MSc International Sport Management graduate, Edem Kojo Spio, was invited to speak at the World Football Summit Africa, which took place between 16th-17th November in Durban. We caught up with him after the event to talk about the summit itself, podcasting, and football in Africa.

Edem, please tell us about your podcast:

I am the co-founder and co-host of the Africa Business of Sport Podcast, the only podcast on the continent focusing on sports business. The Africa Business of Sport Podcast offers dynamic African perspectives on the biggest topics, stories, developments and talking points in the global sports business industry from the leading figures in the African sport business.

The podcast was launched on 17th August 2022, a day before the completion of my master’s. I’ve always loved radio and broadcasting. The late Komla Dumor and UCFB’s own Mark Clemmit are my inspiration for starting my podcast journey. Jabu Mtwa, my co-founder and co- host have an unparalleled passion for the development of sports in Africa. We decided to combine our passion and skills to raise awareness on the potential in Africa. In over three months, we’re in 35+ countries across all continents with 700+ streams/downloads.

I love to share stories and learn from those of others. Conversations enables this in the best way. The more I talk to people, the better I become at asking questions, leading conversations and sharing knowledge. You can access the podcast here.


Tell us about the World Football Summit event

753 in-person attendees. 243 virtual attendees. 65 speakers with 30% being women. 51 countries globally were represented. 16 panel discussions.

The World Football Summit event organized the inaugural summit in Africa from 16th to 17th November 2022 in Durban, KwaZulu Natal to be exact. World Football Summit Africa is the international event for the African football industry, gathering the most influential professionals in order to discuss the most relevant topics and generate business opportunities. During 2 days, Durban becomes the capital of this thriving industry.

What did it feel like to be asked to speak at World Football Summit Africa?

I started following World Football Summit in October 2021 when I started my master’s study. I was in awe of all their events and followed their posts closely. WFS Betis and WFS Seville embodied everything I had learnt during my studies from marketing to sustainable event management.

After WFS Seville, I told myself that I will be at WFS Africa. I thought I was dreaming when I was asked to moderate a panel discussion at World Football Summit Africa. The extra great feeling was that I had suggested the topic for the discussion early on when Jabu and I held meeting with Kabir Nagpal. Prior to that, Jan Alessie, co-founder and director of World Football Summit invited me to come for WFS Africa after I had sent him a link to a LinkedIn post I had made about a new podcast episode.

Jabu and I were told that the fantastic work we were doing with the podcast opened the opportunity for us to attend WFS Africa.

What are your thoughts on African football in 2022? 

African football is finally receiving the much-needed traction it has been lacking for ages. With Senegal winning the AFCON early on in the year and with some of the world’s top professionals coming from Africa, there’s genuine hope ahead. Nonetheless, there is much room for improvement.

Morocco, Senegal, Cameroon, Tunisia and Ghana are leading the way and placing the continent on high. My pick to go all the way is the Lions of Teranga. Their discipline, humility and ability to play as a closed unit is truly fascinating.

Both Salah and Mane do deserve to win the Balon d’Or given their exceptional performances for Liverpool and their countries for the last 5 years. As a Liverpool fan, Salah is my hero and I would love for him to win it and have his statue placed beside the Pyramids. Mane is a proper role model and it’s a real shame that he isn’t present for Senegal at the World Cup.

What advice would you give to anyone who wants to pursue a career in sports media?

The sports media space is massive. My top sports are football, tennis, F1, basketball and swimming. Given the fact that there are many more sports out there, one will just need to be passionate, determined and humbly enough to become equipped with the right knowledge for the industry as well as be innovative in pursuing opportunities.

The sports media industry is one that promote entrepreneurship. If you’re fascinated about content creation like me, go for it! A relentlessly tenacious mindset will serve you well.

How have you used skills learned from your MSc International Sport Management studies in your current work?

I’m passionate about developing projects. Shana, Peter, Daniel, Jarno, Jane and some others at UCFB/GIS can attest to this. I enjoyed taking courses in leadership, marketing, sustainable event management and strategy development.

My podcast enables me to combine all the lessons learnt and skills I further developed during my degree. I love the fact that I put everything into practice a day before the completion of my degree. I intend on creating new projects and business areas through the podcast as have I applied to be an IOC Young Leader 2023 2026 an opportunity to create a sport-based social project.