July 2015 African Business News


P-Square perform at the Mawazine music festival in Morocco in May. Fade Senna / AFP

Nigerian duo P-Square represent Africa's rise in the pop world

When P-Square talk about keeping it in the family, they mean it. The Nigerian pop duo are not only twins who perform together, they also live and record together in a compound in the country’s capital, Lagos.

Lagos, Nigeria

Meet Some Of The Lagos Luminaries Shaping Nigeria's Tech Scene

President Barack Obama may be the most famous citizen of the United States traveling around Africa this week, but he’s not the only one.

Airbnb

House sharing service Airbnb plans Africa expansion

Airbnb is hoping to spread its unique brand of hospitality throughout Africa. The San Francisco company, which allows people to rent rooms in their private homes to travelers over the Internet, held an event July 27 in Johannesburg, where Airbnb Chief Executive Officer Brian Chesky walked local reporters through the company’s ambitions in the world’s second-most populous continent.

Convergence Partners raises $200M for largest ever fund dedicated to Africa ICT infrastructure

Convergence Partners raises $200M for largest ever fund dedicated to Africa ICT infrastructure

Convergence Partners, an investment management firm focused on the African telecommunications, media and technology sector, has announced the successful final close of its Convergence Partners Communication Infrastructure Fund (CPCIF).

Nigeria's Biggest Miller Targets Acquisitions for Growth

Nigeria's Biggest Miller Targets Acquisitions for Growth

Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc, the country’s biggest miller by market value, will seek expansion opportunities in Africa after streamlining its domestic business to focus on food in the continent’s biggest economy.

SkyPower signs $2.2B agreement to build 1 GW of solar energy projects in Kenya

SkyPower signs $2.2B agreement to build 1 GW of solar energy projects in Kenya

SkyPower, the world’s largest developer and owner of utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) energy projects, signed a landmark agreement with the Kenyan Ministry of Energy and Petroleum for the development of 1 GW of world-class solar projects to be built in four phases in Kenya over the next five years.

Ethiopia's government agreed to purchase power in an accord signed on Monday during President Barack Obama’s visit to the Horn of Africa nation. Photographer Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Africa's fastest growing economy Ethiopia agrees on first deal for privately produced electricity

Ethiopia’s government signed a deal to buy electricity from a geothermal-power plant being developed by companies including Reykjavik Geothermal Ltd. of Iceland, a partner in the project said.

Afriflora, a rose farm in Ethiopia, attracted a $200M investment from private equity powerhouse KKR last year.

From milk to roses, private equity investments in Africa on the rise

From milk churning in Zimbabwe to rose growing in Ethiopia, private equity investments in Africa have returned to pre-crisis levels and should keep rising as funds seek bumper returns in far-flung markets.

Safaricom's M-PESA

The battle between Africa's mobile phone companies and banks is a boon for financial inclusion

Another week and another bank in Africa is entering the mobile money space.

General Electric Co (GE) CEO for Africa, Jay Ireland. Photographer: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg

GE books $2.5B in African orders from oil to locomotives, beating 2018 target by $500M

General Electric Co. booked $2.5 billion of orders from sub-Saharan Africa in the past 11 months, including oil and gas equipment for Eni SpA in Ghana and locomotives for Angola.

The Co-Creation Hub Nigeria (CcHUBNigeria) in Yaba, Lagos, Nigeria. Credit: techpoint.ng

Yabacon Valley: Nigeria tech startup enclave springs up in Lagos suburb

At first glance, Yaba is like many other parts of Nigeria’s sprawling commercial capital: a cacophony of car horns and shouting street vendors mingling with exhaust fumes.

Under the deal, Diageo is selling a 42% stake in DHN Drinks Ltd. and a 15% stake in Namibia Breweries to Heineken. Photographer: Adam Berry/Bloomberg

Diageo Dissolves Heineken Venture to Go Solo in South Africa

Diageo Plc said it’s dissolving a joint venture with Heineken NV in South Africa and neighboring Namibia three years earlier than planned so the world’s largest distiller can fully own its operations in those countries.

Eko Atlantic, Lagos, Nigeria

Eko Atlantic: Why Nigeria's plans for a dream Eldorado city in Lagos are not radical enough (Video)

The government of the state of Lagos–Nigeria’s commercial capital–has proudly proclaimed it is building a new city that will become the new financial centre of Nigeria, and perhaps West Africa.

Jakaya Kikwete, President of Tanzania

What has been President Jakaya Kikwete's economic legacy in Tanzania?

