In an entrepreneurship forum I recently attended, one participant was quite vocal about the need for entrepreneurs to provide African goods and services. This brings up the question I always ask myself whenever I come across concepts such as “Kenyan film” or “Kenyan story” or “buy Kenyan”.
Are Kenyan or African goods and services those created and sold by Kenyans/Africans or are they only those that are uniquely Kenyan or African? Is an African entrepreneur who deals with smartphones made in China, providing African goods and services? Does the foreign nature of the goods/services he provides disqualify him from being categorized as an African entrepreneur? What about an African agri-entrepreneur who deals with genetically modified seeds? What about an African pharmacist who largely sells products created outside of Africa?
What about the European, American and Arab slave traders who were dealing with African “goods”? Were they African entrepreneurs?
African slaves were exchanged for foreign goods:
What about rock ‘n’ roll, whose roots can be traced to the slave trade mentioned above? Is rock ‘n’ roll an African product? Is rock ‘n’ roll made by an African still “mzungu” music?
(Written by Mildred Achoch.)
Coda: "Jean-Baptiste Say pointed out in his own writings that it was entrepreneurs who sought out inefficient uses of resources and capital and moved them into more productive, higher yield areas. Simply put, entrepreneurs seek opportunities for profit and, by doing so, create new markets and fresh opportunities. By constantly disrupting the balance of competition, entrepreneurs prevent monopolies from forming and create a wide diversity of products that keep consumers consuming and producers producing."Source: Who Coined the Term 'Entrepreneur'? by Andrew Beattie.