Tag: CSR

An unconventional suggestion to tackle unemployment

An unconventional suggestion to tackle unemployment

Employment prospects through CSR programmes.

It’s incredible how high the unemployment rates have persisted in the Mediterranean basin. Without an end in sight, the percentage of those out of work has steadily gone up, despite the opportunities for growth in the agricultural sector.

Mainly, countries rich in biodiversity, including Greece, Spain, Italy, Croatia, and Cyprus have untapped potential to make their agricultural output great again. Instead of crafting work relief programs, these countries are misguided through desperate actions of claiming loans to fund more debt and social welfare initiatives.

Work-relief programme vs Social welfare programme

Do not get me wrong; I believe that social welfare is useful for those not able to work and in danger of falling into the poverty trap. However, a nation-wide work relief program would be more beneficial in the long run for the individual and society. Millions of long-term unemployed Mediterranean would preserve their dignity and working skills.


To address this unfortunate economic phenomenon, the high-performing corporations could exercise impactful corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs across geographical borders. By joining forces with the public sector of countries plagued with high unemployment rates, CSR programs can be designed to establish long-term work- and skills development projects, particularly in the fields of sustainable agribusiness and GreenTech.

Perhaps the European Commission and its member-states could mandate an incentive-driven program for enterprises of all sizes to create employment and stem a tide of societal degeneration?

Corruption is a byproduct

I know the cynics reading this would scream this proposal as a breeding ground for fraud and corruption. But realise this: Corruption is a byproduct of Public-Private Partnership (PPP), and only behavioural reform and possibly technology can banish fraudulent activities. Your argument is welcomed in this respect.

A work relief program initiated by CSR and powered through PPP may force high initial investments with no immediate returns, but in the long run, the benefits include high national output, healthy competition, higher consumer spending, preserved self-respect for those out of work, and more.

Just a thought. What are yours?



image courtesy thebalance.com

Turkish Airlines dominates African tarmac

How Turkish Airlines positioned itself onto Africa’s tarmac

Contrary to beggars belief, Africans love to travel.

A rising wave of Africans increasingly takes advantage of their favourite airline frequent flyer programme syndicate. Despite the media attempting to shape your mindset of desperate Africans travelling mainly by rubber raft or bare-footed across the hot Sahara desert, an emerging population of middle-class Africans are benefiting from airlines meeting their relevant needs.

Get the perks right

Mostly, Africans in Diaspora contribute to the changing travel habits of Africa and typically remain brand-loyal to their favourite airline if their travelling demands are met. Popular among African tourists are features such as generous baggage allowance, bad-ass onboard entertainment and civil customer service, precisely in this order of priority.

Africa’s travel industry is booming

Turkish Airlines has carved a competitive strategy by banking on the rising number of African tourists. Operating from its central hub in Istanbul, the national flag carrier airline commands 116 flight routes worldwide, of which 50 include countries across Africa. (Sorry, I just need to ask this: You do know, that Africa is a continent with 54 countries, right?? Just checking…).

As a member of the Star Alliance syndicate, Turkish Airlines has recognised the potential of Africa and the commercial appetite of investors to facilitate an international trade to emerging markets. The imminent global economic growth shift from Asia to Africa is a financial opportunity for airlines to connect the continent with the rest of the world. It is a win-win situation.

It’s a cut-throat business

The airline industry is among the most competitive and a rough business to be in, but also very lucrative, if planned and executed strategically. Recently ranked as the fastest growing airline globally, Turkish Airlines is a force to be reckoned with, despite the recent political unrest and security challenges in the Republic of Turkey. Nevertheless, it is worth to keep an eye on how Turkish Airlines positions itself on Africa’s tarmac.

What are your thoughts?

Using CSR marketing to confront the cancer epidemic

Using CSR marketing to confront the cancer epidemic

Using CSR marketing to ensure healthy lives

It seems like all we hear about these days is the topic of cancer. Why is that?

The gruesome fact is that hardly any of us will be spared by cancer. One way or the other, either yourself or someone close to you will be afflicted with this prevalent disease.

But don’t worry. If you are based in the developed world, you will be alright. Most middle- and high-income countries have all the facilities to prevent and treat cancer. Africa, on the other hand, has too many patients and not enough cancer specialists nor equipment.


Impressive advancements have been made to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.

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Behind every challenge lies an opportunity. Strides are made to confront the rising cancer crisis around the world.

Technologically advanced countries in the Sub-Saharan region, such as Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa actively seek to collaborate with top cancer experts in Europe and elsewhere on research and development programmes customised to local needs.

Cancer registries are virtually non-existent in most African countries. So far, only the African Cancer Registry Network (AFCRN) established in March 2012 is carrying the burden of collecting data on patient history, diagnosis and treatment.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) established a Programme of Action for Cancer Therapy (PACT) in partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO) and other organisations are working towards cancer control.

