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GBF Africa 2019: What to Expect from Dubai’s Global Business Forum

With a new edition coming in November, it’s a matter of time until the Global Business Forum Africa (AKA: GBF Africa) starts sweeping the headlines of Business magazines. The new edition scopes the growth of start-ups and small entrepreneurs in Africa, proposing meetings between investors and possible partners. The conference also seeks to facilitate relations between African companies and Dubai. 

The theme of this edition of the GBF is “Scale-Up Africa.” The theme is right on target, considering the difficulties that hinders African businesses from thriving at a world level. While the subject is very broad, the organisers made a great job turning it into a very specific proposition – focusing on the key challenges at once, the conference programme rests in three pillars: Collaboration, Scaling Start-ups and Game Changer.

According to GBF, their first segment, Collaboration, seeks to explore “…the role of the public sector in enabling the growth of start-ups, at the relationship between entrepreneurs and established companies, and at the influence of international business partners.” In other words, this is where governments and large companies will be, carefully peaking at opportunities to make economies thrive by reaching bi-lateral agreements to help move goods or businesses across nations. 

Scaling Start-ups, the most important in my view, seeks to make the relations between investors and possible clients easier. In 2017 alone, over 10,000 businesses were present in the previous edition of the GBF. If the number follows the trend at which African businesses are being created, it could be doubled; either with returning companies or a great number of new ones. Furthermore, this section will have a mentorship program, connecting Start-up owners with mentors that have experience in the area, giving valuable information in order to overcome challenges and keeping the pace going. A fantastic initiative that is poised to produce measurable results.

The third and last pillar of the GBF 2019 has a very modern motif. Game Changer seeks to create ideas and solution for Africa’s development and sustainable issues. By looking at views from young entrepreneurs, the Forum will analyze a large diversity of issues and propose how these challenges can be solved. “[In] rethinking difficult sectors, from agriculture to energy, and how they are partnering to gain global scale and greater traction.” 

See you in Dubai!

Lucas Continentino

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