In her new role, Akamanzi will oversee the NBA’s business and basketball development efforts in Africa, focusing on growing the sport’s popularity and the impact of the Basketball Africa League (BAL) across the continent. This includes grassroots basketball development, media distribution, corporate partnerships, and social responsibility initiatives benefiting African youth and families.
As the former CEO of Rwanda Development Board (RDB) from 2017 to September 2023, Akamanzi played a pivotal role in spearheading Rwanda’s economic development through private sector growth.
Under her leadership, RDB implemented business policy reforms and initiatives that attracted significant investments, including partnerships with entities such as the BAL, Arsenal FC, Paris Saint-Germain FC, FC Bayern Munich, and TIME Magazine.
Mark Tatum, NBA Deputy Commissioner, expressed confidence in Akamanzi’s ability, stating, “Clare’s business acumen, international experience, and familiarity with basketball and the NBA make her the ideal executive to lead our business in Africa.”
He envisions that under Akamanzi’s leadership, NBA Africa and the BAL will continue to contribute to economic transformation across the continent.
Akamanzi, an accomplished business executive and international trade and investment lawyer, has a rich background in international trade, business, and diplomacy.
She holds a master’s degree in public administration from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government and a Master of Laws degree in international trade and investments from the University of Pretoria in South Africa. She was recognized by Forbes as one of Africa’s Top 50 Powerful Women in 2020.
Expressing her excitement for the role, Akamanzi highlighted the positive impact sports, particularly the NBA and the BAL, can have on businesses, families, and communities in Africa. She looks forward to building on the momentum and contributing to the growth of basketball and its associated economies across the continent.