After ten years in power, Jakaya Kikwete’s presidency is coming to an end this October.

A farmer, left, accepts cash payment for his grain from a buyer in the village of Damo Dulele, Ethiopia, in February 2015. Growth in Ethiopia has beaten every other sub-Saharan country over the past decade. Photographer: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg

The world's most optimistic people live in Africa (Infographics)

Sure, France has Paris, Provence and the Palace of Versailles. But when it comes to optimism about the domestic economy, the French have nothing on Ethiopians.

4 reasons investors should seriously look to Africa for tech

4 reasons investors should seriously look to Africa for tech

In recent years, Africa has become a hotbed of technological innovation. The spread of mobile technology has spurred new companies, such as delivery service MamaMikes, which allows dispersed family members to send gifts …

Donald Kaberuka, whose tenure as African Development Bank president ends in September, has warned African countries to keep an even economic keel. Photograph: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

African Development Bank chief urges continent to learn from Greek crisis

Donald Kaberuka, the outgoing president of the African Development Bank (AfDB), has cautioned African countries to heed lessons from the Greek debt crisis and consolidate economic stability, with growth in the continent set to be driven by increased public expenditure.

US Federal Reserve Board building

How will US monetary tightening impact African markets?

The US Federal Reserve is set to tighten its monetary policy for the first time after the 2008 global financial crisis.

Arunma Oteh, former Director General of Nigeria's SEC and incoming World Bank Vice President and Treasurer

Former Director General of Nigeria's SEC Arunma Oteh appointed World Bank Vice President and Treasurer

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim today announced the appointment of Arunma Oteh as Vice President and Treasurer of the World Bank.

Change of pace: growing numbers of young Africans have flourishing businesses — Bloomberg/FT

African Entrepreneurs - A new generation leads the way: Financial Times (Report)

Start-ups are thriving and helping to change perceptions of business in Africa. As ever-increasing numbers of cars clog the streets of African cities, trade flourishes along congested highways.

South African mining billionaire Patrice Motsepe, Founder and Executive Chairman of African Rainbow Minerals

Billionaire Patrice Motsepe and insurance company Sanlam partner to launch $500M private equity fund

Insurance company Sanlam and mining boss Patrice Motsepe’s company Ubuntu-Botho will invest in various industries including mining and financial services.

Muhammadu Buhari, President of Nigeria

Nigeria's president to split state oil company NNPC into two entities

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari plans to split the state-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) into two entities, his spokesman said on Saturday.

The Africa-America Institute (AAI) State of Education in Africa Conference 2015

Top Educators and Innovators to Gather for AAI’s 2nd Annual State of Education in Africa Conference in Lagos, Nigeria

Educators and innovators from across Africa and the U.S. will gather for a solutions-driven global education conference, convened by The Africa-America Institute, aimed at putting forth a bold agenda to improving the educational landscape in Africa.

Sheel Gill, Head of Transactions and Restructuring, KPMG Kenya

Unpacking private equity in East Africa with KPMG Kenya's Head of Restructuring and Transactions, Sheel Gill

East Africa’s share of private equity transactions on the continent has been rising steadily over the past few years.

#SomeoneTellCNN: CNN gets ridiculed on Twitter for calling Kenya a "Hotbed of Terror"

#SomeoneTellCNN: CNN gets ridiculed on Twitter for calling Kenya a "Hotbed of Terror"

US President Barack Obama is visiting Kenya this week and CNN has been reporting on how the region is a so-called “Hotbed of Terror”. CNN’s narrow characterization of Kenya has spawned a particularly heated and amusing backlash from well-informed Twitter users who got the mocking hash tag #SomeoneTellCNN trending worldwide.

AFP/AFP/File - Undated photograph of Colonel Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, leader of the breakaway Republic of Biafra, giving a press conference in Enugu, Nigeria during the Biafran war

Biafra casts long shadow over Nigeria, nearly 50 years on

Radio Biafra. Its name is synonymous with the declaration of independence and updates on the brutal conflict that followed, but nearly 50 years after Nigeria’s civil war, Radio Biafra is again making headlines.

Aliko Dangote, Dangote Group's Chairman and Africa's richest man

Buying Arsenal will put Nigeria on the map, says Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote

Nigerian businessman Aliko Dangote says that he is interested in purchasing Premier League club Arsenal in order to boost the profile of his homeland.

Nigerian billionaire business man Aliko Dangote. Credit: Benedicte Kurzen/NOOR/theafricareport.com

Billionaire Aliko Dangote's smooth landing

With a new government in power, the business magnate is betting on his huge refinery and agriculture projects taking off. Meanwhile, Dangote Cement continues an expansion plan that has left others scrambling to catch up.

