The Ecobank Group has announced a partnership with AMA Academy, which is the only free-to-use pan-African online learning platform dedicated to upskilling journalists in Africa.
Ecobank Group and AMA Academy will work together to develop customised fintech training modules for business, finance, and tech journalists across the continent. Modules will be available in two languages: English and French.
The five-module curriculum will be taught online by industry experts and will culminate in recognition and other awards for Africa’s top fintech journalists. It will cover topics including the history of financial services in Africa, its transformation, blockchain, AI in fintech and Open Banking.
It will also cover security, regulation, governance, inclusion, and future trends of the fintech market in Africa.
The partnership aims to provide a deeper knowledge and understanding around the fastest-growing industry on the continent and to improve the quality of reporting and have more effective public awareness.
Eloïne Barry, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of African Media Agency and AMA Academy, said: “We are delighted to partner with Ecobank Group, which is at the forefront of fintech transformation and progression in Africa. Our Academy is equally committed to enhancing the skills of journalists by creating access to experts and training. Journalists are often faced with several beats to cover, and our aim is to help support the quality and effectiveness of their reporting.”
Africa is responsible for an astonishing 45.6% of mobile money activity in the world – a phenomenon made possible by the rapid growth in access to the internet and smart phone devices, and further accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
According to tech industry researchers, in 2021 fintech companies received 60% of the over $4 billion investments in the tech industry, surpassing total investments made into the broader tech start-up ecosystem in previous years. An estimated 6 million young Africans gain access to the internet every year, delivering ripe growth prospects in budding fintech sectors like agriculture, insurance, healthcare, clean energy and education; in addition to relatively unexplored areas such as crowdfunding, blockchain technology, artificial intelligence and augmented reality.
“In the midst of all the positivity around growth in the African fintech industry, there is a deficiency and imbalance in how this story is told and understood. The narrative today is driven from international media sources. We lack a strong homegrown narrative with in-depth analysis of what is really taking place in Africa, by Africans. This course will give journalists the confidence, skills and understanding required to become as relevant and competitive as journalists operating within the same space globally,” Eloïne Barry added.
Djiba Diallo, Senior Fintech Advisor at Ecobank Group, commented on the partnership saying: “The continent has seen the rise of ‘challenger markets’ outside of the traditional strongholds of Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa to include Ethiopia, Ghana, Rwanda, Senegal, and Uganda, just to mention a few. These are countries in which Ecobank is present and where the fintech media training course will have real impact. As a pan-African banking Group, we are committed to growing local fintech solutions, many of which have the potential to become global solutions, and to empowering our local media partners.”
Fintech Journalist of the Year Award
Journalists who attend the full training modules will also stand the chance of being awarded the top Anglophone and Francophone fintech journalist at an awards ceremony following the training.