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2nd annual Powering Africa Summit will give grass roots insights into energy investing

Private equity groups and energy companies looking to expand their investment horizons into the African continent will have a unique chance to meet a wide selection of government and regulatory officials at next week’s Powering Africa Summit.

The event will take place between 27th and 29th January, 2016 at the Marriott Marquis hotel in Washington D.C. 

The Summit, organized by EnergyNet, brings together USAID, Power Africa, Millennium Challenge Corporation and other US inter-governmental agencies with Africa’s Energy and Infrastructure Ministers and other key stakeholders in the energy sector to discuss investment opportunities.

“We have over 80 speakers confirmed,” says Veronica Bolton-Smith, Program Manager at EnergyNet. They include: Steven Hunt, Senior Innovation Adviser, Department for International Development, UK who will be talking about the Energy in Africa campaign that DFID launched together with Power Africa last year. Other high-profile speakers include Hans Olav Ibrekk, Policy Director, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Government of Norway, who also works with the Power Africa team, and Solomon Asamoah, Vice President Infrastructure, Private Sector and Regional Integration from the African Development Bank.”

Attendees will have the chance to listen to, and network with, a wide range of heads of U.S. inter-governmental agencies. 

For example, Leocadia Zak, Director, United States Trade and Development Agency; Dana Hyde, Chief Executive Officer, Millennium Challenge Corporation; Elizabeth Littlefield, President and CEO, Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC); John Macwilliams, Associate Deputy Secretary, US Department of Energy, and Shari Berenbach, President and CEO, US Africa Development Foundation.

African representation includes: H.E. Minister, Obeth Kandjoze, Minister of Energy and Minerals, Namibia; Thabane, Zulu, Director General, Department of Energy, South Africa and Pascoal Bacela, National Director of Energy, Ministry of Energy, Mozambique to name but a few. 

From the corporate side, speakers include: Deo Onyango, Renewable Energy Leader, Sub-Saharan Africa, General Electric; Clare Rhodes-James, Development Director, Hydro and Renewables Practice, Mott Macdonald; Mateo Jaramillo, Vice President, Products and Programs, Tesla. 

“We’ve even got Akon, the musician, talking about his Lighting Africa initiative, which focuses on lighting up provincial parts of Africa. He’s just collaborated with Power Africa and will be giving a presentation,” confirms Bolton-Smith. 

The focus of the 2nd Annual Powering Africa will be on the private sector, outlining current opportunities for those who have never ventured into Africa and dispel some of the myths about what it is like to conduct business there. 

Panel discussions on how technology will be game changing in Africa, integrated infrastructure and energy and the feasibility of collaboration between governments and investors, African Utilities: The Key to Unlocking Africa’s Power Development and Infrastructure Financing will keep delegates informed across all facets of Africa’s energy space.

“We are really thrilled that we have got heads of utilities and heads of regulatory bodies in Africa. They will host their own roundtables during the summit so we are getting significant grass roots representation this year. Last year’s summit was more outlining ideas and opportunities at a macro level. This year’s summit will focus on putting those ideas into practice. We expect to see a lot of networking and deal discussion taking place. 

“Two workshops will be running for the first time. The first is entitled Women in Energy Innovation, and will be hosted by Deloitte. The second, entitled Social and Environmental Impact, will be hosted by Oxfam America. We also have a dedicated private equity session on Day Two, during which joint ventures will be discussed,” outlines Bolton-Smith.

Success stories will be showcased, such as private equity groups that have launched new funds in Africa (i.e. Carlyle Group). Delegates will get a chance to understand what is needed in 
terms of legislation, and what the various elements are that need to be considered before investing in Africa. As Bolton-Smith points out, PE managers, and other investors, will have an opportunity to ask questions and get the views directly from “key policy makers at the summit”.

“I don’t think there’s another summit like this. We are bringing together key heads of governmental and regulatory bodies, both in the US and Africa, with private sector corporate groups who are looking for projects. We will actively encourage private meetings during the summit for power developers etc., to discuss potential projects with African ministers that require funding. We saw a number of deals get announced on the back of last year’s summit and we are confident that this will be the case again.” 

The summit will provide excellent exposure for private equity groups to meet with key decision makers and understand what project opportunities exist. 

“We will actively encourage private meetings during the summit for power developers etc., to discuss potential projects with African ministers that require funding. We saw a number of deals get announced on the back of last year’s summit and we are confident that this will be the case again,” concludes Bolton-Smith.

To find out further details about the 2nd Annual Powering Africa Summit, please click on any of the following links:
 
Website: www.poweringafrica-summit.com 
Email: [email protected]   
Contact telephone: +44 207 384 8068

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