African tech space has been recently the home of more linkages since many are required to do so within it. These are both for encouraging more investments and making sure the startup that indeed raises funds in the bank are served better.
According to Disrupt Africa, the year 2017 was a record-breaking time when it comes to African’s tech fundraising. However, investors of all level are still lacking. The report also pointed out to angel investors’ case as dozens of angel groups are forming across the continent under African Business Angel Network, also known as ABAN’s, general banner. To build linkages is particularly difficult on angel investing.
Collins Onuegbu expressed his thoughts towards the matter saying, “Initially we could not get traction because we did not have enough members. We needed to build enough capacity to allow us to invest.” Onuegbu is a partner at the Lagos Angel Network (LAN) and he believes that getting enough people involved in the most basic struggle.
He added, “Doing that allowed us to expand our base. What we have done as LAN itself is still a work in progress. We are using syndicates to expand our capacity. We have a secretariat that has helped us build the structure that we need. It helps us link up with the startups and the pipelines.”
Moreover, the founder of NewGenAngels named Sean Obedih has addressed the need for additional linkage between African startups and Africans in the diaspora.
“There is a big part of the African population that lives outside of Africa. Everyone talks about the diaspora sending money back home, but nobody talks about what that is being used for. There is no infrastructure for channeling it into companies. That infrastructure to invest in things is what is required more than the money,” Obedih explained.
Certain types of linkages tend to develop between universities and the communities around them. We venture to look at some of those linkages.
Firstly, we have the situations where the universities tend to be major employers of the people from the communities around them. Granted, the professors and other members of the high level teaching staff cadre tend to be from far away. But the support staff members tend to be drawn from the communities around the universities. And even the staff members who initially come from far away tend to settle and subsequently become bona fide members of the communities around the universities.
Secondly, we have the situations where the universities tend to be major markets for the products made by the members of the communities around them. Where, for instance, we have farming communities, you tend to have the universities being major consumers of the farm produce. In places where you have trading communities, the students and staff members in the universities tend to be key customers. To prove this, you can try selling any sort of products, like, say the best wireless headphones around a university. Or you can try selling something else, like, say, professional headphones around a university. What you will quickly come to learn is that the people from the university are likely to be key customers for you.
Thirdly, we have the situations where the universities tend to have some members of the communities around them as students. Thus, the universities provide educational opportunities to the surrounding communities. Granted, in the hard-to-get-into universities, like those in Ivy League, the local communities tend to be poorly represented in the student body (as the bulk of students come from all over the country, and even from abroad). But for other classes of universities, you tend to have local communities very well represented in the student populations.
One important way to spur innovation and business development is by creating linkages between entrepreneurs and venture capitalists. Such linkages, between entrepreneurs and venture capitalists, can (among other ways) be created using the Internet.
The way to go about creating the linkages between the entrepreneurs and the venture capitalists using the Internet is actually very simple. It usually boils down to setting up a website, where the entrepreneurs and venture capitalists can get to interact. The interaction has to be structured though: it can’t, for instance, be simply a question of going to the Sbcglobal.net login page, or to the Att.net email login page, and using a system like SBCGlobal email to have the entrepreneurs communicate with the venture capitalists. You have to appreciate that the venture capitalists are often ‘serious’ people: the sorts of folks who cut big-deals through major investment banks such as JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley. Thus, as the person trying to create the linkages, you need to ensure that you only link the venture capitalists with reasonably serious entrepreneurs.
For taking the trouble to create linkages between entrepreneurs and venture capitalists through the Internet, you are likely to end up being rewarded very handsomely. So the whole thing is worth the trouble.
Computers play a central role in today’s businesses. As a consequence, in majority of business organizations, the IT department (which is in charge of computers) plays a very central role. People in other departments have to be well linked to the IT department, to ensure that the IT problems they encounter are resolved quickly, in order to enhance efficiency at work.
One way to create linkages between the IT department and staff in other departments is by setting up a phone number which anyone within the organization who encounters an IT problem can call. This is the most commonly used model, and it works well in small organizations where the offices of the IT department are within a walking distance from the offices of the other departments.
Another way to create linkage between the IT department and staff in other departments is by setting up a mechanism for the people in the IT department to be able to provide IT support remotely. This is possible using the sort of technology that is deployed at a site like www.logmeinrescue.com: that being the remote support technology. In big organizations such as the United States department of agriculture, this model would make a lot of sense.
If you are involved in the manufacture of vacuum cleaners for export, then one of the most important tasks for you will be that of packaging the machines in readiness for export.
The first step in the process of packaging vacuum cleaners in readiness for export is the one where you effectively wrap them in protective packaging. The idea is to avoid a situation where the vacuum cleaners are so badly knocked about in the course of transportation (say, in turbulent seas) that they develop technical problems even before they arrive at the intended markets.
The second step in the process of packaging vacuum cleaners in readiness for export is the one where you put them in appropriately branded and labeled cartons/boxes. If, for instance, you want them to be perceived as being the best hard floor vacuum cleaners, this should come out clearly from the branding. The packaging should also be well labeled, to indicate the intended final destination for the vacuum cleaners.
The third step in the process of packaging vacuum cleaners in readiness for export is the one where you put them in shipping containers. Nowadays, this is essential, especially if you are to transport the vacuum cleaners by sea, using global shipping agencies like Maersk and others like it.
It is possible to leverage on technology to create linkages between the leaders and the citizens.
One scheme you can use, when seeking to leverage on technology to create linkages between the leaders and the citizens is the one where set up phone numbers that the citizens can use, to reach their leaders directly. The challenge with this approach is in the fact that the leaders may end up having to spend too much of their time taking the phone calls from the people. This is because too many people are likely to be having something to tell the leaders.
Another scheme you can use, when seeking to leverage on technology to create linkages between the leaders and the citizens is the one where you set up text lines (for SMS), that the citizens can use to reach their leaders directly. In terms of convenience, this is much better than having the phone calls: as the leader can, in this case, set aside specific blocks of time to be dealing with the texts. To get the system working, the staffers of the leader can even go to a site like CNet and try to see if they can find convenience-enhancing software. That is software which can make it possible for the leader to be getting and dealing with the texts while traveling, while waiting for flights, between meetings and so on.
Yet another scheme that you can use, when seeking to leverage on technology to create linkages between the leaders and the citizens, is the one where you set up an email address which the citizens can use to reach the leaders directly.
There are other more complex schemes: like the one where you can use tele-conferencing or video conferencing. But the complexities associated with such schemes make them unviable, especially when you want to really want to have a mechanism that the masses can use to reach their leaders directly.