We can all be instrumental in confronting the cancer epidemic across the world. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a powerful mechanism to initiate market expansion across geographical borders, attract and boost engagement with loyal customers who can relate to the campaign.


Watch this short video to recognise opportunities of cancer treatment and prevention in Africa

Nwabisa Mayema

Nwabisa Mayema

Aphropean Partners is proud to present Nwabisa Mayema

Nwabisa Mayema joins a panel of leading experts and practitioners to share her insights on Corporate Social Responsibility Across Borders: Kenya, Nigeria & South Africa on the third series of #FOD17 Frontiers of Dialogue held on 21 September 2017 in Vienna, Austria.

An entrepreneur with a zest for life and adventure. Nwabisa is passionate about developing female entrepreneurs across the African continent. She is nominated as one of Inspiring Fifty South Africa 2017 and listed as one of the Independent Media Group’s Top 100 Young Independents of Inspiring and Aspiring Young South Africans (innovation category).

As the Executive Director (one of two) of nnfinity, Nwabisa focuses on delivering knowledge and insights to multinational corporations and globally-minded education institutions on social entrepreneurship and female-specific enterprise development.

Nwabisa is a natural networker, which allows for nnfinity to direct its efforts towards fostering the growth of female entrepreneurs through relationships and networks. Nwabisa is also the co-founder of The Collective Genius, a youth-oriented consultancy in corporate social responsibility.  

Nwabisa Mayema holds a Bachelor Degree in Public Policy & Administration and Political Science

The Business of Sustainability

The Business of Sustainability

Learn. Diversify. Adopt.

Distracted by the financial and migration crisis of the past few years has left Austrian businesses hard pressed to grow. Instead, many companies have been forced to become more risk averse, affecting the export market. But shying away from expanding into new markets will get us nowhere.

What it takes to gain an advantage.

It takes a risk taker armed with data, local partners and reliant cash flow to invest in the emerging markets successfully. So, it should not come to a surprise that the share of Austrian exports to Sub Saharan Africa peaked at 0.6% trade volume in 2016. That is not even 1%! Just imagine the benefits reaped from a monopolised position by these key players in Kenya, Nigeria, Kenya and other investment destinations.

Today’s climate presents an opportunity for you to increase revenues and profits in the long run. Austria’s well-funded program in start ups, green innovation, and digital solutions has made the execution of an internationalisation strategy easier today than yesterday. Now has come the right time to build on strategic partnerships, learn about options to diversify and adopt the smart business of sustainability.

Learn. Diversify. Adopt.

Among existing core strategies to develop your business, consider expanding to the sustainability market of developing countries. Sustainability is a trending element to innovative business models and ambiguous in the definition. In Europe, the ecological component of sustainability is of highest priority to manage climate change. In Africa, it is the economic part of sustainability that ranks first to improve the quality standards of living. But you probably know that.

At the upcoming Frontiers of Dialogue held on 7 September 2017, accompanied by a distinguished panel with Africa experience, we will explore together the opportunities and challenges of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Across Borders with a focus on Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa. As you look forward, consider sustainable business and CSR initiatives for growth to acquire new customers, build strategic partnerships, expand into new markets and new product/service additions.

Challenge the status quo.

To bridge the sustainability market with Africa, you need to understand the business conduct and market demands fully. Those of you who have already attempted trading in Africa: what your business did to be successful in the past might not be ideal to in the future. Africa is connected and enlightened today more than ever before.

The underserved markets of Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa demands technology, know-how, and investments to develop in water and sanitation, agriculture, health, and education.

Too many Austrian businesses fail to realise the high potentials of combining business with sustainability and ethics to expand to Africa’s emerging markets. Of course, this comes with a higher level of risk taking, trust and understanding. The strategic and cross-cultural partnership is crucial to the success of international business relations. You need to have a knowledge of the sustainability market, opportunities and challenges of the underserved emerging markets in Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa.

Leverage on your strengths.

Austria should not be intimidated by uncertainty and the barriers set by China and the US. Instead, we should leverage our strengths of social capital, high-quality production of energy efficient solutions and knowledge-intensive services.

Let us challenge the conventional thinking about doing business in Africa by asking the right questions. Together we can increase our understanding of the international business of sustainability. We shall explore innovative solutions and ideas to bridging the sustainability market between Austria and Africa’s emerging markets.

Join the upcoming Frontiers of Dialogue on CSR Across Borders: Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa held on 7 September 2017, 18:00h at the Salon Razumovsky, 1030 Vienna.
More info about the event.

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Chuks Ojeme

Chuks Ojeme

Aphropean Partners is proud to present Chuks Ojeme, MSc.

