A number of high-profile speakers will be on hand to help businesses pursue opportunities in South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa. Topics will include market entry strategies, risk mitigation, emerging market opportunities and separating fact from fiction.

Subject matter experts on the region pack the agenda of the World Trade Conference, scheduled April 21-22 at the Grand Hotel Marriott Resort, Golf Club & Spa in Point Clear. The conference is coordinated by the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce and presented by the Gulf Coast Trade Alliance, a four-state alliance between government and nonprofit business organizations from Alabama, Northwest Florida, Louisiana and Mississippi.

Featured keynote speaker Mninwa J. Mahlangu, ambassador of South Africa to the U.S., will discuss the political climate and consumer growth. Mahlangu has served in a variety of roles leading up to the first democratic South African government and has since represented the country in many international platforms, including the United Nations and G20 Speakers Conferences.

Additional African expert speakers include:

* Chamberlain Eke, senior commercial specialist with the U.S. Commercial Service in Nigeria;
* Patrick Griswold, president and founder of Why Africa Now!, a boutique consulting firm in Kenya and Tanzania;
* David Newton, economic and commercial officer with the U.S. Embassy in Lomé, Togo;
* Brent Omdahl, deputy senior commercial officer with the U.S. Commercial Service in Johannesburg.

These speakers and others from Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida will be on the two-day agenda. Conference registration is open until Thursday, April 16 at www.mobilechamber.com/internationaltrade or www.worldtradeconference.com.

Africa is home to seven of the world’s fastest growing economies and its middle class growth makes it “time to establish a foothold” through exports and investing, according to a U.S. Census Bureau report.

In addition, conference participants can schedule one-on-one appointments with commercial specialists to address specific issues and determine strategies on how to profit from this emerging market. Due to high demand, appointments will be made on a first come, first serve basis.

To schedule your appointment with Omdahl, Eke and/or Newton, contact Stimpson at cstimpson@mobilechamber.com or call 251-431-8648.

Conference Fast Facts

Who: Gulf Coast Trade Alliance
When: April 21-22
Where: Grand Hotel Marriott Resort, Golf Club & Spa, Point Clear
Cost: $225
Why: South Africa & Sub-Saharan Africa are ripe with opportunity. The conference will offer perspectives on entering the African market, interactive panel sessions, and one-on-one counseling sessions.
Registration Deadline: Thursday, April 16
Register: www.mobilechamber.com/internationaltrade or call Christina Stimpson at 251-431-8648.