The Football Foundation for Africa organized the inaugural Africa Football Business Summit in October 2022. The event brought together over 120 delegates with 20-plus speakers, 15 insightful interviews, panel discussions and presentations, and 1 Workshop, a resounding success for our budding organization.
The Africa Football Business Summit was born of the need for Africa to invest in knowledge creation and dissemination systems and collaborative and progressive leadership to transform the continent’s football. Due to the rich football talent across the continent and the presence of world-class African players in the big leagues, many conclude that Africa is continuously failing to achieve its full potential, judging by its performance at the FIFA World Cup. Africa’s best performance was at the last FIFA World Cup in Qatar, where three (out of the five) teams made it to the round of 16, and Morocco qualified for the semi-finals.
However, we have to note talent alone is not enough. As exemplified by Morocco, long-term investment in grassroots football development, quality facilities, a conducive sports development policy, and strong leadership are some of the ingredients required to build a robust sports ecosystem.
Further, we cannot continue to measure the progress of our football industry by our performances at the FIFA World Cup. A more crucial metric is the state of the leagues and clubs in Africa, coupled with the social and economic contribution of the sport to the continent. A more holistic approach is needed.
The Football Foundation for Africa is organising the second Africa Football Business Summit, which aims to bring together the best minds in football business management, government, the private sector, and international development across the continent and its diaspora. The Summit seeks to forge conversations, create networks and mobilise investment to transform the beautiful game on the continent.
In Africa, as in the world, football is the leading sport to be loved and followed by millions of fans. Football also involves stakeholders from different sectors who are interested in the sport. However, there have not been many opportunities to bring together all football stakeholders to discuss in detail, chart the way forward on the various issues related to the game’s development, and learn from our colleagues in other continents who took action. AFBS 2023 brings football stakeholders together and allows them to discuss the various problems related to developing this popular sport in the continent.