Chuks Ojeme joins a panel of leading experts and practitioners to share his insights on
Corporate Social Responsibility Across Borders: Kenya, Nigeria & South Africa on the third series of #FOD17 Frontiers of Dialogue held on 21 September 2017 in Vienna, Austria.

Chuks Ojeme is a cyber security and forensic consultant with years experience of advising corporations how to survive in an advanced, adaptive and persistent cyber risk environment. He is an expert in transformational strategy and a leadership facilitator for volatile, digital business & governance climates.

Presently, Chuks leads the information security audit and carries out strategies to mitigate cyber attacks as chief information security officer at Gebauer & Griller.

As founder of the nonprofit organisation, Conscience Matters, Chuks is charged with the responsibility of restoring fast degenerating human values caused by a nearly failed conflict resolution mechanism.

Chuks holds a Master of Science from the University of Applied Sciences in Vienna and is professionally certified as Project Management Professional (PMP), Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), Certified Internet Web Security Analyst (CIWSA), Cisco Information Security Specialist (CISS), Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS), Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MSCA).

Hans Stoisser

Hans Stoisser

Aphropean Partners is proud to present Mag. Hans Stoisser.

Hans Stoisser joins a panel of leading experts and practitioners to share his insights on Corporate Social Responsibility Across Borders: Kenya, Nigeria & South Africa on the third series of #FOD17 Frontiers of Dialogue held on 21 September 2017 in Vienna, Austria.

Hans Stoisser is an entrepreneur, management consultant and author with long-time experience in Africa’s emerging countries. In his book “Der Schwarze Tiger” he explains why Europe has missed to link up with modern Africa and what could be done instead. Currently, he offers seminars in “Silicon Savannah” in Nairobi, one of Africa’s innovation hubs.

Hans Stoisser hat mehr als 30 Jahre lang Infrastruktur in Dritte-Welt-Ländern aufgebaut. Seit 1992 leitet er die Managementberatung ECOTEC, die unter anderem in Bulgarien, Palästina und Brasilien, vor allem aber in vielen afrikanischen Ländern, tätig war. In seinem im November 2015 erschienen Buch „Der schwarze Tiger – Was wir von Afrika lernen können“ erklärt der Ökonom das andere Afrika, das wir in Europa nicht zur Kenntnis nehmen wollen.

Derzeit organisiert er Seminare im „Silicon Savannah“ in Nairobi, einem der Hotspots des digitalen Afrikas. Er bloggt unter www.hansstoisser.com .

Doris Österreicher

Doris Österreicher

Aphropean Partners is proud to present Dr Doris Österreicher.

Doris Österreicher joins a panel of leading experts and practitioners to share her insights on Corporate Social Responsibility Across Borders: Kenya, Nigeria & South Africa on the third series of #FOD17 Frontiers of Dialogue held on 21 September 2017 in Vienna, Austria.

Doris Österreicher is a lecturer and researcher at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences (BOKU) in Vienna. Her research work concentrates mainly on energy-related concepts, design and methods in climate adaptive architecture and urban planning.

Before joining the university in 2015 she was Head of the Business Unit Sustainable Buildings and Cities in the Energy Department of the Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT), leading the topics Smart Buildings and Smart Cities and Regions.

Prior to starting at AIT in Vienna in 2006, Doris worked for over eight years overseas, mainly as an environmental designer in London, providing consultancy for many signature innovative low energy buildings.

Her work focused on design and simulation in the field of energy efficiency and daylight modelling as well as integrative measures for architecture and building system concepts.

Before that, she worked as an Architect for a well-known architectural company in London as well as with architects in Massachusetts, USA and Vienna, Austria. She additionally works as a consultant for international projects, lectures on environmental design and serves as a tutor and juror for architectural critics.

Doris is a qualified architect in Austria, and the UK holds a Dipl. Ing. and Dr.techn. in Architecture from the Vienna University of Technology and received the state price ‘award of excellence’ for her doctoral dissertation.

She also holds an MSc in Architecture, Advanced Environmental and Energy Studies from the University of East London.

Profitable sustainability is not a cakewalk

Profitable sustainability is not a cakewalk

How to draw a roadmap to sustainable business

Cashflow is the lifeblood of every business. Most companies cannot afford to look beyond profitability in the short run. But sometimes you just gotta to give. Strategic planners with foresight recognise the attractive returns of social responsibility, despite reaping returns more in the long run.

What leads you to sustainable development goals? Which stakeholder plays a crucial role in the value chain? There are four primary value chain components that stand out in a strategic sustainability business model:

The Product

Produce goods and deliver services sustainably and profitably. How? By taking in consideration three sustainable components: 1) working conditions, 2) raw materials and 3) environmental performance.

Take for example Mondi Group, the paper and packaging company. Recently, the international organisation rolled out its sustainability strategy program. This complicated process involves all the company stakeholders and requires thorough due diligence on Mondi’s vast supplier network spread across 30 countries.

