Image credit: Alexandr Sasin. Three of #You in St Petersburg!

Pause: Some want it, some wish it, and some make it happen

__A shout-out to #TeamKwesé and #You!

We have now reached the Final Four of World Cup 2018. This is the “business end of the tournament” and there are so many entrepreneurial lessons to be learned. Anyone left can win, and anyone can lose! They just have to raise their game!

Traditionally, this is when I actually take time to watch full games on TV. My life is so jam-packed that even when I get to watch on TV, it is usually a recorded game. Now this year because of business commitments, I am not going to Moscow for the final, even though I was kindly invited. Instead I have asked some of our hard working staff to go and enjoy on my behalf.

I have a major board meeting the following day in London, so I will watch on TV with a few friends. I actually want to watch it at our studios with the @TeamKwesé Sports Team who have managed to broadcast every single game on multiple platforms to 38x African countries!

# Give them a shout-out, because these guys have worked flat out for several months now. So proud of them and the whole @TeamKwesé!

My engineering professor used to say to us: “When a job is well done, it looks simple.”

Every game now must be played as a final. And so it is if you are trying to run a business…

__Only those who know how to play the game will be able to tell you what it actually takes!

One day I hope that you will understand entrepreneurship so deeply that you will learn to bow when you see a good play, just like you would a good soccer game.

Just getting Kwesé iflix up and running was one of the hardest things I have ever had to oversee in 32 years of business!

How simple does it look? Download and watch (for free) I’m not getting anything because if you pay for data it goes to your provider.

How simple does it look? If it does, then we did a good job.



by 8 Replies

About Strive Masiyiwa

Strive Masiyiwa is the Founder and Executive Chairman of Econet, a diversified global telecommunications group with operations and investments in over 15 countries. His business interests also include renewable energy, financial services, media and hospitality. Masiyiwa serves on a number of international boards, including Unilever, Rockefeller Foundation, the Council on Foreign Relations’ Global Advisory Board, the Africa Progress Panel, the UN Secretary General's Advisory Board for Sustainable Energy, Morehouse College, Hilton Foundation's Humanitarian Prize Jury and the Kenjin-Tatsujin International Advisory Council. He is one of the founders, with Sir Richard Branson, of the global think tank, the Carbon War Room, and a founding member of the Global Business Coalition on Education. Masiyiwa took over the Chairmanship of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) from Kofi Annan. He is also Chair of the Micronutrient Initiative, a global organization focused on ending child hunger and improving nutrition. In 2012, Masiyiwa was invited by President Obama to address leaders at the Camp David G-8 Summit on how to increase food production and end hunger in parts of Africa. In 2014, Masiyiwa was selected to Fortune Magazine’s list of the “World’s 50 Greatest Leaders”. As a philanthropist, he is a member of the Giving Pledge, and his contributions to education, health and development have been widely recognized. Masiyiwa and his wife finance the Higher Life Foundation, which provides scholarships to over 42,000 African orphans. In 2015, he was the recipient of the International Rescue Committee’s Freedom Award and was presented with a UN Foundation Global Leadership Award for the work of the Africa Against Ebola Solidarity Trust, which he chairs and helped establish to fund the deployment of African healthcare workers to combat the outbreak in West Africa.

8 thoughts on “Pause: Some want it, some wish it, and some make it happen

  1. Strive Masiyiwa Post author

    Afterthought 1.

    “Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, others make it happen…” said the basketball legend Michael Jordan. A job well done looks simple, if you have the right #People and you let them do their job.

  2. Strive Masiyiwa Post author

    Afterthought 2.
    I know how much you have to raise your game, and sometimes I get tears in my eyes at just the thought of it. We need to get out there and play, and it is not easy.

  3. Strive Masiyiwa Post author

    Afterthought 3.
    I had tickets from FIFA to attend the finals as a VIP (after all we’re broadcasting the games to the largest Pan African audience ever). As an avid sports fan I could have lived in Russia for a month. I could not go because my BUSINESS was to ensure that the games were broadcast seamlessly to over 100m people across 38x countries, through 62 public and private broadcasters. After the games maybe we take a little break… but then again, it’s really time to move on to the next issue. @TeamKwesé you did good! Thank you!

  4. Strive Masiyiwa Post author

    I have said it often before, and I will say it again:
    Curiosity is the lifeblood of successful entrepreneurship!

