News & Features from Staff Writer 3


Travelers at Johannesburg's OR Tambo International Airport

African countries are welcoming more tourists than ever before

Africa’s tourist spots were some of the fast-growing and popular destinations in the world last year.

GT Bank, Nigeria's biggest bank by market value, has raised the maximum monthly dollar spend limit to $1,000 from

Nigeria Banks Boosting Dollar Spending as Liquidity Improves

Nigerian banks are boosting dollar-spending limits for payment cards denominated in local currency as much as tenfold because of improved foreign-exchange supply.

Malusi Gigaba, South Africa's Minister of FinanceMalusi Gigaba, South Africa's Minister of Finance

South Africa Weighs State Internet Company Merger

South Africa is considering a merger of state-owned technology companies Broadband Infraco and Sentech to help to accelerate the rollout of high-speed internet to the population within three years, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Aliko Dangote, CEO, Dangote Group

Africa's Richest Man Invests $4.6 Billion in Nigeria Farming

Dangote Group, controlled by Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, plans to invest $3.8 billion in sugar and rice and $800 million in dairy production in the next three years as the company seeks to expand and deal with a shortage of dollars in its home market of Nigeria.

Oscar Onyema, CEO, Nigerian Stock Exchange

Nigerian Stock Exchange on course to list its own shares

A bill that has passed a second reading by Nigeria’s parliament could pave the way for the Nigerian Stock Exchange to issue its own shares

Etisalat Nigeria's new CEO targets profit after regulator rescue

Etisalat Nigeria's new CEO targets profit after regulator rescue

Etisalat Nigeria is focused on getting the telecoms group back on track to make a profit after it was saved from collapse, while working on the paperwork to eventually raise new capital.

Werner Vogels, CTO, Amazon.com

Amazon Web Services cloud platform considering hosting data centers in South Africa

Amazon Web Services is hoping to build cloud data centers in South Africa – an expansion was strongly hinted at by CTO Werner Vogels during the recent AWS Summit in Cape Town.

Africa's Liquid Telecom raises $700m in bond and term-loan issue

Africa's Liquid Telecom raises $700m in bond and term-loan issue

Liquid Telecom, an unlisted pan-African telecoms group, has raised $700m in a bond and term-loan issue that will help it refinance debt and provide a war chest for further acquisitions.

Is Nigeria's $300 million diaspora bond a worthwhile investment

Is Nigeria's $300 million diaspora bond a worthwhile investment?

Having been in the pipeline for some time now, Nigeria’s $300m London Stock Exchange-listed diaspora bond went down very well with investors, being 130% oversubscribed.

Funke Opeke, CEO, MainOne

MainOne CEO Funke Opeke on the challenges of and opportunities for investing in Africa

While many fear investing in Africa, one woman has not been afraid of doing so. Funke Opeke is the Founder and CEO of one of the continent’s largest ICT companies, MainOne.

Abraaj Group to buy African coffee chain Java House

Abraaj Group to buy African coffee chain Java House

Abraaj Group, an emerging markets focused fund group, has agreed to buy African coffee chain Java House from private equity rival Emerging Capital Partners and Kevin Ashley, the Nairobi-based company’s executive chairman.

Edwin Dande, Managing Partner & CEO, Cytonn Investments

Meet the Kenyan entrepreneur who built an $800 million asset management firm

Kenyan-born Edwin Dande is the Founder of Cytonn Investments, an alternative investment management and real estate company, with offices in Nairobi and the DC Metro area.

Orange & Vodafone are seeking to purchase 65% of Etisalat Nigeria

Orange, Vodafone are reportedly seeking to purchase 65% of Etisalat Nigeria

Orange Telecom and Vodafone are seeking to purchase 65 percent of Etisalat Nigeria following the departure of the UAE-based Etisalat Group from its Nigerian business, reports Brandish citing unnamed sources.

