and set a challenge to Kenyan stock exchange to redouble efforts to expand African markets, in his opening speech.”
Sofie was delighted this week to speak for hiveonline in a keynote at the 7th Annual Building African Financial Markets Seminar (BAFM), hosted by the Nairobi Stock Exchange. The conference was for exchanges, governments, banks and investors to discuss how to further develop African markets.
The struggles currently faced by stock exchanges growing in African countries revolve around meeting the international standards for listing. As it is, meeting these stringent and expensive standards present challenges for the growth of exchange markets for developing economies. Today there are only 64 companies listed on the Nairobi stock exchange. This is shockingly few for such a thriving and populated country like Kenya, a population of over 48 million people.
Stock exchanges are vital to enable companies, both big and small, to grow and develop. Luckily progress is already being made with M-AKIBA clearing the way by giving anyone in Kenya the chance to invest in bonds through a bank or M-Pesa account, something that so far has been successful. But how does hiveonline come into the picture?
M-AKIBA is based on governmental bonds, but there could be greater opportunities to open up investment in company shares (equities). In our keynote Sofie spoke about our microfinance model, describing a way to focus more on very small businesses, bringing investment and finance to the smallest and most disadvantaged businesses on the continent. The hiveonline model addresses lots of long-standing unanswered questions about how to build a prosperous financial ecosystem. Safe to say the crowd were hanging on our every word, we were incredibly well received at the conference and later on social media platforms.
The 7th BAFM was strongly focused on FinTech and Blockchain, which we at hiveonline were thrilled to see. We were also very happy to see our friends from the World Federation of Exchanges Siobhan Cleary and the United Nations Dr Antony Miller, speaking about sustainable investment and the SDGs. On the FinTech panel, Farida Bedwei described Logiciel’s own microfinance platform while Jules Roberts, CEO of GreeFi, described reward coin models similar to hiveonline’s supporting agricultural economies, and on the Blockchain panel we saw Reggie Middleton CEO of Veritaseum talking about how cryptocurrency can verify capital markets products. It was great to see these panels talking our language and backing up how much good we can really do.