“Heineken has the intention to fully participate in the ongoing African growth story,” announces Siep Hiemstra, Heineken President for Africa & Middle East.
6/13/2012 7:39:33 PM -
Hiemstra to spotlight Heineken's present and future role in Africa at the Africa Finance & investment Forum 2012.
'HEINEKEN has the intention to fully participate in the ongoing African growth story and we are well equipped to do so as we have been active in Africa since the 1920's. Growing with the continent means that we invest in creating a sustainable position which includes investing in our breweries and their footprint, taking care of our people and their families by ensuring access to health care, and by making sure we have a positive impact and continuously stay connected to the communities in which we operate', explains Siep Hiemstra, Heineken President for Africa & Middle East.
Leading global beer brand, Heineken, will spotlight the increasing opportunities for international companies wanting to operate in Africa at this year's Africa Finance & Investment Forum (AFIF 2012). The Forum, entitled 'Financial inclusion through SMEs & Cooperatives', is promoted by EMRC and held in partnership with Rabobank at the Rabobank Headquarters, the Netherlands, from 17-19 June 2012.
Heineken's work in Africa focuses on being future oriented and empowering. The company is committed to source 60% of its raw materials in Africa by 2020. In order to reach this goal, Public Private Partnerships are key, whereby farmers will be trained to ensure a steady demand at an agreed price. Agricultural sectors will be improved, farmers' productivity and yield will be increased and thus also livelihoods and incomes. Parallel to this, Heineken's supply is secured and its carbon footprint improved. 'This is truly a win-win and a great example of how to translate the concept of 'growing' with the continent,' adds Hiemstra.
The company focuses on investing in the continent by sourcing as much as possible locally, ensuring that African agriculture and industry is strengthened. Emerging markets are characterized by their high growth perspective and this leads to pressure on the current and sometimes weaker infrastructure. However, the situation is improving in many countries, according to Hiemstra. 'As we speak and as HEINEKEN has been operating in Africa over a hundred years we quickly learned how to overcome these hurdles where they remain.'
Finding the right balance and correct financial tools for the sector is essential. This year's AFIF Forum will gather leading global representatives from a variety of sectors to highlight the financial tools, solutions and growing policy trends to ensure economic growth for Africa's SMEs. The discussions and proposals to be highlighted at the forum are essential for a cross section of African sectors to establish their full economic potential.
A growing number of organisations and businesses will be present at AFIF 2012, such as FMO - Rabo Development - Rabobank Foundation - IFC, World Bank - IFAD - AfDB (African Development Bank) - Centenary Bank - Shell Foundation - GIZ (German International Cooperation Organisation) - Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs, Agriculture & Innovations - Oikocredit - FARA - Grameen Credit Agricole Foundation - Clifford Chance - Wageningen University - Agriterra - HEINEKEN - I&P - Hivos - AFRACA - AMSCO - Rectory Foods, Ltd - AFRACA (African Rural & Agriculture Credit Association) - Global Development Co-operative - Centenary Bank - among many other from Africa, Europe, America and Asia.
AFIF 2012 will provide a platform for new and improved financial tools to be spotlighted, with a particular focus on mechanisms adapted and unique to the African business model. Business-to-business (B2B) meetings which are tailor-made to ensure maximum business partnership success will be organized on the 18th June at Rabobank Headquarters. Previous forums have seen over 1,000 of these meetings set up over a 2-day period. The international media will spotlight the various speakers and interview a select group of participants to highlight regional and local business ideas and trends.
The EMRC-Hivos-VC4Africa Project Incubator Award will be sponsored this year by the Humanist Institute for Development Cooperation (Hivos), a leading Dutch organisation with a worldwide presence, and held in collaboration with Venture Capital for Africa (VC4A), a global platform connecting entrepreneurs and investors throughout Africa.
With two leading organisations associated to this year's Award, the winner and nominees will receive increased international recognition and the opportunity to expand their global contacts. The award is presided by a panel of international experts, with the winner receiving a cash prize of US$15,000 and the much-needed international media spotlight.
The first two days of the Forum will be held in Utrecht and the third day will be held in partnership with Food First, which includes guided visits to one of the world's biggest Horticultural Expo - Floriade 2012 (Venlo-Netherlands), organized once every ten years.
Interested participants are urged to contact EMRC International and book a place for AFIF 2012. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about sponsorship and speaking opportunities please contact Inês Bastos at email@example.com or visit www.emrc.be