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John Funnell

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Africa is Treated as a ‘Priority Market’

The continent's Telecom giants meet at the renowned NGT to see how their new found wealth could be spent

Chief Executive of the Nigerian Communications Commission, Engr. Ernest Ndukwe has confirmed that telecoms investment in Nigeria in the last eight years has exceeded US$18 billion, and they are not alone as the entire continent is seen as a priority market by the world's investors. This came to light at the Recent NGT Africa summit lead by Ahmad Farrouk, CEO, MTN Nigeria who addressed the fifty strong Telecom leaders on the Growth potential of Africa’s communication industry, sharing his ideas on the importance of deploying networks in rural communities in order to connect harder to reach subscribers and increase market growth.

Other visionaries that took part in the elite debate included Sameer Dave, CTO & Chief Executive, MTN SA, Mohammed Sheik, Group Strategy Director, Zain, Mickael Ghossein, CEO, Telkom Kenya and Steve Bailey, CEO, Virgin Mobile SA who came together to unite the industry to capitalize on investor confidence. Innovation was clearly the buzz word during the discussions. Having one of the largest a growth markets in the world is clearly not enough for the developing continent, they want to build a sustainable network, a point clearly made by the Commonwealth Business Council and GSMA at the NGT summit. Such discussion on innovative technologies were lead by giants Microsoft, ITS and HDS who all see Africa as the ‘land of opportunity’ and played a pivotal role in educating the Executives present.

“African Telecom leaders have united this week at the NGT and are really embracing new technologies. Such pioneering development in ICT clearly sends out the right message to Global investors, as the continents ongoing socio-economic development continues to improve”. William Francis Austin – NGT Summit Director

But what is the next step for Africa? Is the continent now stable enough to capitalize on its growth potential as Europe and the US become saturated and stagnant? Could an enhanced ICT infrastructure allow Africa to compete with Asia or South America? Only time will tell, such discussions are set to continue throughout the year until they rejoin at the next NGT hosted in Cape Town in June 2010.

More Stories By John Funnell

John Funnell has worked in online media for over ten years, after achieving his First Class BSC Hons Degree (BBC Sponsored), John won Bos 18-21 Princess Trust Entrepeneur of the year at 21, setting up Clean Living Records Ltd (including www.BeatReview.com) with great success having many acts that charted in Europe and Canada. After selling the business John looked for a new challenge and joined GDS International, having a successful career in sales and Delegate acquisition, he worked up to Event Director EMEA, forging contacts with some of the biggest technology names in the world, this lead to John having a lead role in the creation of MeettheBoss.com and MeettheBoss.tv – the worlds largest business IPTV channel. John then took over as Marketing and Communications Director and ran a multifaceted global Marketing team for GDS International in New York, Sydney, Kuala Lumper and the UK.. John joined Global in 2011 with the challenge of supporting its growth by developing a solid Marketing foundation through various Digital, PR and brand initiatives.

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