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01.12.2005 Business & Finance

GE, GCG, Google Pursue Independent Projects in Ghana

By Ama Fordjour
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General Electric Company, one of the most valuable corporations in the world, delivered an impressive 15-minute presentation on Ghana at the 2005 National Black MBA Association conference hosted in San Diego, California on October 11-16. The historic event, which was moved to San Diego from New Orleans (its original venue) due to Hurricane Katrina, attracted over 10,000 delegates and more than 100 companies, including Microsoft, IBM, Goldman Sachs, Wachovia Bank, Walt Disney Company and PriceWaterhouseCoopers. African delegates that attended the 27th Annual summit include:
Mary Caulley, Scripps Institute, La Jolla, California
Ben Galendez, Lockheed Martin, San Diego, California
Seth Kekessie, Nextel Communications, Reston, Virginia
Charles Kofi Darkwah, Duke University, North Carolina
Dunstan Banafoe, Duke University, North Carolina
Richard Akowuah, Duke University, North Carolina
Kweku Halm, Datel Inc. Wakefield, Massachusetts
Daniel Osafo, Deloitte Consulting, Chicago, Illinois
Albert Ablorh Odjidja, Project Manager, Architectural, Bronx, NY
Charles K. Amoo-Asante, Finance IBC, Washington, DC
Ibrahim Adamu, Hewlett-Packard, Cupertino, California
Joseph A. Nketia, Case Western, Cleveland, Ohio
Jane Darkwah, Silver Spring, Maryland
Samuel Okpattah, UTStarcom Inc. Alameda, California
The GE presentation highlighted the company's launching of a 5-year, $20 million project that seeks to improve healthcare delivery and education in Ghana. Three GE businesses - GE Healthcare, GE Infrastructure and GE Industrial - have donated ultrasound equipment, X-rays, patient monitors, incubators, refrigerators, and freezers to hospitals in Ghana. It also provided a power-generator and water-treatment system to Asesewa. GE executives also agreed to train health workers in leadership, Six Sigma, and project management skills. (Source: Marc Gunther, Fortune Magazine).
Full article on GE's Ghana project can be read at the link below:
(http://www.ge.com/en/company/investor/ge_social_responsibility_and_citizenship.htm)
The General Electric project complements Dr. George Oteng-Attakora's Partnership Outreach Program for Ghana, (PoP4Ghana) to rehabilitate Ghanaian schools and hospitals, and IT projects currently being pursued by Ghana Cyber Group, Inc. On November 18, 2005, Yaw Owusu, GCG Founder & Chief Executive, presented the Ghana Technology Park proposal at Columbia Business School's 24th Annual BBSA Conference.
The tech park venture, which the United Nations has committed funding for, and has attracted the attention of a growing number of private firms, including Oracle Corporation, will be an upscale business and innovation center designed to (1) identify and develop early stage technology incubation opportunities, (2) assist client companies to commercialize their products and (3) broker contracts between buyers of outsourcing services (based primarily in Europe and North America) and information technology (IT) and business process outsourcing (BPO) providers stationed at the Park. In October 2005, Google committed $1 billion toward financing development projects in emerging markets. Among its first installment to anchor this initiative, Google immediately released half-a-million dollars last month to Technoserve to fund a comprehensive entrepreneur and business development program in Ghana. "Google, one of the great entrepreneurial success stories of our time, clearly recognizes the value of harnessing the entrepreneurial drive of men and women in the developing world to solve the problems of poverty," says Bruce McNamer, president and CEO of TechnoServe. "The greatest lever for long-term development is helping Africans help themselves, by building businesses that generate the incomes that ultimately sustain social benefits and increase the standard of living."

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