Coca Cola to Host SIFE Kenya

Published on 7th October 2008

Coca-Cola East and Central Africa Business Unit and the ICT Board will sponsor 80 Kenyan tourism and ICT students to attend the upcoming E Tourism East Africa Conference and training seminars this month.  The conference will feature presentations from many of the world’s top online companies, including Expedia, Microsoft and Trip Advisor.

 

Coca-Cola is also hosting a special session with over 200 university students from Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) Programme on the 14th of October, 2008  with one of the keynote speakers of the E Tourism East Africa Conference – Pete Ward. Ward is the co CEO and Founder of wayn.com (Where Are You Now?), the world’s leading social networking site for travelers.

 

Pete and his business partner – Jerome Touze, both in their 20s, are high profile UK internet innovators, due to the rapid rise of their site wayn.com which now has over 13 million members.

 

Pete Ward will explain how wayn.com grew from an idea to a multi million dollar global business and the challenges, hurdles as well as the opportunities he leveraged. 

 

“I am very excited that I will have the opportunity to speak to young entrepreneurs while I am in Kenya.  I know that there are many obstacles and challenges to starting your own business, particularly when you’re young, but I want to share my experiences and hopefully motivate and inspire young Kenyans that there are many ideas – particularly in the realm of ICT and tourism, that can be turned into a profitable business”, said Ward.

 

“Nurturing and guiding young entrepreneurs to develop their ideas into a workable business model is important to us,” said Norah Odwesso, the Public Affairs & Communications Director for Coca-Cola East and Central Africa.

 

“We want to encourage young Kenyans to become part of a new generation of African innovation. Wayn.com offers a perfect example of this and I am sure that the students will be inspired and encouraged by the session”, said Norah Odwesso.

 

Mr, Paul Kukubo, CEO of the ICT Board, said the opportunity to meet and hear from a great range of international innovators in the ICT and Tourism sector will be incredibly valuable.

 

“So much can be gained by listening and learning from others in business. The ICT Board is extremely pleased to be supporting ICT entrepreneurs to attend the E Tourism East Africa conference. I know that for many of the international companies presenting at the conference, this will be their first time in East Africa. This is a great opportunity for Kenya and the country’s growing ICT sector.

 

The Director of SIFE, Mr James Shikwati, praised Coca-Cola and the ICT board for their support for both the conference and training seminars and the entrepreneur session.

 

“We must do all we can to support and encourage our youth to harness online opportunities. The growth of ICT  is key to ensuring competitiveness in Kenya’s tourism sector. The exposure that these students will gain from the new ideas and technologies presented at the conference, as well as the inspiration from a successful, young digital entrepreneur, such as Peter Ward, will be priceless,” said Mr Shikwati 

 

E Tourism Africa (www.e-tourismafrica.com) is a pan African initiative to assist Africa’s tourism sector to better understand the internet and the range of online marketing opportunities now available.

 

www.wayn.com (Where Are You Now?) is the world's largest travel and lifestyle focused social networking community website. The site operates in 193 countries and membership has grown from 45,000 users in March 2005 to over 13 million today. WAYN allows its members to keep track of their friends' whereabouts and make new friends based on where they are now, where they have been and where they’re going.

 

SIFE creates a global partnership between business and higher education that prepares university students to make a meaningful contribution toward a better world as entrepreneurs and business leaders, by challenging them to address real world business and economic issues in their communities. SIFE utilizes the energy, enthusiasm, and idealism of university students to effect positive change by teaching others that business and free markets are the answer for long-term economic growth and improvement in the quality of life. SIFE encourages participation of students from all disciplines, ethnic, and religious backgrounds. Through empowering others, the students gain a practical understanding of how market economies work and develop a culture of ethical business conduct.

 

SIFE Kenya was launched in February 2003 after an MOU agreement between SIFE Global and the Inter Region Economic Network (IREN). The SIFE Kenya program has expanded from the initial membership of 5 universities to 14 spread across the country. www.sife.org 

 

 


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