Fidelity bank card banner Emerald Energy Institute Camano banner

Africapitalism, the path to Africa’s development —Elumelu

By News Express on 31/05/2013

Gmail icon

Views: 3,290

Africa’s future lies in Africapitalism as charity and aid have failed the continent and its leading entrepreneurs are now driving the continent’s development agenda.

This is the view of Tony Elumelu, the exponent of Africapitalism, which he vigorously canvassed in a speech he delivered Tuesday at the African Development Bank’s (AfDB) Annual Board of Governors meeting held in Marrakech, Morocco. The speech was followed by a panel discussion moderated by the BBC presenter Zeinab Badawi with Ronald Lauder, founder of the Ronald S. Lauder Foundation.

Elumelu challenged the audience to consider a new approach to Africa’s development – one that involved the private sector and was capable of kick-starting the economic ecosystem that underpins all sustainable development. He called this new approach Africapitalism, an economic philosophy which asserts that the private sector can solve Africa’s most pressing challenges through long term investments that create economic prosperity and social wealth.

In front of a global audience that included African finance ministers, central bank governors, CEOs, and executives of global development finance institutions, as well as African business leaders, including some past presidents, development partners, and African and global philanthropic institutions, Elumelu spoke of the failure of traditional development interventions which have previously characterised development in Africa. 

The president of the African Development Bank, Donald Kaberuka, described the speech as, “rich in human quality and compassion,” and recognised that it “set out the challenge for home-grown African wealth, whether of billionaires or small businessmen, to invest in Africa.”

Elumelu, who is Chairman of Heirs Holdings, a proprietary investment company and founder of The Tony Elumelu Foundation, called for the private sector to take on the responsibility of development using his personal experience at the United Bank for Africa (UBA). 

He made a compelling case for Africapitalism by telling the story of how a USD5 million investment in UBA 17 years ago spawned a multinational, pan-African financial institution that has created 25,000 jobs, generated wealth in communities all across Africa, expanded finance for trade, created stronger financial infrastructure for investment and economic growth, paid taxes to national and local governments to support public services, and given millions of customers control over their financial lives.

He compared that investment to the annual flow of charitable aid into Africa – many times the USD5 million investment that started UBA – to show that private sector involvement was a far superior, more effective way of dealing with Africa’s development challenges.  Elumelu’s investment company Heirs Holdings’ recent USD300 million investment in a power plant in Nigeria was another example of a long-term, profit driven investment that would bring development to Africa. 

Elumelu mentioned other strategic visionaries who were also playing a significant role in driving the continent’s development through their business investments: Aliko Dangote and Mike Adenuga in Nigeria, Lucien Ebata in the DRC, Reginald Mengi in Tanzania, Patrice Motsepe in South Africa, Kofi Amoabeng in Ghana – these are entrepreneurs who are creating tens of thousands of jobs, empowering individuals, families and entire communities.

In a call to action for the continent’s entrepreneurs and business leaders who have not yet embraced Africapitalism, he pleaded with them to ‘step up’ and deliberately start investing in strategic sectors that would drive development.

“We need to do away with short-term thinking. We should be investing over time horizons measured in decades, rather than fiscal quarters. We must stop the practice of extracting wealth without reinvesting for growth. We should be strategically building domestic industries and manufacturing to support our national economies, and growing intra-African trade,” he said.

In concluding, Elumelu called on the philanthropic and charitable communities of Africa, the development banks and the private investors to embrace the philosophy of Africapitalism and recognise that the private sector’s role in driving economic prosperity is the solution for development.

“Economic prosperity is the most valuable and lasting gift we can give to a continent with our challenges. We need to support solutions that are catalytic and sustainable. That should be the ultimate goal of our “development” mission. 

•Photo (L-R): Lauder, Kaberuka, and Elumelu at the African Development Bank Annual Board of Governors Meeting at Marrakech, Morocco.

Source News Express

Posted 31/05/2013 6:12:08 PM





You may also like...
Buhari to release full audit report on NNPC...

Why we won’t disclose Buhari’s medical expenses: FG...

INEC endorses Anambra APGA State Congress

Biafra: Ohanaeze disowns Kanu, IPOB

Kebbi Governor dissolves LG Councils

Rivers will pay N30,000 minimum wage if FG...

Court warns Federal Ministry of Information over incessant...

JAMB postpones sale of 2018 application forms

Tension in Bayelsa over proposed Kaiama declaration by...

Hajj 2017: Death toll of Nigerian pilgrims rises...

Shippers Council meets companies over $400 surcharge

What does Donald Trump’s new man, John Bolton’s...


Latest News Port Harcourt serial killer unmasked Buhari sacks Head of Service Oyo-Ita Another suspected Port Harcourt serial killer nabbed Alleged rape: Adamawa teacher, 12-year-old schoolgirl are lovers — NUT chairman Pandemonium in Onitsha market as Police officer shoots vigilante chief 5 killed, several injured as gunmen attack Taraba communities Champions League: Man City win convincingly in Shakhtar, PSG beat Real Public outcry over N5.5bn voted for lawmakers’ utility vehicles nonsensical, says Senate Dickson fires aide over misconduct Governors meet over N614bn bailout deductions, others Nigeria, South Africa, xenophobia and the United Nations, By Bashir Maidugu RIWAMA issues final warning to defaulting service providers


Most Read NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (541,489 views) Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (443,418 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (389,772 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (326,896 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (294,921 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (253,765 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (249,942 views) 10 cars more expensive than Jets (238,624 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (231,637 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (217,681 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (196,000 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (193,583 views)


CBN milk production

CBN banner advert

UBA Wise Savers Promo


Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (102) Business & Economy (4,451) Business Verdict (80) Columnists (1,110) Complaints & Requests (96) Enterprise & Opportunities (215) Entertainment (664) Features (812) Global Business Monitor (442) ICT Monitor (63) International (3,963) Interview (203) Live Commentary (30) Love Matters (170) Maggie's Blog (414) News (51,468) Opinion (1,360) Pidgin (17) Politics (11,453) Religion (1,102) Sports (2,170) Stock Watch (39) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update







APO Group Partner




GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member



Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera