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Announcing: The Future of Business

Future of Business

The Future of Business programme launches in Ghana

Accra, Ghana/ Oslo, Norway: Business for Peace Foundation today announced the launch of their Future of Business programme, a new global impact-driven event series focused on accelerating development towards the UN Sustainable Development Goals through investments and entrepreneurship in the Global South. In collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme and International Chamber of Commerce the launch of the programme coincides with the announcement of the For Better Business Together (4BBT) programme – an effort to promote local initiatives throughout Ghana to strengthen green and sustainable economic development within the business sector.


The Future of Business programme offers a new way for Sustainable Development Goal (SDG)-aligned investors to connect with  established businesses and entrepreneurs across the Global South. The programme begins as an event series in Ghana, Rwanda, Uganda, Kenya, and Nigeria during 2021.


The Future of Business calls for a mindset change amongst business leaders, investors, employees, and NGOs to re-evaluate how resources can be not only used but shared differently. From governments to companies alike, SDG-enabling investments will enable businesses to help solve global challenges.


The President of Ghana, H.E. Nana Akufo-Addo, was present to deliver the keynote address at the launch alongside other Ghanaian dignitaries. The Prime Minister of Norway, Erna Solberg, also addressed the audience digitally in support of the programme.


“As we continue our efforts to translate the ambitions of the SDG agenda into action, the Future of Business programme paves the way for businesses to contribute to scaling these efforts. We firmly believe that programmes such as the Future of Business can unlock solutions to global challenges by leveraging the power of entrepreneurship and collaboration,” Prime Minister Solberg commented.


Per L. Saxegaard, Founder and Executive Chairman at Business for Peace Foundation, says: “The SDG’s provide both a societal road map and a business plan for achieving a fairer, more equitable, and a sustainable world for all. The global business community has experienced first-hand the mutual interdependence with societies in which they operate. The ongoing pandemic has shown, more than ever, the need for increased collaboration and a broader mindset. The Future of Business programme seeks to connect investor and SDG-entrepreneurs with investment opportunities that creates both societal and business value.”


The Future of Business programme is made possible through generous support from the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad) and United Nations Development Programme’s SDG Impact.


For more information on the Future of Business programme, visit


James Mwangi

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A 2020 Honouree leading one of the most inclusive banks in the world with inclusion at its core.



James Mwangi talking to crowd of people


Dr. James Mwangi is one of Africa’s most renowned entrepreneurs. He is credited with democratizing financial access by giving the unbanked population opportunities for broader economic participation. He has led Equity to become an integrated financial services group operating in 6 African countries with a client base of over 14 million. Mwangi’s ability to merge economic theory to the practical realities of village life enabled him to revolutionise the banking industry in Africa. Today, Equity is one of the most inclusive banks in the world with clients across the socio-economic spectrum including youth and women.


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“I dedicate this Award to our staff and to the millions of our customers who have continuously inspired us by trusting and believing in our common purpose and dream, that together we can solve our problems by seeking innovative solutions anchored on shared value and prosperity,” said Mwangi. “I share this award with our micro, small and medium entrepreneurs who wake up every day to create wealth and opportunities for our society. This Award is a great inspiration to all Africans to believe in their dreams and to pursue them with dedication and conviction that together, we can change our continent within our lifetime.”


James Mwangi receives the Award for his businessworthy values in championing financial inclusion for all. The Committee sees him as a shining example of how business leaders can accelerate change and help solve the world’s problems.



James Mwangi talking to a large crowd of schoolchildren

Marc Benioff

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A 2020 Honouree leading a successful global company while advocating for equality and stakeholder capitalism. 


Marc Benioff giving a speech



Marc Benioff is Chair, CEO and Founder of Salesforce and a pioneer of cloud computing. He is a member of the World Economic Forum (“WEF”) Board of Trustees, Benioff serves as the inaugural Chair of WEF’s Forum Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution in San Francisco.

Salesforce founded the 1-1-1 or “Pledge 1%” model of corporate philanthropy, which dedicates 1% of Salesforce’s equity, employee time or product back into the communities it serves. This pledge has so far generated more than $280 million, millions of employee volunteer hours, and technology to nonprofits and schools worldwide.


World Economic Forum Sikarin Fon Thanachaiary

Photo: World Economic Forum Sikarin Fon Thanachaiary

 “It is a great honor to be recognised by the Business for Peace Foundation, which recognises that businesses have profound responsibilities to all our stakeholders, including our communities and our planet,” said Marc Benioff, Chair & CEO, Salesforce. “As more companies embrace stakeholder capitalism and commit to meeting the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals, we see that business is the greatest platform for change.”


Mr Benioff receives the Award for being an outspoken advocate of businessworthy values and leading Salesforce with social responsibility and equality at its core. Mr Benioff is passionate about redefining capitalism to work for all, and ensuring businesses have a positive impact on the societies in which they operate.




Felicitas ‘Joji’ Bautista Pantoja

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A 2020 Honouree providing sustainable livelihoods for indigenous and migrant peoples and building peace in conflict zones. 

Mrs. Pantoja in field with farmers

Mrs. Pantoja working with local farmers



“This recognition affirms that inclusive development can be a reality through social enterprise.” – Felicitas Pantoja. 


Mrs. Pantoja has dedicated her career to building peace in conflict zones and improving the lives of marginalised groups through economic stability. Based in the Philippines, Coffee for Peace uses coffee production as a tool to address the economic, environmental and peace issues prevalent in conflict-affected communities. Established in 2008, her peace-building missions started around the ritual of gathering over a cup of coffee. “I noticed that they served us coffee,” says Pantoja. “When there’s coffee served, they sit down, they talk more and there’s less fighting – and there’s less death. So coffee can now serve as a vehicle for peace.”


Today, Coffee for Peace provides sustainable livelihoods for Indigenous and migrant groups in rural areas, and has enabled over 880 farmers to escape poverty and build their coffee production capacity. Over 80% of the farmers in the community are women. The company’s focus is on sustainable agriculture, peace and reconciliation between religious groups, environmental protection and entrepreneurship. Coffee for Peace works closely with Business Call to Action, a program of the UNDP.

Mrs Pantoja has said of receiving the Award that “this recognition affirms that inclusive development can be a reality though social enterprise.”


Inspecting coffee beans

Coffee for Peace has trained over 880 farmers



Mrs Pantoja receives the Award for her businessworthy efforts in bringing peace and prosperity to conflict-affected communities in the Philippines. She and her team have built an inspiring social enterprise that empowers marginalised groups from different backgrounds, bringing these groups together while contributing to the sustainable development of the land. Mrs Pantoja demonstrates the significant impact that business can have when used as a vehicle for peace.


“Businesses are the most powerful and influential players. Businesses ought to be mindful of the responsibility to bring economic-ecological justice and harmony among human societies.”  – Felicitas ‘Joji’ Bautista Pantoja



Smiling with Coffee for Peace

Remembering Honouree Latifur Rahman



It is with great sorrow that we share the news of Latifur Rahman’s passing. Honouree Rahman won the Oslo Business for Peace Award in 2012.

The late Mr Rahman was the Chairman and CEO of the Transcom Group. The group’s growth took place under adherence to ethical and responsible business practices that serve as a guideline for other businesses in the region.  Mr Rahman was renowned for his leadership as well as his guidance and integrity, ethical standards and business acumen – well illustrated by Mr Rahman’s reelection as chairman of the Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry for a total of seven terms.

The scope of his work and his impact both in Bangladesh and world-wide were only matched by his unwavering commitment to ethical business practices. Mr Rahman exemplified the core of being businessworthy and was a true inspiration to business leaders worldwide.


For more on the achievements and life of Latifur Rahman, see:

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