Following consultation with key stakeholders in its inaugural WiT Africa, scheduled for May 28, WiT has decided to reschedule its Cape Town event.
The deteriorating situation over Covid-19, which has seen it gone global in its outbreak in recent weeks and travel restrictions implemented worldwide, necessitated the decision.
“We are gutted, we were all looking forward to our first event in Africa
and our partners are equally disappointed. We had put together a really strong
programme with a cast of top speakers from across Africa, Europe, US and Asia.
But it’s the right decision given the circumstances,” said Yeoh Siew Hoon, founder,
A new date will be advised at a later time. The venue, Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel, remains unchanged and Foundation Sponsors (Travelstart, Wego, Cleartrip and Amadeus) as well as Destination Partner (Singapore Tourism Board) remain committed to the event.
Said Stephan Ekbergh, CEO of Travelstart, WiT’s key partner for the African event, “My team and I are disappointed. We were looking forward to welcoming WiT and its community to our home and had planned a quality programme. But with things unfolding as they are in Africa currently, it will be a challenge to organise an event.
“The good news is, we are staying in the same venue, which is a
wonderful space, and we promise an even better experience when we return. By
then, we hope the world will look very different from now, and there will be
great stories and lessons to share.”
As the second fastest growing tourism region in the world, after Asia Pacific, Africa remains a promising market. Its inbound market registered 67 million international arrivals in 2019 (Jumia Hospitality Report Africa 2019) and its outbound travel is fuelled by a population that is young, urban, and highly mobile and social. The mobile industry is estimated to contribute $185 billion to Africa’s economy (9.1% of total GDP) by 2023. Africa is the second largest internet population after China, with smartphone adoption predicted to rise from 36% in 2018 to 66% by 2025.
“It is for these reasons that we wanted to take the natural next step for WiT,” added Siew Hoon. “Those fundamentals have not changed.”
• Featured image (aerial view of Cape Town) credit: Getty Images