International tech community explores collaborative links with the CiTi
International technology based community The Hague Tech enters into a partnership with the Cape Initiative of Innovation and Technology (CiTi). The partnership focuses on start-up acceleration and innovation by connecting The Hague Tech and CiTi ecosystems with the aim of generating opportunities for business, knowledge exchange and the bolstering of international investment in both countries.
The Hague Tech's and innovation eco-system share many of the same values as CiTi and Cape Town’s digital startup community. "We believe that this partnership can benefit both The Hague and Cape Town and we are excited to start working on this cross continent tech collaboration,” said Ian Merrington, CEO of CiTi.
The aim of this partnership is to build a bridge between The Hague Tech and Cape Town and co-create solutions with South African partners. The South African tech ecosystem provides great opportunities for our community members. Cape Town has a great infrastructure with more than 25 tech communities. "It is diverse and a perfect testing ground for global solutions and the focus on accessibility and low costs is unique,” stated Brian Gharibaan, Co-founder, of The Hague Tech.
The signing ceremony was attended by Karsten Klein, Deputy Mayor of the City of the Hague and Netherlands Consul General Bonnie Horbach.
“As an international city, The Hague places great importance in international partnerships that contribute to the city’s key sectors such as our thriving impact start-up community, and our security and IT sectors. Not only is South Africa a promising market, it is also the digital gateway to the rest of Africa. My visit to Cape Town allowed me to see with my own eyes why it has earned the nickname Silicon Cape,” said Klein.
The Hague Tech wants to play a role for South African start-ups that want to access the European market. With similar time zones, efficient and effective way of working and networks that can provide access to start-up visa's, grants and capital, The Hague Tech believes that it can empower South African partners. An initiative of Innovus, the interaction and innovation company of Stellenbosch University, also showed interest in exploring collaborative opportunities with The Hague Tech.
On the one hand, Dutch start-ups and scale-ups will have access to a home base for doing business in Africa, and gain access to a large network of potential customers, investors, and talented employees. On the other hand, The Hague Tech can offer access to the Dutch and European markets for up and coming South African start-ups and scale-ups. "The Hague is a great entry point for young, innovative technology companies, and partnerships as these serve to strengthen the sector,” said Klein.
“Africa is the place to be if you’re serious about growth and opportunity- the place where the rest of the world is looking to invest and trade. The fourth industrial revolution and the innovation associated with it, makes it possible for Africa (with its clean slate) to leapfrog. This together with strategic partnerships and collaboration means endless opportunities in building resilient cities” stated Horbach.
#cocreateSA is a platform for South African and Dutch counterparts to exchange ideas and innovations for a sustainable future. It stimulates collaboration between South Africa and the Netherlands based on the belief that if we work together, we can make a difference and co-create solutions for local challenges. #cocreateSA is an initiative of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in South Africa, capturing the true essence of modern foreign diplomacy: building relationships, putting the demand at the core of our discussions and focusing on long-term commitments and partnerships.
The Cape Innovation and Technology Initiative (CiTi), develops globally competitive tech and innovation sectors to enable sustainable economic growth and greater employment. For more on CiTi: www.citi.org.za
“Our aim is to build a bridge between The Hague Tech and Cape Town and co-create solutions with South African partners. "