Accelerating South Africa's economic transformation: Jeff Immelt, Chairman & CEO, GE

Jeff Immelt, Chairman & CEO, GE

Most people do not realize that the General Electric Company first came to South Africa in 1898—it was among our first offices overseas.

For a brief period, and as part of the global effort to end apartheid, we left the country.

Today, GE has a very strong team in South Africa—we have built lasting partnerships with the government, the private sector, and universities to help build local skills and technical and managerial capabilities and support economic growth.

I am happy to say that we expect to be part of the country’s growth and development for a long time to come.

It is without a doubt one of the most exciting places in the world for GE, with its abundant resources, vibrant culture, and most of all, a talented, entrepreneurial population.

All of this was vividly on display as South Africa hosted the 2010 World Cup. The images and atmosphere reverberated well beyond South Africa (especially the vuvuzelas!) and helped to bring about a shift in the image of Africa globally.

Today, Africa is viewed as a region with an exciting future and is becoming a key destination for investment.

Read more: Accelerating South Africa's economic transformation | McKinsey & Company