SADC is an inter-governmental organization headquartered in Gaborone, Botswana. Its goal is to further socio-economic cooperation and integration as well as political and security cooperation among 16 southern African countries. A delegation from selected member countries visited Kingston recently, i.e. late November 2019. The delegation comprised of high commissioners from South Africa, Zambia, Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of the Congo!
BizSkills Academy and a few other companies from Kingston got the opportunity to showcase our businesses. The goal of the visit and the events we participated in was to explore opportunities that could be introduced to the home countries of each one of the high commissioners.
Hosting the delegation
The SADC delegation was hosted by the Kingston Economic Development Corporation and MAPP Africa. MAPP Africa is a platform to showcase the art, music, places, and people of Africa. This an initiative that was started by Mr. Brian Dodo, who lives and runs all his businesses from Kingston, Ontario. The high commissioners spent two days in Kingston and visited various companies and institutions in the city. Organizations that were visited include Queen’s University, Bombardier Transportation, Canada Royal Milk processing plant, the Startup Runway (our home) project formerly the Innovation Park and many more other sites.
The presentation to high commissioners
“BizSkills Academy was one of the local companies showcased during this visit. We shared the work we have been doing, our solution and the type of partnerships we would like to establish with countries in the Southern African Development Community.”
Other entrepreneurs and companies who were showcased by the Startup Runway project were: the Dunya Habitats project, SpectraPlasmonics, and AirstoveOne. We all shared the floor to showcase our work and solutions. All of these companies have solutions that are highly needed in Africa, and the opportunity to showcase to the SADC member countries high commissioners was one that is instrumental in the process of creating strategic partnerships with both public and private institutions operating from each individual member country. Solutions presented by these companies will help overcome some of the systemic challenges relating to food, renewable energy, education and advanced detection of harmful bacteria.
The High Commissioners were looking to learn from what is happening in the Kingston business ecosystem. They were on a mission to discover opportunities that they can help introduce to potential strategic partners in their home countries.
Some success already!
We are excited and glad to announce that H.E. the high commission of Lesotho has already initiated a conversation between BizSkills Academy and the University of Lesotho through National University of Lesotho Innovation Fund (NULIF)
We look forward to the potential for future collaboration with the SADC Member countries as BizSkills Academy grows and in many more countries in the coming months!