Claude Grunitzky, 44, is among the Africans of the diaspora who have gained an international reputation far from their homeland. His name is a familiar one in his home country as he is the nephew of Nicolas Grunitzky, who was the second President of independent Togo from 1963 to 1967. He is also the nephew of Lionel Zinsou, a Franco-Beninese economist, merchant banker and head of the new AfricaFrance Foundation, which aims to revive economic relations between France and Africa. This citizen of the world, with three passports (Togolese, French and American) has successfully made his own name by taking a new path. Son of a diplomat, his schooling was in Washington and his university education in Paris and London. He became a journalist and busi- nessman and in 1996, he founded the review True, then the cultural magazine Trace, which has become the musical television channel Trace TV, based in New York and is enjoying great success in Africa. For the last five years, he has been busy with another venture as the head of a communi- cation agency called True, which in September 2015 will launch True Africa, a company devoted to media and digital innovation on the continent. Claude Grunitzky, who rarely gives interviews, is also the author of an essay entitled: Transculturalismes (Grasset, Paris, 2008), and is a researcher and lecturer at the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT, Boston, United States).
Interview Cécilia Emma Wilson – You left Lomé at the age of eight and you are the nephew of a President. Do you have any memories of your childhood in Togo? Claude Grunitzky – Many! I grew up in a family where politics were discussed a great deal in the 1970s. At the time, my father was involved as he was the Minister of Finance. It was a time of euphoria and optimism in the wake of independence. Everything could be built or envisaged. There was...
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