The Harvard Experience – CEO of Flippy Campus

Team Flippy | Tuesday, March 29th, 2016

Flippy Campus in Harvard

 Taking part in the 18th Africa Business Conference is definitely one of the highlights of my year. Although it was only a 3 day program, it managed to take my number one spot for the year because of its unusual nature and the participants who took part in it. In this piece I am going to share 3 main reasons it was such a great experience.

(1) The Topics, personnel and Network

The theme of the conference is Unite, Innovate and Disrupt. Home grown models for Africa’s prosperity. With this, the conference brought together different people in the areas of disruptive technology and innovation which included Ashish Thakkar; The Executive Chairman of Mara Group, Jorn Lyseggen; the founder of Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology and Mr Deepak Singhal; the CEO of Indomie among many others. The conference had several sessions comprising entrepreneurship, workshop on innovation and sales as well as networking sessions. The audience was rich in influence and from diverse backgrounds but they mainly had one thing in common, doing something innovative in Africa.

(2) New Venture competition

The new venture competition was a pitch competition that brought together 10 of the brightest startups from across the continent, to pitch to an audience of over 10,000 and with a cash prize of $10,000 for the winning team and also $5,000 for fans favorite. Flippy Campus was one of the top ten startups selected to compete in the new venture competition. As the first startup to take the stage, right after Professor Clayton Christensen ( a global leader in the area of innovation) gave his speech, it felt like he was warming the stage for me to take over.

When I walked up the stage I told the classic Flippy Campus story which wowed the audience and received a round of applause. Other teams came up and also did their pitches. The one I loved the most was Dotlearn which packages learning materials into 5MB packets and thus make it possible for people with poor internet also access these materials. As the competition came to an end, team Crossfrontier International won the ultimate price and Flippy Campus got accepted into Awethu Accelerator in South Africa.

(3) The After party

To close out the 2016 Africa Business Conference, a banquet and after party were organized on Saturday, February 27 at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Centre. The banquet featured a custom menu with an African twist. There was no shortage of dignitaries at the banquet as His Excellency Paul Kagame, the president of the republic of Rwanda gave a keynote speech.

To add to the excitement, an array of entertainers from the African continent were invited to treat the audience to some good African music. These entertainers included Ghana’s own Sarkodie, whose melody was well received to the extent that I couldn’t help but display all my local dance moves in a single song.

It’s been a pleasant experience. Not just for the travel and the networks I established. But most importantly, the opportunity to learn and explore knowledge from a diverse cultural, economical and educational perspective.

I didn’t just have fun. I also learnt a lot.