The Situation

It is with a heavy heart that we announce that due to the current COVID-19 situation, we have decided to hold the Africa Summit 2020 in a modified form. In our digital times, we see this as a chance to interview some of the summit’s speakers on the topic “Investing in Africa” live for you and upload the content online in the near future.

As much as we would like to organize the event with you, the health of the population in Switzerland and worldwide is more important to us. Due to the high number of participants at the Africa Summit it is also not possible to hold the event according to the guidelines of the authorities and on the recommendation of the University of St. Gallen.

We thank you for your understanding and hope that the situation will calm down soon. Until then we wish you all a good time, encourage you to follow the hygiene recommendations and hope you stay healthy.

Investing in Africa

The Africa Summit St. Gallen proudly makes its comeback for its fourth edition in 2020. The Africa Summit St. Gallen is a two-day conference bringing together entrepreneurs, business leaders, and other actors present on the continent to inspire, inform and debate with the student population of the University of St. Gallen about the burgeoning potential of the African continent.

Africa's journey, getting first tagged as “The Hopeless Continent” on the cover of The Economist in 2000 and then “Africa Rising” a decade later, has been anything but boring. The African continent has become the newest destination for emerging market investors.

Multinational enterprises are expanding their activities in Africa. Railway projects, among others in Nigeria and Kenya, were launched by Chinese investors. Further on, South Africa is set to develop a pioneering pilot project aimed to supply clean electricity financed by Abagold. Moving closer, the rising number of investments in impactful start-ups reflects the increasing investor confidence in businesses across the continent’s major hubs (WEF, 2019). 

Can sustainable and inclusive growth on the African continent be achieved with foreign infrastructural investments? Why isn’t there more investment in Africa and how can one develop financial instruments to invest in people in Africa? In order to broach the issues of these noteworthy trends, reach out and share your opinion on the topic, engage in the discussion and let us know what you think. To keep posted follow us on Instagram and Facebook.

About the Summit

AIESEC St. Gallen is honoured to introduce you to the first student-organized conference in Switzerland about Africa. The Summit is aimed at addressing the general public, students, academics and entrepreneurs who are interested in Africa and want to know more about its evolving business pattern.


The St. Gallen Africa Summit 2020 will start on March 23th. We will assist in creating a dialogue between academics, business leaders, entrepreneurs and students through panel discussions and interactive workshops. The Summit will feature highly inspirational content sessions and professional networking opportunities with current and future business leaders. 


We are proud to announce that the Africa Summit takes places at the University of St. Gallen. The university puts an emphasis on the development of integrative thought, the encouragement of responsible action, and the initiation of an entrepreneurial spirit of innovation in business and society. The HSG intensifies its global orientation by forming partnerships with over 200 universities in order to enable the students to spend a semester abroad. Students can engage themselves in one of the 120 student associations and initiatives - including the Start Summit, the St. Gallen Symposium or TEDxHSG.


AIESEC is an NGO that provides students with leadership development, cross-cultural global internships and volunteer exchange experiences across the globe, with the focus to empower young people so they can make a positive impact on society. The AIESEC network includes over 100,000 members in 133 countries and territories.
AIESEC St. Gallen supports the 2020 St. Gallen Africa Summit as it believes in Africa’s future impact in today’s society. 


Dr. Burkhard P. Varnholt
Chief Investment Officer of Credit Suisse (Switzerland) Ltd. and Vice-Chairman of the Global Investment Committee

Burkhard P. Varnholt is the Vice-Chairman of the Credit Suisse Global Investment Committee and Chief Investment Officer of the Credit Suisse (Switzerland) Ltd. Burkhard has more than twenty years of investment management- and leadership experience. He gained his doctorate at the University of St. Gallen, taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the Stern School of Business, New York University. He published several books on investing and numerous articles. In 2004, Burkhard founded the charity ‘Kids of Africa’, which runs an orphanage for homeless children in Uganda ( In 2006 he was awarded the Swiss Re Civilian Services Prize. In 2012 received an honorary doctorate (Dr. h.c.) in International Relations from the Geneva School of Diplomacy for his work in connection with this project. As part of his support to cultural activities, Burkhard also serves as a member of the Tate's Africa Acquisitions Committee (AAC).

Omar Shafik
Partner and Co-Founder of SevenSprings Technology AG

Omar Shafik started working in software development in 1999. Since 2005, he has had experience establishing several companies in Egypt, one in Denmark and two in Switzerland. He is currently the owner of Orchtech, a software house with local and global activities, Purple Digital which is a social media company, and Sevensprings Technology AG in Zurich, Switzerland. With his family, he owns an agricultural company. In his practical experience, he has often worked with NGOs and foreign aids in different projects including and not limited to: e-Learning projects, mobile application development, and e-Gov projects. He has been working since February 2014 as a professor in the French Section of the Arab Academy for Science and Technology and Maritime Transport - (AAST University) and since 2015 as a local lecturer for the MBA, Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, Paris-Dauphine

Solange Mbanefo
Co-Founder of XIMMA

Solange is a practicing Swiss architect, working in collaboration with the University of Basel’s Centre for African Studies and the Critical Urbanisms program under Prof. Arch. Manuel Herz, where she previously worked as a Lecture-Assistant and Researcher for the book: African Modernism, architecture since Independence (Volume.2). About to enroll into a part-time MBA program at the FHNW, she dedicates her career to enhance the quality of life and increase sustainability through innovative spatial solutions in urban development in African cities, by incorporating intelligent technological responses with positive social impact. Solange has a multi-cultural background and has lived, studied, and worked in Switzerland, Nigeria, Thailand, Italy, Brazil, Cuba and Ireland. She is fluent in English, French, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish.

