M-Pesa’s reminder: Share inspirational ideas, change the world

In early 2015, Biznews was barely out of its proverbial nappies when then Barclays Africa executives Stephen van Coller and Eugene Booysen commissioned us to cover Singularity University’s first ever conference in South Africa. It was a vote of confidence I’ll never forget. Even more valuable was how the content transformed my worldview.

Singularity’s co-founders Peter Diamandis and Salim Ismail brought along the cream of their Silicon Valley institution’s faculty. Between them these gifted minds exposed us to embryonic concepts of abundance and exponentiality, accurately predicting how these disruptive waves would turn old paradigms on their heads.

Not surprisingly, I’ve followed Singularity’s work ever since. And am now eagerly anticipating Diamandis’s new book The Future is Faster Than You Think, which will be released in a fortnight. It’s sure to be on the must-read list for everyone interested in decoding our increasingly complex world.

Diamandis provided a taster in his latest newsletter, explaining how Africa’s revolutionary M-Pesa payment system came from an idea shared by Vodafone’s Nick Hughes at a 2002 conference where a curious official from the UK’s Department of International Development was in the audience. A powerful reminder that when inspiration strikes, never be too shy to share. Because you never knows who is listening.