    My mother bought a TV, when TVs were new. I must have been about 10 years old!
    As soon as she got out of the house, I carefully opened the back with a screw driver. Of course I failed to put it all back!
    She did not beat me to death, even though she was upset. She instead tried to find ways to feed my curiosity.
    Never attack the curiosity of a child because you are destroying the future problem solvers!

    As an entrepreneur I always want to know how something works, from an entrepreneurial perspective, and not just as a consumer:

    # How did they put this together?
    # How does it really work?
    # How do they make money?
    # How would I make money with this?
    # Can I improve what they have done?

    We are all consumers of something, but even as we sit to enjoy or even complain about something we have bought, let’s not forget to be entrepreneurs at the same time!

  5. Strive Masiyiwa Post author

    David Odili writes,

    Most organizations around the world would soar if their Managers would learn to provide direction, “get out of the way” and allow their teams do their job. Thank you for being a great Manager/Leader, you inspire us all around Africa!

    I wonder why Econet left Nigeria though?

    My reply,
    In answer to the last part of your question:
    “I wonder why Econet left Nigeria?”
    Even if I told you, and certainly I have spoken about it before, the truth is #NothingTurnsOnIt!
    Yes, we sold our interest in the business now called Airtel Nigeria. We invested our money in new business interests including in Nigeria.
    We have a strong and eve- growing business presence in Nigeria. We believe in the country, and will continue to look for opportunities there that are in line with our expertise and ethical values, of which there are many.
    Remember my posts in which I said “Buying and selling businesses is part of business, too!”?
    We are even working in partnership with Bharti Airtel Group now in many African markets, including Nigeria where they are promoting Kwesé iflix, together with MTN… “In as much as it depends on you, be at peace with all men.”

  6. Strive Masiyiwa Post author

    Adon writes,

    Good day sir,please i have a good ‘shared economy’ business idea,i have sent you the details of the idea in your email this morning
    God bless you for what you are doing for Africa Amen

    My reply,
    As I have said often on this platform, I’m not looking for “ideas” of new businesses. I have thousands of people who work for us, whose job it is to come up with ideas. I also get a lot myself.
    Secondly I need you to understand that no serious investor invests in “ideas”, they invest in ideas that have been turned into businesses already.
    So when you have a great idea, start turning it into a business.
    In our organization if someone sends us business ideas by email or documents, our lawyers take them, and place a “seal” on them so no one can open or read them. If possible they are sent back to the sender unopened.

    #Please, please don’t send me your ideas. I’m not in a position to read them or give you personalized advice. If I stopped to consider personal requests for advice then I cannot do anything else, because they would come in by the thousands every day!

    Be content to work with the advice I give everyone else.

    The reason is simple:
    If by coincidence we are already working on something similar, or if someone in our system introduces it as their own idea, then you might take us to court.
    Most big companies will not entertain outsiders who walk in with their ideas, because it has serious legal ramifications.
    This is to prevent charges of “stealing of ideas”.

    So, please don’t send me ideas, just go out and turn them into businesses, using the principles that I teach you. Which include not sending stuff to people on emails.
    I’m sorry to disappoint you, but that is how things work.
    Now go start your business.

  7. Strive Masiyiwa Post author

    Kelly Chagira writes,
    Question about Web based businesses.

    My reply,
    KweséESPN is our first web based business as a group. It is now Africa’s biggest sports website.
    I must admit I was surprised how ignorant I was about how such businesses really make money!
    In particular I did not know how one actually gets the adverts that appear on the screen!
    I also underestimated the number of people and expertise to make it work.

    Now I’m willing to admit ignorance now and again, because if you don’t then you will not learn anything in life!

    As some of you will remember it was originally called KweseSport.Com. We then merged it with ESPN to create Kwesé

    This is a beautiful little business:
    “Nice little earner!” I!
    [this means it makes good money…shhh!]

  8. Strive Masiyiwa Post author

    These guys are not TenderPreneurs!

    CNN Today [9/7/18]
    Move over, Warren Buffett: Mark Zuckerberg is now the third-richest person in the world.
    The Facebook CEO jumped ahead on Friday with a net worth of $81.6 billion, according to calculations by Bloomberg. That put him about $373 million in front of Buffett, the legendary investor and Berkshire Hathaway (BRKA) CEO.
    Zuckerberg claimed the No. 3 spot on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index because Facebook (FB) shares rose 2.4%. The stock has spiked about 15% this year.
    For the first time, the three richest people alive are all tech titans. Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, worth about $141 billion, is first, followed by Microsoft (MSFT) founder Bill Gates, according to the Bloomberg index.


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