On 29 November 2018 the SAIS 2 Programme was a part of organising an international networking event, Connecting Drivers of Change - Advancing Entrepreneurship in Africa as one of the side events at Slush 2018. In collaboration with Slush GIA, Think Africa, BioFISA II, amplaffy, New Global and Afrolynk, the event was aimed at connecting Finnish and African thought leaders, advancing the entrepreneurship agenda through engaging round table discussions and networking. The community event attracted 100 enthusiastic participants on the same date as the opening of the Call for Proposals 2 of the SAIS 2 Innovation Fund. The program included key note talks, start-up showcases of the Slush GIA and FemBioBiz start-ups from SADC and startups representing several other countries from around Africa. The roundtable discussions facilitated meaningful networking among the participants, with SAIS 2 hosting one on Strengthening the Startup Ecosystems in Africa with Finland. The highlights included:
SAIS 2 Lead Expert Ilari Lindy hosted a round-table discussion on Strengthening the Startup Ecosystems in Africa with Finland with participants representing
Finnish private companies, startup networks and hubs in Southern Africa.
SAIS 2 International Programme Officers Roosa Tuomaala (right) and Auri Evokari (left) collaborated with six international organisations with the event program hosted by Auri.
The startups attending the event reported making valuable connections from the event, Solomon Kitumba from Uganda represented his financial technology startup Swipe2Pay.