Johannesburg, South Africa

Rent is cheap in Johannesburg but expensive in Lagos, according to new study

People flocking to South Africa’s economic hub are likely to find some of the world’s cheapest rents.

The Silo: Is this Africa's best new hotel?

The Silo: Is this Africa's best new hotel? Check out photos

Cape Town’s The Silo Hotel — named after the former grain-silo complex in which it is housed — opened its doors in March as an instant Cape Town landmark.

The Pinnacle, Nairobi, Kenya

Work begins on the tallest skyscraper in Africa

The mighty peaks of Kilimanjaro and Kenya are the highest points in Africa, towering over the East Coast nations.

Sahel Capital closes agribusiness fund FAFIN at $65.9 million

Sahel Capital closes agribusiness fund FAFIN at $65.9 million

Sahel Capital, fund manager for the Fund for Agricultural Finance in Nigeria (“FAFIN”), is pleased to announce the successful $65.9 million final close of its debut fund.

Lagos, Nigeria

Fact of the Day: Nigeria to be 3rd most populous country by 2050 (Infographics)

By 2050 around 2.2 billion people could be added to the global population and more than half of that growth will occur in Africa.

Pictures of Sudan's Nubian pyramids

One of Africa's best kept secrets - its history

Africa has a rich and complex history but there is widespread ignorance of this heritage. A celebrated British historian once said there was only the history of Europeans in Africa.

Nigerian WiFi service provider Tizeti raises $2.1M in seed funding

Nigeria-based Tizeti, a WiFi service provider, has secured $2.1 million in seed funding. The investors included Western Technology Investment, Social Capital, Vy Capital, Picus Capital, Ace & Company, Lynett Capital Partners and Zeno Ventures.

Dominic Mensah, Prince Boakye Boampong, and Jesse Arhin Ghansah, the Founders of OMG Digital

Ghanaian new media company, OMG Digital, raises $1.1M in seed funding

Ghanaian tech startup, OMG Digital, has raised seed funding of $1.1 million from international investors.

South Africa's Naspers rules out $114 billion Tencent stake spin-off

South Africa's Naspers rules out $114 billion Tencent stake spin-off

South Africa’s Naspers (NPNJn.J) does not plan to spin off its $114 billion stake in Tencent, its boss said on Monday, a push back against investors urging a break-up to close a widening discount between its market value and that of its one-third stake in the Chinese internet company.

Nigeria has raised $300 million from its first ever diaspora bond

Nigeria has raised $300 million from its first ever diaspora bond

Nigeria’s diaspora population sent home $21 billion in remittances in 2015 and the government wants in on some of that cash.

Omobola Johnson, Senior Partner, TLcom and Nigeria's former Minister of Communication Technology. Credit: ITU

VC firm TLcom rakes in $40 million for new Africa fund

London and Nairobi-based venture firm TLcom Capital has raised $40 million for its new Africa fund. The target is $100 million. TIDE Africa Fund will focus on tech startups in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Bob van Dijk, CEO, Naspers

Africa's largest company to start funding roadshow in the US and UK

Naspers Ltd. will approach investors in the U.S. and the U.K. this about a bond issue as Africa’s biggest company by market value continues its acquisition-hungry quest to expand its internet businesses.

Keli Gadzekpo, CEO, Enterprise Group Limited (Center, standing). On March 13th, 2017, Enterprise Group opened an ultra-modern service center in Kumasi.

LeapFrog announces $180 million investment in Ghana's Enterprise Group

LeapFrog Investments, the profit-with-purpose investor in emerging markets, announced on Friday a total investment of USD 180m in Ghanaian financial services market leader, Enterprise Group Limited (EGL).

Godwin Emefiele, Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria

Investors cheer Nigeria currency shift, want more

Nigeria’s recent tentative steps to free up its naira currency, particularly via a new trading window, have gone down well with some adventurous stock and bond investors who are cautiously returning to the markets they fled two years ago.

