Herbert Mensah, the newly elected President of Rugby Africa, the governing body of rugby in Africa, delivered a keynote speech this week at the Bloomberg New Economy Gateway Africa, Bloomberg’s flagship event in Africa. In his speech, he called for a change of mindset from World Rugby and African governments.
“The talent drain is one of Africa’s most significant sporting challenges,” said Mensah. “We need World Rugby to increase its investment on the continent, and we also require African governments to contribute and invest in rugby so we can create more opportunities for African athletes to remain in Africa instead of seeking contracts with Western rugby teams.”
He added, “The world of rugby perceives Africa as one big impoverished country. This perception must end. We need to change how the world views African rugby by altering our approach, showcasing our value, and demonstrating our potential for growth. African rugby is big business; let’s stop pretending it is not!”
He adds that it is possible to reshape the world’s perception of African rugby, leading to increased international competitions and the substantial revenues they bring.
Ahead of his election as Rugby Africa’s president, Mensah argued that the true potential value of African rugby lies in treating it as the big business it is. He believes that by changing the way in which Rugby Africa operates and showcasing its value and growth potential, it is possible to reshape the world’s perception of African rugby, leading to increased international competitions and the substantial revenues they bring. Mensah’s priority is to foster the progress and growth of rugby not only in Africa but also globally.
Mensah is a successful businessperson, sports entrepreneur, and a prominent figure in Ghanaian and international sports administration. He has been instrumental in the development and growth of rugby in Ghana, and his contributions to the sport’s advancement in the sub-Saharan region have been significant.
At the Bloomberg New Economy Gateway Africa 2023 event, Mensah shared his insights on treating rugby as a lucrative business venture. Leveraging his experience, he highlighted the immense investment prospects within the African sports market and outlined strategies to unlock its true potential.
The Bloomberg New Economy Gateway Africa 2023, Bloomberg’s flagship event in Africa, concluded on Wednesday in Marrakech, Morocco. The event brings together leaders from the private and public sectors to discuss the world’s most pressing issues and explore potential solutions within the context of local and regional priorities. It addresses various challenges facing the global economy, including rising food and energy prices, while also shedding light on potential solutions and opportunities from the African continent and beyond.