POWER-GEN Africa's big plans for 2014 conferences
POWER-GEN Africa and the inaugural DistribuTECH Africa have announced a formidable line-up of top international and local speakers for their 2014 conferences, which are now officially sanctioned as Continual Professional Development (CPD) events by the South African Institute of Electrical Engineers (SAIEE).
The 2014 conferences will run concurrently, alongside the power sector’s premier expo, from March 17-19 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre. They will attract African dignitaries and international energy experts from sub-Saharan Africa, the US, UK, Germany, Italy, Russia and further afield, who will deliver their insights in a programme designed by an Advisory Board of African and international power industry experts.
Global event organisers PennWell report that more than 2,100 attendees from 63 countries and six continents attended the inaugural POWER-GEN Africa 2012, and they expect the 2014 event to attract even larger numbers of high-level decision-makers and address key technology and development issues for the sub-Saharan Africa energy marketplace through a comprehensive educational programme and three-day exhibition.
Nigel Blackaby, Event Director and Director of Conferences at the PennWell International Power Group, UK, said: “PennWell, as the biggest global event organiser in the power sector, is proud to be part of any new frontier or development, promising both business opportunity and the potential to transform lives. The current huge demand for the delivery of vital, secure energy services to the rapidly-expanding economies across the African continent offers one such opportunity.”
The events will include two technical tours – to Eskom’s new Centre for Substation Automation and Energy Management Systems (CSAEMS), Cape Town Peninsula University of Technology; and to Eskom’s Ankerlig Power Station (previously known as the Atlantis OCGT power station), one of five gas turbine power plants in South Africa.
A series of Technical Training Workshops will also give delegates the unique opportunity to receive training in various categories of the generation, transmission and distribution fields.
Blackaby added: “POWER-GEN Africa and DistribuTECH Africa bring together power engineering planning and technology expertise from fuel supply, through power generation, right across the grid and down to the level of the customer’s meter. All the elements that African utility companies are responsible for will be on show here, with the event being designed to be a meeting place to exchange views, discuss experiences and learn new ways to expand and strengthen the power industry across the many countries of Africa.”
In addition to the conference programme, POWER-GEN Africa and DistribuTECH Africa offer a substantial and world-class exhibition floor, playing host to a number of world-class suppliers and service providers, from home and abroad. Those attending POWER-GEN Africa and DistribuTECH Africa will also be able to take part in free training workshops provided by leading suppliers and thereby enhance skill levels, plus the new addition of a WADE Africa Decentralized Energy Workshop. There are also two fascinating technical tours available to those who book in advance.
For the full Preliminary Conference Programme and to download the Pre Show Guide, detailing the conference, exhibitor list, floor plan, hotel and registration information, as well as Technical Tour and Workshop details please visit www.powergenafrica.com or www.distributechafrica.com.
5 minutes with... Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, CEO, Tapoly
Founder and CEO of award-winning insurtech firm Tapoly, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy heads up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, winning industry awards, innovating in the digital insurance space, and leading with inclusivity.
Here, Business Chief talks to Janthana about her leadership style and skills.
What do you do, in a nutshell?
I’m founder and CEO of Tapoly, a digital MGA providing a full stack of commercial lines insurance specifically for SMEs and freelancers, as well as a SaaS solution to connect insurers with their distribution partners. We build bespoke, end-to-end platforms encompassing the whole customer journey, but can also integrate our APIs within existing systems. We were proud to win Insurance Provider of the Year at the British Small Business Awards 2018 and receive silver in the Insurtech category at the Efma & Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards 2019.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I try to be as inclusive a leader as possible. I’m committed to creating space for everyone to shine. Many of the roles at Tapoly are performed by women and I speak at industry events to encourage more people to get involved in insurance/insurtech. Similarly, I always try to maintain a growth mindset. I think it’s important to retain values to support learning and development, like reliability, working hard and punctuality.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
Build your network and seek advice. As a leader, you need smart people around you to help you grow your business. It’s not about personally being the best, but being able to find resources and get help where needed.
How do you see leadership changing in a COVID world?
I think the pandemic has proven the importance of inclusive leadership so that everyone feels supported and valued. It’s also shown the importance of being flexible as a leader. We’ve had to remain adaptable to continue delivering high levels of customer service. This flexibility has also been important when supporting employees as everyone has had individual pressures to deal with during this time. Leaders should continue to embed this flexibility within their organisations moving forward.
They say ‘from every crisis comes opportunity’, what opportunities do you see?
The past year has been challenging, but it has also proven the importance of digital transformation in insurance. When working from home was required, it was much harder for insurers to adjust who had not embedded technology within their operating processes because they did not have data stored in the cloud and it caused communication delays with concerned customers at a time when this communication should have been a priority, which ultimately impacts the level of customer satisfaction. This demonstrates the importance of what we are trying to achieve at Tapoly in driving digitalisation in insurance and making communication between insurers and distribution partners seamless.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
Start sooner, don’t be afraid to take (calculated) risks and make sure you raise enough money to get you through the initial seed stage.