Brightest Young Minds Summit to explore and invest in the potential of African youth


A hundred action orientated young people between the ages of 20 and 32 will spend the next five days coming up with innovative solutions to the various developmental challenges faced by Africa.

The annual Brightest Young Minds (BYM) Summit, which will take place from 22-26 June 2016 will empower young people with the training, support and learning they need to enhance their employment and self-employment prospects.

According to Stephen van Coller, Barclays Africa Chief Executive Officer for Corporate and Investment Banking, Absa a member of Barclays, is proud to be the sole strategic partner and sponsor of the summit for the third consecutive year.

“This year the summit is themed ‘Shaping the future now’ will accommodate 100 of Africa’s most innovative leaders to come together with the nation’s decision makers and craft solutions to developmental challenges outlined in the National Development Plan. Our partnership with BYM demonstrates our ongoing commitment to innovation and shared growth across the continent,” says van Coller.

Education and training is a critical investment for the bank. Barclays Africa has put aside R1.4 billion for education and skills training across the continent over the next three years.

The announcement of the investment, to facilitate skills development and access to quality education, was made on 1 March 2016, at the presentation of the group’s annual results. Over the next three years, the Barclays Africa investment will be used for:

  • ReadytoWork: which will offer skills training to 250 000 young people, in 2016
  • Scholarships: which will support an estimated 250 disadvantaged students, in 2016
  • Technical Vocational Education and Training colleges:to support their administration and offer students workplace exposure
  • University support: for academic research and innovation; and
  • Consumer Education: to increase financial literacy, and awareness about the need for insurance.

“The BYM Summit is just one of many initiatives that Barclays Africa supports to foster shared growth.  We are committed to our shared growth strategy which allows for a positive impact on society while delivering shareholder value,” says van Coller.

The final phase of the summit truly sets BYM apart. Delegates work in teams to design start-up like solutions to social, economic and/or cultural challenges in just 24 hours. Their problem-shattering ideas will be presented to a panel with the possibility of being awarded funding and implementation support.

Absa a member of Barclays, will aim to facilitate and/or accelerate the winning team’s solution and ideas of the NDP challenges, further illustrating the bank’s commitment to its shared growth business strategy.

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