Sabre President and CEO Tom Klein recently participated in the first-ever, U.S. / Africa Leaders’ Summit, which was held in Washington DC on August 4-6. The event, hosted by U.S. President Barack Obama and attended by most of his Cabinet, brought together nearly 50 African heads of state as well as business leaders, development organizations and government officials for a three-day meeting that White House officials billed as the largest-ever gathering of African leaders in Washington.Along with more than 100 U.S. CEOs,Klein was among 300 leaders from Africa and the US representing businesses from the private and public sectors.
The objective of the Summit was to create a dialog and generate awareness around business development and global investments in Africa. The forum included prominent African stakeholders to discuss strategic topics related to Africa’s economic outlook and potential investment opportunities.
Africa is being recognized as a profitable market opportunity in the global economy today. Africa is home to six of the world’s ten fastest-growing economies. Moreover, the country’s GDP is expected to rise 6% annually over the next decade. Real income has increased more than 30% over the last 10 years, and many African governments are making investments that are improving millions of lives.
During his visit to D.C., Klein also participated in the U.S. – Africa Business Forum Google Hangout with President and CEO of Kenya Equity Bank Group, James Mwangi, to discuss how Africa’s young population (average age 25) is experiencing a faster adoption rate of new technologies. During the Hangout, Tom shared his perspective while attending the two-day Summit. “One of the reasons I came was because I wanted to hear firsthand from our counterparts in Africa about the opportunities.” Tom expressed, “It’s all about optimism and excitement regarding the future of Africa.”
Mwangi shared this optimism regarding the fast adoption rate of new technologies in Africa . “Africa is in the age of innovation” Mwangi said, “We’re seeking partnerships with America to provide us with tools that create solutions.”
The Africa Global Business Forum is a first-ever collaboration intended to connect high profile decision makers to explore and nurture new partnerships and opportunities. Visit the Africa Global Business Forum website for more information including a list of participants and topics or visit the Bloomberg Philanthropies YouTube Channel to view excerpts from the forum and Google Hangout interviews.