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Saïd MBAs On Trip To Nairobi 13-19th April 2014

By Saïd Business School, University Of Oxford
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A group of MBA students from Saïd Business School will be going on a trip to Nairobi, Kenya. With participants from the USA, UK, India, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Brazil, Germany, Bulgaria and Switzerland - the Trek is an opportunity for students to increase their understanding of business developments and issues in Kenya, and to network with Oxford alumni and corporate contacts in the region.

The 22 students have a strong interest in the social enterprises based in Nairobi and have set up a series of company visits to engage in dialogue with social entrepreneurs and socially focused organisations. The group hopes these meetings will be beneficial for the organisations as well, with students contributing innovative and strategic ideas as well as engaging in discussions on the pivotal challenges and opportunities that social enterprises are facing today.

One of the organising students Mariah Maguire-Fong said: 'East Africa is one of the most exciting parts of the world at the moment, with rapid growth and technological innovation fueling social change. Many of the MBA students are keen to gain a deeper insight into Kenyan business success and to take advantage of post-MBA career opportunities in the wider region. We are hoping to gain insight into the challenges and opportunities of doing business in Kenya; from meeting with Safaricom to hear about the next steps in mobile banking, to meeting with the Kenyan Chamber of Commerce to learn about the up-and-coming industries in the region.

We are also meeting with some of the most exciting social enterprises in the region, who are tackling social issues like healthcare, education and agricultural productivity through innovative business models. We have been pleased with the positive response we are receiving from organisations in Kenya: clearly there is great interest in meeting with Oxford MBAs to discuss the business environment in Kenya.'

Derek Walker, Head of Careers at Saïd commented: 'It is good to see the strong interest among our students in working in Kenya and the region continues to present opportunities. The students have set up a series of valuable meetings and will also be working closely with our alumni there to maximise their opportunities. The visit is a good way for companies to meet MBA students who are highly motivated to work in the region, are geographically mobile, and who have a diverse range of cultural backgrounds, business specialisms and sector experience - including finance, technology, consulting, media and entrepreneurship, for example. We look forward to successful visit.'

The trek ties into a wider school engagement with Africa which includes the annual Oxford Africa Conference taking place on 23rd-24th May this year. The Oxford Africa Conference is co-presented by the Oxford Business Network for Africa at Saїd Business School and the Oxford Africa Society and brings together leading African figures to discuss 'Africa's Transformation' and the business, political, technological and societal landscapes that are contributing to the continent's economic progression. The Co-Chairs of this event, Samuel Willi and Tyler-Blair Sheppard, are attending the Trek and are available for comment about the conference.