Also, Mondi’s sustainability policies and management systems focus on key global trends affecting society and business, including:

  • modern slavery and unsavoury working conditions;
  • ethical sourcing of raw materials;
  • reducing deforestation through forest-friendly policies such as the Growing Responsibly Model.

You may be interested to know how to conduct Due Diligence for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas. Learn about the OECD Guidelines.

The Employee

Staff play a fundamental role as CSR-ambassadors. Notably, the Millennial generation (born 1980-2000) tend to adopt socially responsible values. As you already know, engaged employees who relate with the company values tend to perform better and push profits to upper levels.

Large organisations such as Mondi plc take more time and effort to implement and adapt revised changes to business operations. The effort to meet profitable sustainability objectives comes at a high cost – bigger budget allocations to human resource for staff training as well the marketing department. The organisation`s social responsibility marketing strategy weighs heavy on communication and carefully orchestrated campaigns. Company resources are largely funded to promote the means and ends of sustainable profitability measures within internal and external business operations.

The Customer

You cannot ignore the rising demands for sustainable products and services.

Mondi plc recognises this.

Customers in Europe respond more to climate change management and environmental efficiency and are likely to have the means to pay for biodegradable packaging. Whereas the customers in Africa refer to sustainability as a way to save cost for maximum output in Africa.

I wonder how Mondi tackles the dilemma of producing quality environmentally friendly paper and packaging at affordable prices.  Perhaps you can tell me.

There are multiple ways to engage with existing and potential customers. Social Media is a great medium to listen and obtain direct feedback from customers. You need to keep your green enthusiasts happy. Brand loyalty is key, which brings me to the subject of branding.

The Brand

Throughout my childhood, Mama reminded me and my siblings not to boast. I try not to blow my own trumpet excessively and prefer others to do it for me. Funny enough, this applies to companies as well.

Organisations cannot rely only on public relations and advertising to boost their brand cred. There are sneakier methods to increase brand awareness. Carefully embedding sustainability values into the mission statement is one way to develop’CSR programs, collaborate with socially responsible advocates and Aphropean Partners to consult on sustainability marketing campaigns.

Take care of the planet and people for profits

The private sector is in a prime position to make a real impact in the way we live our lives today and in the future. Social entrepreneurs tend to tie sustainability to the mission and value proposition. Larger organisations will more or less be forced to view sustainability in the same light as quality. The recent international standards demand a sustainable approach to its value chain for profits in the long run.

Who says it is easy to create a path of profitable sustainability? Or sustainable profits? The aim to sustain a competitive advantage in the long run while taking care of the people and planet.

Rita Isiba, Aphropean Partner

Rita Isiba, Aphropean Partner

Rita Isiba, Aphropean PartnersI am Rita Isiba, founder of Aphropean Partners,  a marketing professional specialising in sustainability, an advocate of corporate social responsibility and best known as the brainchild of #FOD17 Frontiers of Dialogue, an event series to bridge Africa’s emerging markets with DACH region based SMEs.

Through my professional life, I have supported organisations from different sectors across Africa and Europe. I have crafted a broad base of expertise that helps organisations formulate sustainability into business strategy and performance evaluation.

I combine my deep interest in global business, emerging technology and current international affairs to monitor market trends in consideration of social, economic and environmental dimensions. This certainly helps to manage and promote sustainability-driven projects that meet the bottom line.

In 2016, I ventured out to establish Aphropean Partners based on the realisation of Europe’s increasing appetite to expand beyond continental borders. I cater particularly for the German-speaking region of interest to trade sustainability solutions suitable for Kenya, Nigeria and Uganda.

In response to the rising demands of enterprises in Europe seeking to grab a share of Africa’s emerging markets, I engage with stakeholders by:

  • Conducting market analysis on and off site;
  • Promoting sustainable products and services;
  • Providing business development activities.

Through various marketing channels, I share #AphropeanViews (news) on the developments in business, technology and current affairs.

And I curate events.

You may have heard or attended #FOD17 Frontiers of Dialogue, an event series featuring distinguished panellists, who provide market insights, technical know-how and research evidence with focus on profitable sustainability initiatives.

I am certified in Knowledge Management, Peacebuilding & Conflict Resolution, Equality & Diversity. Also, I hold a combined Bachelor of Science Degree in Business and European Studies from the University of Hertfordshire, Postgraduate Certificate in Business Administration and Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from Edinburgh Business School, UK.

In my personal time, I volunteer my expertise as a consultant in strategic planning and operations management to NIDO Europe, a non-governmental organisation in pursuit of Nigeria’s national development. Also, I am a member of the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber

I consider myself as an amateur anthropologist and love to travel and explore cultures and food.

LinkedIn Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ritaisiba/


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