The African continent is no longer the “Dark Continent” with deficits and gaps. Africa is shaping into its own with rising talent, creativity, opportunities, prospects, ventures and enormous opportunities. Investors like Hiruy Amanuel are already tapping into the expertise and doing big things on the continent.
Hiruy Amanuel is an Ethiopian-American and the managing director of A. J. Ventures and Gebeya Media Productions. He’s also a co-founder of Gebeya Institute. Hiruy is multitalented and wears many hats. He’s a venture capitalist, an investor and a talented businessman with strong business acumen.
“My position as the director of incubation Gebeya exposed me to the talent that Africa has to offer when it comes to the information technology front,” explains Hiruy. The firm matches talented and certified IT professionals to companies around the globe. The company has made a significant impact when it comes to maximizing opportunities for IT experts and making it easy for companies to hire experts.
Hiruy’s latest venture is Kukulu, an invigorating mobile game that centers on Ethiopian culture. The game tells a story of a Kukulu, a brave chicken that is determined to escape being slaughtered during the Ethiopian New Year.
The 3D mobile runner game will have you at the edge of your seat as you try to help the chicken escape countless obstacles trying to avoid being a sacrifice during the New Year. The exiting game has different objectives, characters and obstacles at every level to prevent monotony.
“We discovered Dawit Abraham and his team during one of our training sessions, and I immediately saw the opportunity to show the world at large that Africa is capable of producing world-class IT products and services,” says Hiruy. Hiruy has a deep passion for his homeland and is always on the lookout for investment opportunities for innovative and deserving ideas; especially with respect to social impact.
Although landlocked, Ethiopia’s growth potential is massive. However, one of the country’s primary challenges when it comes to maintaining sustainable economic growth in the last decade has been lack of enough gainful job opportunities. Most of the jobs created on the continent and subsequently the continent are underpaid and involve minimal training. That’s where individuals like Hiruy come in because they understand Africa better, and are determined to keep the positive economic impact growing by funding worthy ideas and empowering visionary entrepreneurs.
Africa at large has been a significant commodity supplier exporting agricultural output, petroleum, and minerals for a long time. Although Africa is still rich in resources, it has undeniable talent that has yet to be properly monetized. Mobile adoption is one of Africa’s cross-sectoral economic opportunities that is increasingly gaining momentum and helping Africans to leapfrog and minimize day-to-day hurdles. From mobile payment platforms and African mobile games to mobile medical devices, Hiruy hopes to shed light on and develop some of Africa’s best talent.
Globalization has eliminated unconquered frontiers, and the global village presents opportunities to work together as world citizens. Unemployment is still a big issue in Africa with 50 to 60% of African youth being unemployed despite having the necessary skills.
The youth is, however, taking matters into their own hands and developing innovative startups. Capital is, however, the biggest hindrance to many creative concepts never seen the light of day because of lack of funds.
What can investors do to help?
“Both foreign and domestic investors should give Africa a look at the landscape from the street level. Before going to a country and trying to invest in an African entrepreneur, you should take the time to get to know them. Get to know their struggles and problems so you can help them accordingly. Investors need to bear in mind that the cost of living is also rising in Africa, and therefore should not expect to pay cheap rates when hiring Africans. There are enormous opportunities in Africa but investors need to start investing in training and investing in capacity if they hope to retain them and to create a cohesive environment that is mutually beneficial to all parties.
-Written by Carrie Writer