AFRIBIZ INCLUSIVE ECOSYSTEM
This gives you the picture of the Afribiz ecosystem with the synergistic nature of the business and social side of the ecosystem for economic development.
Community Engagement Partners
Community Engagement partners are individuals or organizations that are not a part of Afribiz, but partners or collaborators. They typically would be faith organizations, NGOs, government agencies, etc. These organizations are already doing a lot to support communities, so we do not want to do what they are already doing. We want to leverage what they are doing for the purpose of inclusive economic development in communities and the local economy.
When we think of Community Engagement, the first level is the foundation of community engagement – outreach, servicing needs of community, and developing strong relationships. These entities will have credibility, a track record of service, relationships, and deep knowledge of the people in the community which then we do not have to establish ourselves, or work from scratch. Afribiz can leverage these assets to work toward a greater degree of inclusive economic development in each community.
However, as Afribiz, we do not engage with individuals and organizations until they have developed at two other levels. We want to come in when the soil has been prepared for the planting of the seed of entrepreneurship. We will, however, refer them to resources and other organizations who can assist them.
The second level of community engagement is community and individual empowerment. Empowerment means that the community and its members are empowered through various means and take ownership and responsibility, as well as looking to solve their own problems, for their lives and community. There will be outward signs demonstrating that this is the case. When communities and individuals are at this level, they have the starting DNA for entrepreneurial enterprises.
The last level that is necessary is that the community has gone through a community asset mapping exercise, or community DNA identification (that which makes the community unique). This is very instrumental in building the economy of that community and provides community partners, like Afribiz, a rich tapestry of understanding about the community which helps us to work alongside them to build their economies.
Community Entrepreneurial Training
Afribiz, the Afribiz Accelerators specifically, begins to engage with the communities directly, or indirectly, through facilitators who focus on planting the seed of entrepreneurship in communities as broadly as possible. We provide the material and capacity building for the facilitators who then go out and provide a one-day workshop, partnering with local organizations.
From here, Afribiz will begin to hear from the facilitators of what type of entrepreneurial activity is going on in the community and we can begin to engage with the community to identify emerging entrepreneurs that have business ideas that would broadly benefit the community and/or look at a community venture that can be developed as a strategic business in the community.
As communities and entrepreneurs are fed into the Afribiz channels, some will decide to go to the next level which is enterprise, or venture, development. The first phase is to go through our core entrepreneurial leadership training. While variations of the same core training is provided, this foundation is provided to youth and community members who are a part of leading the entrepreneurial enterprise, as well as start-ups and small, medium, and micro enterprises.
Those that proceed from the core training are fed into the business modeling phase, which helps them develop a sustainable business model and pilot it (if it is an entirely new venture). Those that proceed from this stage then enter our three-year accelerator program which provides the supporting ecosystem around them including contract opportunities, funding/investment, partnerships, coaching/mentoring, training, etc. The ecosystem that supports them is the existing ecosystem of projects/ventures that are developed The Afribiz Foundation.
There for the social fabric of a country is inclusively plugged into the fabric of the economy.
The business side of the Afribiz inclusive economy is charged with creating the tangible opportunities into which entrepreneurs, communities, and youth can be plugged into. Historically, there are limitations to incubators/accelerators as they strengthen the organization but not the opportunities. By creating the opportunities, we help young, fledgling entrepreneurial enterprises get a headstart.
This is led by The Afribiz Foundation, which works closely with Afribiz Accelerators, Afribiz Group, Inc., and Afribiz ventures.
Industry ventures are those that develop or expand an existing industry. For example, developing an agricultural processing industry to process the food produced by local farmers so that they can receive more benefit from the food s they produce while providing food to meet local demand instead of seeing food imported from other countries.
Large-scale projects are those already in the works in the economy, such as infrastructure, energy, etc. We develop, or co-develop them with others, with the design and intent to carve out a certain percentage of sub-contract work for local entrepreneurs.
We partner with others to develop microfranchises that allow youth to develop a livelihood. Microfranchises are those business models that normally constitute a straightforward product or service, which means lower entry costs and skill requirements. These make it possible for a very broad larger audience of people to plug into economic opportunities.
All of the economic development activity of Afribiz is organized into what we call partnership ecosystems. Partnership ecosystems allow us to readily leverage the resources and assets of long-term partners and make it more efficient for us to bring opportunities to a larger number of people and enterprises.
AFRIBIZ – THE “JOINT” SYSTEM
The Afribiz Foundation is the head of the Afribiz inclusive ecosystem. It is responsible for research, development, partnerships, and project development. It is supported by Afribiz Group, Inc. which manages and implements all aspects of project development for Afribiz concerns.
Afribiz Accelerators serve as the “nerve” center for Afribiz in each of the cities in which it resides bringing together all the elements of our ecosystems to accelerate the economies. The Accelerators are responsible for the development of entrepreneurial enterprises in preparation for plugging into opportunities in the broader ecosystem.
Afribiz Ventures is the holding company under which Afribiz holds its share of ownership on projects/ventures it develops, or co-develops.
We are able to serve such a diverse audience due to our holistic, synergistic understanding and approach to business ecosystems from which we create a cooperative environment with business, social, and government stakeholders. The following represents a holistic view of how we work – strategy, structures, spheres, sectors, and systems.
Our service/product portfolio can broadly be considered research and design of economic and business development mechanisms. However, our unique value is how we re-configure key resources and methods and then apply them to business opportunities so that, instead of constraining or limiting opportunities, we are able to open up and develop undertapped, previously challenging and/or impossible business opportunities in Africa and around the globe. Our strategy focuses on three unique structures that we have developed – Afristratos™ Partnership Ecosystems, City-Africa Clusters, and Afribiz Accelerators™.