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The annual African Ambassadors Dinner will be hosted on Thursday 15 December at the Rabobank headquarters in Utrecht. The Dinner provides the ideal networking platform for both African Ambassadors and representatives of the Dutch private sector to explore new connections and enhance existing business relations.

The program will consist of a lengthy Ambassador matchmaking session and speeches by guest speakers such as Jurriaan Ruys and Mette Gonggrijp. Participants will also cast their votes on this year's winner of the Doing Business in Africa Award after which they will enjoy a marvellous dinner and fancy cocktails with the Ambassadors.

In 2015 the following Embassies were represented at the dinner:











15:10 Coert Beerman, Rabobank   Welcome


Opening Remarks by Mette Gonggrijp, Director of Sub-Saharan Africa, Ministry of Foreign Affairs.      







Plenary session




Irene Visser NABC & Peter Niekus Rabobank



17:30 Maarten van Herpen,  Philips   Innovative Health Solutions in Africa


Ksenija Vojevoda, Country Risk Analyst, Rabobank


Navigating your way through Africa


Jurriaan Ruys, LandLife Company


New technology for the reforestation of Africa’s dry lands

18:10 Mamadou Touré, Ubuntu Capital   Insights in doing business in Africa: Present and Future


Doing Business in Africa Award Ceremony


Vote for your winner!






21:15 Drinks & Cocktails   Cocktails by Chivas






Mamadou K. Touré

Mamadou is Chairman and CEO of Ubuntu Capital, a leading Investment and Advisory firm
focused on designing and implementing integrated innovative investment solutions uplifting
projects ecosystems.

He was previously Managing Director with GE Africa. Before joining GE,he worked at IFC (International Finance Corporation, World Bank Group) in the Infrastructure Department mostly in charge of private sector investments in the Telecommunications, Media and Technologies sector covering Sub-Saharan Africa.

Jurriaan Ruys

Jurriaan Ruys is co-founder and CEO of Land Life, a company that provides biodegradable products for planting trees in deserts. Previously, Jurriaan was partner at McKinsey & Company and COO at Eneco, a sustainable energy company.

Mette Gonggrijp

Mette is the Director of the Sub-Saharan Africa Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. She was formerly Ambassador for the Netherlands in San Jose, Costa Rica and was employed at the embassy in Harare, Zimbabwe.

Coert Beerman

Coert is the Director Wholesale for the Netherlands and Africa and has worked at Rabobank since 1983.

Ksenija Vojevoda 

Ksenija works as a country risk manager at RaboResearch Global Economics. She is primarily involved in country risk policy development and implementation. 

Practical information

Date: Thursday 15 December

Time: 14:00-19:00

Location: Rabobank Nederland

Address: Croeselaan 18, 3521 CB Utrecht

Train: The Rabobank HQ is within walking distance of Utrecht Centraal

Parking at location (Limited Space): After the new building, follow the signs ‘Parkeren bezoekers’ (visitors’ parking). You will need to drive around the building to the car park entrance at the back. Please report at the reception, where you will be given directions to the venue.

(Paid) Parking Adress: If the main parking is full you can try, in order of distance from the venue: Moreelsepark, Spoorstraat 22 or Jaarbeurs Parking.

Language: English

Dress code: Formal



Every year NABC honours a member for his/her excellent activities in Africa by resenting out the "Doing Business in Africa" Award ceremony which brings Dutch companies or individuals that are transforming the African economy into the spotlight. The winner or winning company will be featured in the upcoming NABC Magazine.

Voting in the online poll is now closed. Our finalists are Form International, Closing the Loop and BIG Machinery. During the Award Ceremony at the Ambassadors Dinner, each of them will give a short presentation and the audience will then vote for the winner. Below you can find more information about the final three candidates.

 manages more than 40,000 hectares of forest assets in Ghana and Tanzania. Being the first company to obtain FSC certification, Form is a pioneer and forerunner in the sustainable management of African forests. They have over 2,200 people working in Africa on the reforestation of degraded forest areas and have planted over 10 million trees in Africa. Form has invested €40 million already and they have committed ourselves at COP21 to invest $150 million by 2030. As a follow-up of COP21, Form organized ‘Forests for the Future - New Forests for Africa’, an international conference with all major international players in attendance. Sustainability is at the core of their business practices – it is their main product! They’ve set themselves apart by being actively involved in combatting climate change by planting trees in a social and sustainable way. You can view their 3 minute inspirational video 'Forests for the Future' by clicking here.


 is active in many countries throughout Africa including Guinea, Mali, Burundi, Zambia and South Africa. They initiate many projects for road construction and dredging. They always go the extra mile by creating local content and investing in local people alongside our business activities. They make sure to take the whole chain – from governments to operators – into consideration and constantly think outside the box to ensure that they create win-win situations. BIG has put in a huge amount of time and energy into doing business across Africa, and they have said that winning this award would be a fantastic reward for everyone at BIG for all the hard work.


Closing the Loop turns the huge problem of mobile phone waste into opportunities for recycling. Hundreds of millions of ‘waste phones’ end up in landfills or in illegal hands in Africa, leading to environmental pollution, loss of valuable raw materials and health issues. Closing the Loop enables local entrepreneurs to take an active role in the responsible recycling of mobile telephones. Working in more than 10 African countries, they purchase end-of-life mobile phones, and ship them to Europe for proper recycling. Of course the ambition is to one day have safe and responsible recycling locally in Africa, but until then, they do the next best thing. They generate income, create jobs, reduce waste and encourage awareness about recycling issues. To date, they have collected more than a million telephones and ensure that the valuable materials inside these scrap phones end up back into the economy, instead of in a landfill.

Event details

Annual Ambassadors Dinner 2016
From December 15, 2016
Till December 15, 2016
NABC events
Annual Event
Utrecht, Netherlands
+31(0)70 304 3618