Often the pursuit of an economic activity has one agenda in mind, which is getting a return, hopefully, one that exceeds the costs of production or creation.
Those who figure out this path to profitability at scale are often celebrated as captains of industry, delivering value to their shareholders and in some cases back to the community through well-positioned corporate social investments.
No one faults this status quo, but with the unit economics and strategies for realisation of profit in place, I find it refreshing that a growing number of entrepreneurs with technology-inclined businesses are thinking about greater impact in their societies, even casting those visions further afield to cover the larger continent, a step up from dynasty-driven entrepreneurs gone before.
No sector is immune to the fresh charge of ideas powered by technology, disrupting business models, supply chains, distribution, and even production.
What is different, perhaps from the disposition of the many of the founding teams who have grown in the age of the fledgling internet in Africa with access to information, is a sense of the larger opportunity and attendant responsibility that comes with building a business.
With many of these enterprises leaning on software to transform the sectors of opportunity that they have identified, I am of the opinion that it is the need to scale beyond singular markets and interactions with others from different regions of the world that have opened up techpreneur eyes to the need for fundamental changes in the way business is transacted across the continent.
The lack of a homogenous market yet sharing a common itch, has the questions fester birthed from first-hand frustrations like closing on capital, onboarding great talent, moving physical goods, traveling across borders, collecting payments, remittances et cetera.
Every business is an impact business and I am happy that more people are realising the pigeon-hole that is ‘social entrepreneur’ and ‘impact investor’.
This growing sense of purposefulness and active engagement on the social and political fronts is one that I hope builds ups from its current embers to a continental furnace of change as more entrepreneurs buy into the vision that will trigger a pan-African reset and regeneration, laying the foundations for what will be the continents renaissance.
I remain optimistic about the Africa rising spirit. The fruits may not be enjoyed by my generation but our future will be thankful that we got started and believed when we did.