South Korea and AfDB to provide US$600m on energy projects in Africa

AFRICA – The African Development Bank (AfDB) has signed an agreement with the Korean Ministry of Economy and Finance and the Export-Import Bank of Korea, under which Korea will provide US$600 million in co-financing for energy projects alongside the Bank. The Korea-Africa Energy Investment Framework (KAEIF) pact follows the signing on 28 May 2021 of a General Cooperation Agreement between the Bank and the South Korean government. The KAEIF has a particular focus on renewable energy solutions in Africa, including generation, transmission, distribution, off-grid- and mini-grid, policy and regulatory reform,…

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The Egyptian-Saudi Joint Committee launches website to support MSMEs

EGYPT – The Egyptian-Saudi Joint Committee for the Development of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) launched a website to showcase its efforts, as part of US$200 million Saudi grant. The grant is dedicated to supporting the state’s efforts to bridge the gap between financial institutions and MSMEs and enable their access to financing through intermediaries. The launch coincided with the International Day of Micro, Small, and Medium-sized Enterprises that falls on June 27 and which was declared by the UN General Assembly to raise public awareness of their contribution…

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Logistic company Cainiao Network launches its first air cargo route between China and Africa

AFRICA – Cainiao Network, the logistics arm of Alibaba Group, has announced the launch of its first air cargo route between China and Africa aiming for booming demand for Chinese products and close bilateral tie between the two countries. Operating over six times weekly, the air freight service will ship parcels from Hong Kong to Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial center. Cainiao says the delivery time will take 20 days from China to Africa, which shows an improvement from the previous time of 60 days, which included transit into the Middle East.…

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Israeli’s Spacecom set to acquire 9.3% stake in Nuran Wireless

AFRICA – Spacecom, an Israeli satellite operator, is buying a 9.3% stake in rural connectivity provider Nuran Wireless to deepen its presence across Africa. The US$3.2 million deal includes exclusive rights for providing satellite capacity and bandwidth to Canada-based Nuran’s future operations in Africa, where Spacecom provides services with its Amos-17 spacecraft. It also covers managed services contracts Nuran has to extend French telco Orange’s mobile network in Cameroon and Congo. “The companies’ combined expertise and experience will ignite the potential of the rural market,” Nuran CEO Francis Letourneau said.…

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Fintech Carbon partners Visa to offer digital and physical issuance of Visa cards

NIGERIA – Carbon, a pan-African fintech company, has announced a strategic five-year partnership with Visa, the world leader in digital payments, to offer both digital and physical issuance of Visa cards to its customers. Carbon is launching Visa debit cards in the third quarter of 2021, roughly a year after shifting from being a leading digital lending company to becoming a digital bank offering a range of financial services including, savings and payments. By leveraging Visa’s payment functionalities, Carbon will deploy an instant issuance process in three key markets including…

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VC Empowerment Capital appoints Bongumusa Makhathini to lead its aggressive growth ambitions

SOUTH AFRICA – Black-owned venture capital firm Empowerment Capital Investment Partners (Pty) Ltd, has appointed Bongumusa Makhathini as its first Chief Executive Officer. The Harvard Business School graduate and current chairman of the SABC Board has held several directorships, including at South African Breweries as Director of Corporate Affairs & Transformation, British American Tobacco as Director of Legal & External Affairs and African Commercial Diplomacy Consulting as managing director. During the 2020/21 financial year, the South African venture capital firm, Empowerment Capital Investment Partners (Pty) Ltd has placed more than…

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Logistic startup Jetstream closes US$3m funding round lead by Alitheia IDF

GHANA – Jetstream, a logistics startup, has announced that it has closed a funding round of US$3 million with participation from Alitheia IDF, Golden Palm Investments, 4DX Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Asia Pacific Land, Breyer Labs, and MSA Capital. Jetstream is a tech-enabled logistics company that was founded by Miishe Addy and Solomon Torgbor in 2018 after observing the many challenges that companies faced at the ports with cargoes. Torgbor’s past work experience with Maersk freight forwarding company had exposed him to cargoes waiting for weeks because of errors in…

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TPS Eastern Africa to offer 200 million new ordinary shares in Rights Issue

KENYA – TPS Eastern Africa, the owner of Serena Hotels plans to issue 200 million new ordinary shares through a rights issue after its shareholders passed a special resolution during the company’s Annual General Meeting on 28th June 2021. According to the minutes of the company’s 49th AGM, investors passed the resolution to increase the authorized share capital from the current US$1.85 million to US$3.7 million through the creation of an additional 200 million ordinary shares with a per value of US$0.009 each. The new ordinary shares will “rank pari passu (equal…

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US$700m Africa Coast to Europe submarine cable goes live adding diversity to hyper-connected hubs in Teraco data centers

SOUTH AFRICA – The Africa Coast to Europe (ACE) submarine cable has gone live and is now available for interconnection at all three of Teraco’s data centres across South Africa, the company, the company has announced expanding access to broadband connectivity and digital services in Africa. ACE is the eighth submarine cable system to connect at Teraco, highlighting its position as the leading hyper-connected digital hub on the African continent. Spanning approximately 17,000 kilometers  along the West Coast of Africa, ACE connects to 24 countries before backhauling via MTN South…

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Crypto exchange company VALR launches free Rand payments platform

SOUTH AFRICA – VALR, one of South Africa’s largest crypto exchanges, has launched VALR Pay, a free, fast, and easy way to send South African Rand (ZAR) payments to any mobile number or email address. VALR.com was founded in 2018 with the backing of former FNB CEO Michael Jordaan and US crypto exchange Bittrex to bridge the gap between the traditional financial system and the new world of cryptocurrencies and launched bitcoin-rand trading in June 2019 and has since processed over US$4.2 billion in crypto trades. In early 2019, VALR had…

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