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Darkies in Tech: Driving Transformation and Representation in South Africa's Tech Ecosystem at SMMEs in ICT Summit and Expo

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Author: JT Comms
Date: 13 Jul 2023

Darkies in Tech (DIT), a community of exceptional black tech founders, investors, and ecosystem builders, is proud to announce its participation in the SMMEs in ICT Summit and Expo taking place on 13 July at the Sandon’s International Convention Centre. The summit serves as a platform for industry leaders to come together and discuss the vital role that the government and private sector play in the development of SMMEs. Darkies in Tech aims to contribute to the discussion by highlighting the importance of empowering black innovators in the ICT sector.

The vision of Darkies in Tech is to be the largest and most influential afro-centric tech community on the African continent. By leveraging collective influence, DIT seeks to shape local startup policies, foster knowledge sharing, and increase investment in African innovation.

With a rapidly growing community, Darkies in Tech currently boasts over 120 members across South Africa, comprised of roughly 70% who are founder/executives with the rest representing the funding and ecosystem partner community. These members collectively employ hundreds of people on a full-time basis and their representative stages span across various early stage/pre seed startups through to series c startups.

"With the organizers of the SMMEs ICT Summit and Expo focusing on the need to effectively utilize ICT to enhance business growth and exchange information on the latest ICT operations, policies, and processes, our goal as a collective intentional Black Tech ecosystem is to assertively showcase and market our startups at the summit. We recognize that this platform offers numerous business networking opportunities, potential for growth, and exposure to new technology innovations and investments," says Onkgopotse Khumalo Community Liaison at Darkies in Tech and Founder of Pocketcouch

DIT recognizes the significance of representation and inclusion in the ICT sector. By fostering connections, driving transformation, and increasing investment in African innovation, Darkies in Tech aims to create an equal and representative tech ecosystem. The community's mission aligns with the objectives of the SMMEs in ICT Summit and Expo, making it an ideal platform to showcase the initiatives and contributions of Darkies in Tech.

As influential leaders from different public and private sector organizations gather at the summit, Darkies in Tech will actively engage with industry leaders, policymakers, and stakeholders. By highlighting the accomplishments and potential of black innovators in the ICT sector, Darkies in Tech aims to foster collaboration, raise awareness, and create opportunities for growth and empowerment.

"We are excited to participate in the SMMEs in ICT Summit and Expo and contribute to the discussion on empowering black innovators in the ICT sector," says Arnold Sigauque Advocacy & Policy Lead at Darkies in Tech and CEO of GHEA. "We believe that by promoting diversity and representation, we can drive meaningful change and create a tech ecosystem that truly reflects the talent and potential of black African innovators,’ adds Sigauque.

Darkies in Tech welcomes the opportunity to connect with influential leaders from various organizations, including the Black Business Council, B-BBEEE ICT sector Charter Council, The Black IT Forum (BITF), and the Youth ICT Council. Through collaboration and partnerships, Darkies in Tech aims to shape local startup policies, foster knowledge sharing, and increase investment in African innovation.

“We are committed to cultivating a tech environment that gives startups the best chance of success, by fostering inclusive collaboration within the broader tech ecosystem“ says Sigauque. “Our view is that diversifying funding sources, promoting inclusive and transparent procurement practices, aligning funding and procurement cycles, are essential collaborative actions between the government and private sector that will drive the overall development of ICT SMMEs and Tech Startups. DiT aims to catalyze these initiatives, with the aim to create a tech ecosystem that truly represents and empowers black African innovators,” says Sigauque.

"We invite like-minded individuals to join our community, contribute to shared learnings, and collaborate for mutual growth of the South African Tech economies," says Khumalo "I'm incredibly honoured to be an active member of the Darkies in Tech community.

“The DiT network provides a great space for community, where black entrepreneurs can share their experiences and navigate the tech landscape together. It offers opportunities to learn from one another, foster collaborations, and have candid conversations about the challenges and opportunities we face as black African tech founders. Through warm introductions and thought partnership, we can stress test assumptions, find the path of least resistance, and accelerate the growth trajectory of 'Darkies in Tech'. I'm optimistic about the collective power of our community to drive success and make a lasting impact” concludes Khumalo

For media inquiries or to schedule an interview with Darkies in Tech representatives at the SMMEs in ICT Summit and Expo, please contact:

Darkies in Tech - Email: media@jtcomms.co.za

Phone: (011) 788 7632 – 083 954 6133

This release is Issued and Supported by JT Communication Solutions on Behalf of Darkies in Tech (DiT)

About Darkies in Tech

Darkies in Tech (DIT) is a community of excellent black tech founders, investors, and ecosystem builders. DIT aims to facilitate connections, drive transformation, and increase investment in African innovation. By fostering diversity, representation, and collaboration, Darkies in Tech strives to create an equal and representative tech ecosystem that empowers black African innovators.

Note to Editors:

Please include the organization's full name, "Darkies in Tech," when referencing the community.

Darkies in Tech welcomes the opportunity to connect with influential leaders from various organizations, including the Black Business Council, B-BBEEE ICT Sector Charter Council, The Black IT Forum (BITF), and the Youth ICT Council. Through collaboration and partnerships, Darkies in Tech aims to shape local startup policies, foster knowledge sharing, and increase investment in African innovation.

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