AfricaCom is a big deal for anyone interested in Africa’s media, tech and telecommunications landscape. We’ve covered the event for the past 3 years and enjoyed learning so much whilst doing so. This year’s event will be a bit different and won’t require anyone to actually attend the event in Cape Town where it’s normally held.
Because of COVID-19, event organiser’s has reconsidered the approach for the 2020 event taking place between 9 and 13 November. This year the event will be held virtually and will include other events – AfricaTech and a selection of co-located events.
AfricaCom published the following statement to that effect on their website;
COVID-19 UPDATE: VIRTUAL EVENT
After an extensive period of review and consultation, we have decided to proactively transform AfricaCom, AfricaTech and all our co-located conferences into fully-virtual events in 2020. Taking place together over a week, from 9th – 13th November, these events will become known as the Virtual Africa Tech Festival.
The health and wellbeing of our large, diverse community is of paramount importance and we believe that this decision is in the best interest of everybody involved, particularly given the scale of our events and how many people fly to Cape Town for them.
Realising the full transformative potential of tech with greater urgency will require collaboration, creativity, education and focus. At a time when physical, face-to-face contact is more difficult, Virtual Africa Tech Festival will provide a broad digital platform from which to unify and accelerate these efforts.
Going virtual in 2020 presents an excellent opportunity to make our events infinitely more accessible both within Africa and beyond. An internet connection is now all that is required to participate and be part of a community that is actively shaping Africa’s digital future. Geo and logistical restrictions are a thing of the past.
Despite the event being virtual AfricaCom is still offering digital exhibits and sponsorship opportunities. This suggests that certain passes will still be paid for by attendees. It will be interesting to see what perks will be provided virtually to differentiating between paying and non-paying attendees.
The fact that the event will be held online will probably open up the event to many more attendees since people don’t have to stress about booking flights and going to a different country for an entire week.