Nairobi, Kenya. The East African country is attracting private equity interest. Credit: Alamy/Financial Times

Private equity looks to East Africa for investment opportunities

Buyout groups investing in Africa are turning east and shunning the oil-rich western part of the continent as they grapple with the effect of low commodity prices on private equity’s final frontier.

Bob Diamond, Chairman of Atlas Mara and former CEO of Barclays

Bob Diamond sells $200M Atlas Mara stake to boost holding in Union Bank of Nigeria

Atlas Mara raising $200 million to increase Union Bank stake. Fairfax Africa partners with firm by purchasing shares and bond.

Nairobi is one of the continent’s centers of startup activity.

The future of tech is in 'cities across Africa,' says this start-up CEO

Silicon Valley’s days leading the tech revolution may be coming to an end, according to one optimistic observer who believes the future of technology lies much further abroad than San Francisco.

Kenya's mobile internet beats the United States for speed

Fact of the Day: Kenya has faster mobile internet speed than the United States

Kenya has the world’s 14th-fastest mobile internet speed, according to a report from the content delivery network Akamai.

Jabu Moleketi, incoming Chairman, Vodacom

Vodacom names Moleketi as Chairman

South Africa’s Vodacom Group said on Thursday it has appointed non-executive director Jabu Moleketi to succeed Peter Moyo as the mobile phone network operator’s next chairman.

EFG Hermes eyes acquisition in Nigeria, Kenya brokerage licence

EFG Hermes eyes acquisition in Nigeria, Kenya brokerage license

Egypt’s EFG Hermes wants to enter Nigeria through an acquisition and expects to get regulatory approval to start a brokerage business in Kenya this year as part of a big push into frontier markets, a senior executive told Reuters last week.

Kenya to convert $243M debt in Kenya Airways into equity

Kenya to convert $243M debt in Kenya Airways into equity

Kenya will convert its $243 million in loans to Kenya Airways into equity, the government has said, as part of a broader restructuring to nurse the ailing airline back to financial health.

Africa's consumer data opportunity is being tackled by startups

Africa's consumer data opportunity is being tackled by startups

The Peter Drucker management aphorism, “You can’t manage what you can’t measure,” is a favorite of Yannick Lefang, the founder of Kasi Insight, an integrated marketing research firm operating in seven African countries.

Shoprite Holdings - An African consumer powerhouse

Shoprite Holdings - An African consumer powerhouse: Peter C. Thoms, CFA, Founder, Africa Capital Group

Shoprite Holdings Ltd., the South Africa-based supermarket chain, is our single largest holding in the retail industry in our Africa investment strategy.

The Wedding Party: Nollywood’s highest-grossing movie to date

From Hollywood To Nollywood: Nigeria's Walk Of Fame

Africa’s largest economy, Nigeria, has embraced the challenges of creating a film industry – Nollywood – that is markedly authentic, undeniably bold, and unapologetically true to its roots.

Examining the State of Hotel Development in Africa

Examining the State of Hotel Development in Africa

A total of 365 hotel chain development pipelines were reported in Africa in 2016, with 64,231 rooms.

M-Pesa

M-Pesa, Safaricom, Kenya regulators and Vodacom could be about to open up mobile money in Africa

M-Pesa, the mobile money system that is the pride and anchor of Kenya’s homegrown technology community, has had plenty of hype and excitement since its 2007 launch.

Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa

South Africa falls into second recession in a decade

South Africa has fallen into recession for the first time in eight years after economic growth shrank by 0.7% between January and March.

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Africa's economic growth in 2016 was driven by East Africa

While the continent’s major economies were hit by the fall in commodity prices in 2016, Africa retained its position as the second-fastest growing continent globally recording an average of 2.2% GDP growth.

Jes Staley, CEO, Barclays

Barclays to surrender control of Africa unit with £1.6bn sale

Barclays has been given regulatory approval for the sale of its remaining stake in its Barclays Africa Group, according to a unit of the business.