Khensani de Klerk
Co-Founder of XIMMA

Khensani is a junior architect and planner from Johannesburg, South Africa. Khensani ’s efforts are centred on one core principle: to normalise Architecture as a tool that allows multiple identity groups to be active designers of space. She is focused on how property development, urban design and architecture can be used to improve safety for women in developing cities. She has been a research fellow at ETH Zürich and has worked for Urban-Think Tank, Zurich and Local Studio, Johannesburg. Khensani is also a director at South African NGO Youth in Property Association (YIPA) aimed at transforming youth demographics in the South African property industry.

Mahad Omar
Director of Akram Quality Trading Pty (LTD) and Amiir Poultry Trading CC and Trustee and Co-founder of Group 50 Investment Trust

Mahad Omar is a Somali Born, South African Businessman and he is one of the first Somalians to immigrate to South Africa earlier 1995. He is currently Director of his own two companies in Cape Town, South Africa called Akram Quality Trading Pty (LTD) and Amiir Poultry Trading CC as well as the Former director of “Think Tank” Called Somali Research and Development Counsel (SOMCORD). He is also a trustee and co-founder of Group 50 Investment Trust. Mahad has worked as a Researcher and Manager of international corporations such as Mondi Paper (Division of Anglo American) Pick & Pay PTY LTD.

Rain Morgan
Co-founder of Turqle Trading

Turqle Trading, the company Rain Morgan and Pieter Swart started in 1997 in Cape Town, is a unique entity in the South African business landscape. It is largely focussed on exporting fair-made sauces and spices, and it made a conscious decision – right from the start - to stay small. Their aim is growth for the factories they work with, and the people they sell to. As a committed social enterprise, it donates 25% of its management time to do the work of the World Fair Trade Organisation (WFTO). Rain works on strategy, words, pictures, label art and purpose-building solutions. Rain’s most recent work within the WFTO structure has been to lead the team during the 5 year process of constructing and now, helping to implement a Fair Payment Policy and Process (which includes Local Living Wages) for WFTO members.

Pieter Swart
Co-founder of Turqle Trading

Pieter Swart served 2 terms on the board of WFTO Africa & Middle East and in 2015 he was elected as the Representative for Africa onto the global WFTO board. Pieter was re-elected on to the WFTO global board in 2019 and currently serves as treasurer of the organisation. Pieter has also served on the supervisory board of EL Puente GmbH since October 2019. Pieter’s talents lie in food, planning and untangling/navigating complicated logistics and complex processes. As determined optimists Rain and Pieter believe in a future that will be shaped and built by solution-thinkers in ways we cannot even imagine today.

Abdulaziz Saeed Salad
Executive Director at YOVENCO

Abdulaziz Saed Salah is the Executive Director at YOVENCO. YOVENCO is a somali NGO which aims to improve the lives of the poor people in and around society and the vulnerable especially women and children by improving their livelihoods and protecting their rights through policy advocacy, awareness creation and mobilization of resources.


This year's Summit will focus on key challenges and solutions for investing in Africa. How can some of the continent's brightest ideas shape the future of Africa? To what extent are challenges in Africa embedded in a global interdependent system?


During the Summit, you will attend captivating panel dicussions and keynote speeches on various topics related to Investments in Africa.

Moreover, workshops held by inspiring African success stories will show you the realities of the African business environment, with both challenges and future prospects. Networking events will also take place to create dialog with these leading entrepreneurs and academics.

Day 1 march 23th

Registration (b-mensa, at our stand)

08.00 - 18.00

Day 2 march 24th

investment strategies
09.00 - 09.15 | opening address

09.15 - 10.00 | derick nmandi ikechukwu

10.15 - 11.00 | solange mbafeno & khensani de klerk

11.15 - 12.00 | Panel

Lunch break

14.15 - 15.00 | speech

15.15 - 16.00 | rain morgan & pieter swart

16.15 - 17.00 | abdulaziz saeed salad

17.15 - 18.00 | brian wesaala

18.00 | networking apero

Day 3 march 25th 

emerging investment
09.00 - 09.15 | opening address

09.15 - 10.00 | Burkhard Varnholt

10.15 - 11.00 | Burkhart Varnholt, Martina Fuchs & Karl Pilny | Panel discussion

11.15 - 12.00 | Omar Shafik

Lunch break

14.15 - 15.00 | Mahad Omar

15.15 - 16.00 | Carsten Böhler

16.15 - 17.00 | Morgan Swart & Carsten Böhler

17.15 - 18.00 | Lukas Steiner

18.15 | Closin Panel & Apero

Sign up now for FREE! 


The Africa Summit Team

Mohamed Mahmoud President
Ali Jouini Vice-President
Flavia Biri Co-head of Sponsoring
Estelle Marti Co-head of Sponsoring
Noemi Ganarin
Joel Goux
Xavier Poublot
David Campbell Head of Marketing
Louis Foudil
Norielys Cabral
David Ojo Head of Speakers
Habib Osman
Aliber Mamuti
Deniz Bisignano
Weza Bombo Head of Logistics
Jennifer Richardson
Eli Joao Mambu Head of Events
Olisaemeka Onwusonye
Ikechukwu Onwusonye
Nobin Kachirayil Head of Finance and IT

We are looking forward to seeing you in March!


Get In Touch

For any questions, concerns or suggestions regarding the 2020 Africa Summit St. Gallen by AIESEC, please send us an e-mail and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

AIESEC St.Gallen
Dufourstrasse 50B
9000 Saint Gallen