Ercin Eksin (Left) and Tunde Kehinde, Co-Founders and Managing Directors, Africa Courier Express (ACE). Credit: techpoint.ng

Starting Jumia helped us build Nigeria's largest delivery network, say Africa Courier Express Co-Founders Tunde Kehinde & Ercin Eksin

Tunde Kehinde and Ercin Eksin are the Founders and Managing Directors of African Courier Express, ACE. The duo were among the pioneers of e-commerce in Nigeria …

South Africa's Naspers returns to bond market to fund emerging markets internet acquisitions

South Africa's Naspers returns to bond market to fund emerging markets internet acquisitions

Naspers Ltd. sold bonds for the first time in almost two years to fund emerging-market Internet acquisitions, a strategy that’s transformed the media group into Africa’s biggest publicly traded company by market value.

James Mwangi, CEO, Equity Bank

Kenya's Equity Bank starts mobile money service Equitel to challenge Safaricom

Kenya’s Equity Bank said it would press ahead with offering mobile phone transfer services, stepping up competition to telecoms firm Safaricom’s money transfer product.

Table Mountain, Cape Town, South Africa. (Reuters/Mike Hutchings)

South Africa's new visa rules are turning visitors away

South Africa’s tourism business index is at its lowest level since 2011, as visitor numbers decline due to the country’s new visa regulations.

Cyril Ramaphosa

Cyril Ramaphosa tops list of candidates for next President of South Africa, according to New World Wealth survey (Infographic)

Cyril Ramaphosa, South Africa‘s current Deputy President, is the top candidate for next President of South Africa, with 71% of respondents picking him over other likely candidates.

Muhammadu Buhari, President of Nigeria

Lessons Nigeria's Buhari can learn from Obama about managing a tough economy

It is atypical for an American president to invite a nascent African head of state to the White House, especially less than two months after the latter’s inauguration.

JPMorgan hires HSBC trader Lebogang Moropa to start up South Africa prime brokerage business

JPMorgan hires HSBC trader Lebogang Moropa to start up South Africa prime brokerage business

JPMorgan Chase & Co. rehired a trader from HSBC Holdings Plc as the biggest U.S. bank sets up prime brokerage operations in South Africa for the first time.

World's fourth-largest hotelier AccorHotels to open 50 hotels in Angola by 2017

World's fourth-largest hotelier AccorHotels to open 50 hotels in Angola by 2017

AccorHotels has sealed a deal with Angolan insurance and investment company AAA Activos to open 50 hotels in the country by 2017, the French company said, as part of its expansion in Africa.

M-PESA. (Reuters/Noor Khamis)

Kenya's Safaricom might have to spin off M-PESA, the world's largest mobile money business

The Kenyan government is introducing new regulations this week in parliament that could lead to the break-up of Safaricom, the country’s leading telecom company.

In this May 29, 2015 file photo, Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari, salutes his supporters during his Inauguration in Abuja, Nigeria. (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba, File) (Sunday Alamba/AP)

Nigeria committed to good governance and fighting terror: Muhammadu Buhari, President of Nigeria

This month, the world moved a step closer to the defeat of Boko Haram, the jihadist group that has terrorized hundreds of thousands in the northern states of Nigeria.

Amy Jadesimi, MD, LADOL (Lagos Deep Offshore Logistics Base)

Nigeria's New Direction: Amy Jadesimi, MD, LADOL (Lagos Deep Offshore Logistics Base)

Muhammadu Buhari’s inauguration on May 29, 2015 has taken Nigeria in a new direction, one that is so far characterized by national pride and international confidence.

Kenyan Millionaire Numbers Seen Rising at Double Global Pace

Kenyan Millionaire Numbers Seen Rising at Double Global Pace

The number of U.S.-dollar millionaires in Kenya will grow at more than double the global rate over the next decade as the economy expands, according to Africa’s biggest lender.

Delta Mall, Warri, Nigeria. Credit: estateintel.com

Resilient Africa is Investing $271M in shopping malls across Nigeria

By year-end 2016, Resilient Africa is set to have invested $271m developing shopping malls in 2nd tier cities across Nigeria.

M-PESA dominates mobile money in Kenya. (Reuters/Thomas Mukoya)

Safaricom and Airtel Kenya are taking their latest mobile money spat to court

The battle over Kenya’s mobile money space just got a little uglier.