Stevie B speaks to Rakesh Wahi the co –founder of group ABN 360 on CNBC Africa and Forbes Africa
Rakesh Wahi is Co-founder and Vice Chairman of CNBC Africa and has been the driving force in the conceptualizing, planning and setting up of the channel. He was the Project Director with responsibility for the business planning, licensing, financing and implementation of the venture.
Stevie: What was the thinking of bringing CNBC and Forbes to Africa?
Rakesh: Our journey in Africa started in 2004 when I visited we had already set up CNBC in Namibia in 2002 and in 2004 we established CNBC in Pakistan that is when I first came here to see whether there is an opportunity. And I guess looking at the African story at that point and the history of the continent, the only thing we were hearing was about doom and gloom, corruption but nobody was talking about the positive stories across the continent so we felt the opportunity of setting up a business news television station here.
Stevie: Does the CNBC Africa here in Johannesburg do broadcast to the rest of Africa the same show?
Rakesh: That’s correct. Our headquarters here in Johannesburg established a bureau in Cape Town in June of 2007. In 2008m unfortunately as you all know media companies were affected by recession and we held back on our expansion plan. Last year we went out to set up in Zambia, Namibia, we recently established our services in Mozambique and set up a bureau in Garban. Over the next 2 years we hope to be in about 20 countries in Africa.
Stevie: How do you keep your costs down?
Rakesh: Like in any television business but the only difference between the regular television channel and the business television channel is we got to fix our picks. The cost is the cost of content so you end up making best on how much content you buy and in business news fortunately we create our own content.
CNBC is on Dstv channel 410.