CNBC Africa recently marked its tenth anniversary with a special broadcast and markets opening from the JSE in South Africa. The special anniversary broadcast was also the launch of CNBC’s first studio in Johannesburg.
The events of the day brought together key stakeholders, supporters, regular analysts, shareholders, senior management and media, to look back on the past decade of bringing the African economic story to a continent-wide and international audience.
Founder of the ABN Group, Rakesh Wahi, made his journey to South Africa in 2004, armed with the vision of a Pan-African business and finance network that would be set up in the economic hub of Africa and so, the vision of CNBC Africa was realised with the inception of the Johannesburg bureau. “Selling the dream was never easy when you had nothing to show and no comparable project to correlate to,’ explains Wahi.
CNBC Africa’s success has not been achieved overnight. The network has survived periods of political and financial turbulence, including the recession of 2008, and has continued to prosper despite the volatile environment of the African continent.
CNBC Africa operates studios in Lagos, Nairobi, Johannesburg and Kigali, making it the only financial network to of its size to broadcast live to a pan-African audience daily.
“Today, when I see a simultaneous conversation between our anchors in East, West and Southern Africa, I realise that the channel has come so far,’ says executive director, Bronwyn Nielsen.
The CNBC Africa channel is known to provide 24-hour coverage of the day’s markets trading, from the open of each stock exchange in East, South and West Africa, to the closing of the day’s activities.
“As CNBC Africa turns 10, we need to understand the direction of the industry. In the past years, the future of TV has been questioned. Television news has changed – consumers are no longer silent viewers, they are informed contributors. Never has it been easier to create expression; social media has made creating, expressing and accessing information so much easier. As a brand we are ready for the challenge, our niche being not just to quantify pan-African content we bring our viewers, but the sheer quality of financial and business news we offer. My faith in the brand we represent, and the people we have, has never been stronger,’ says managing director, Roberta Naicker.
In October last year CNBC Africa renewed its franchise agreement with CNBC International for another 15 years.
‘Our 10th anniversary is but a milestone in greater things to come. We have built meaningful structures of succession and the next phase will see the baton of leadership change to the younger leaders who will be responsible to build the legacy of the Founders until the next milestone – our silver jubilee in 2032,’ concludes Wahi.