advice to invest in Africa

Article Originally Published in Africa from Africa by África Ariño. Check the original Article and the blog here.

The other day, I attended a panel discussion on “The global strategic landscape.” Panelists were members of IESE’s International Advisory Board. Among them, Ibukun Awosika, founder and CEO The Chair Center Group, and Chairperson of the First Bank of Nigeria. I thought of sharing with you some of her advice for foreign companies willing to invest in Africa:

  • Do not come with solutions but ready to engage with others to find solutions: reengage the minds of the African population to solve their problems.
  • You need local partnerships: coming from the outside, you’ll find a few things that will challenge your business model.
  • You can’t have a short-term goal: you need patience for the investment to mature or for the industry to settle – in fact, you may need to help shape the industry.
  • Know the values of where you are: if you want to build for the long term, you can’t just focus on the economic factor – you also need to facilitate social engagement.

Her last words were a great synthesis of her message: To create economic value, create value for the people, and then they will support you.

I love it when I hear African business people send messages that resonate with those in this blog:


Africa Ariño

By Africa Ariño, professor in the Strategic Management Department at IESE Business School. Dr. Ariño received her Ph.D. in Management from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).


Cover Photo: Investing in Africa: Port Infrastructure. Tuscor LLoyds