Africa: Rwanda’s Akamanzi Appointed NBA Africa CEO


The National Basketball Association (NBA) on Wednesday, December 27, appointed Rwanda’s Clare Akamanzi as the Chief Executive Officer of NBA Africa.

Akamanzi, a former cabinet member, will assume office on January 23, 2024, and will be reporting to NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum.

In this role, she will oversee the NBA’s business and basketball development efforts in Africa and will be responsible for continuing to grow the popularity of the sport, the NBA and the Basketball Africa League (BAL) across the continent, including through grassroots basketball development, media distribution, corporate partnerships, and social responsibility initiatives that improve the livelihoods of African youth and families.

ALSO READ: Victor Williams to step down as NBA Africa chief

An accomplished business executive and international trade and investment lawyer, Akamanzi has most recently served as the CEO of Rwanda Development Board (RDB) between 2017 and September 2023 where she spearheaded Rwanda’s economic development by enabling private sector growth.

Under her leadership, RDB implemented several business policy reforms and initiatives that led to significant investment and development for the country, including through partnerships with the BAL, Arsenal FC, Paris Saint-Germain FC, FC Bayern Munich and TIME Magazine, among others.

“Clare’s business acumen, international experience and familiarity with basketball and the NBA make her the ideal executive to lead our business in Africa,” said Tatum. “NBA Africa and the Basketball Africa League are well-positioned for continued growth, and under Clare’s leadership we believe these initiatives will transform economies, communities and lives across the continent.”

“I’ve seen firsthand how sports can positively impact businesses, families and communities in Africa, and the NBA and the BAL are a perfect example of that,” said Akamanzi.