AfDB, Ethiopia, sign US$118m grant agreements to support agro-industrial park, youth employment and Ethiopia-Djibouti power interconnection

ETHIOPIA – The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) and the Government of Ethiopia have signed two separate grant agreements for new projects to boost youth employment and electricity trade between Ethiopia and Djibouti. The grants fall under the Bank Group’s concessional lending window, the African Development Fund, and will go towards the Productivity Enhancement to Support Agro-Industrial Parks and Youth Employment Project worth US$47 million, and the US$71 million Ethiopia-Djibouti Second Power Interconnection Project, which aims to boost electricity trade between Ethiopia and neighboring Djibouti. The industrial parks and youth…

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PowerGen secures US$9m, partners CrossBoundary Energy Access to build minigrids

NIGERIA – PowerGen, a leading distributed energy developer in Africa, has partnered with CrossBoundary Energy Access to build 28 minigrids after securing US$9 million in construction financing. Although the minigrids’ technical specifications are yet to be announced, PowerGen will develop and maintain systems to provide approximately 55,000 rural Nigerians with electricity. Each distributed energy system will consist of PV solar and battery storage built into a special purpose vehicle, serving residential, commercial and productive use customers in parts of the country without grid electricity. Under the unique “take-out at completion”…

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BAT Kenya maintains US$3.2m interim dividend on slight profit rise

KENYA – Cigarette manufacturer BAT Kenya has maintained Sh350 million (US$3.2 million) interim dividend after net profit for the six months to June rose by 0.71 percent, partly slowed by increased operating cost. The company’s half-year net profit increased by Sh19 million (US$175,519) to hit Sh2.69 billion (US$24.8 million) as sales volumes grew in the Covid-19 environment.  The board has approved an interim dividend of Sh3.50 (US$0.032) per share amounting to Sh350 million (US$3.2 million), being the same as what was paid in the preceding similar period. The payout is…

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Standard Chartered Bank Kenya adds two new directors to its board

KENYA – Standard Chartered Bank Kenya has appointed two new directors to replace Eng. Patrick Obath and Ian Bryden who left the board one month ago. The new directors are technology and innovation expert Nivedita Sharma and banking professional Birju Sanghrajka. Nivedita will serve as a non-executive director on the board chaired by Kellen Eileen Kariuki. She is a tech expert and currently serves as the Chief Operating Officer at BRCK, a software company that provides free public Wi-Fi to low-income neighborhoods in Nairobi. Nivedita Co-founded eLimu, a company credited for digitizing…

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Orange expresses interest for stake in Ethio Telecom

ETHIOPIA – French multinational telecommunications company Orange has submitted an expression of interest to participate in the ongoing partial privatization of Ethiopia’s Ethio Telecom firm for an undisclosed value, Ethiopia’s ambassador to Paris has revealed. Henok Teferra Shawl said in a tweet Orange had “formally submitted an interest to participate in the partial privatization of @ethiotelecom.” In June 2021, Ethiopia launched a tendering process for the proposed sell-off of a 40% stake in the state-owned carrier Ethio Telecom to private investors, part of the government’s broader plan to open up the Horn…

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PE Convergence Partners raises US$120m to drive Africa’s digital inclusion

SOUTH AFRICA – Convergence Partners, the private equity investment firm has announced the first close of its third fund after raising US$120 million. The Convergence Partners Digital Infrastructure Fund (CPDIF) is targeting a final size of US$250 million. The investment company now has more than US$400 million of capital under management. Investors in CPDIF include the CDC Group (the UK’s development finance institution), the US International Development Finance Corporation, the European Investment Bank, the International Finance Corporation and Proparco (the private sector arm of the Agence Française de Développement — AFD…

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Telkom South Africa CEO Sipho Maseko to step down after eight years at the helm

SOUTH AFRICA -Telkom South Africa group Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Sipho Maseko is leaving the telecommunications company after eight years at the helm. In a press statement, the Johannesburg Stock Exchange-listed firm says Maseko will step down as group CEO and executive director of Telkom and its subsidiaries on 30 June 2022. The process to appoint a successor is well underway and a designated group CEO will be announced in the not too distant future, says the telco. The statement added that Maseko would, for the remainder of his tenure,…

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Kenya Airways increases flights to European routes as summer demand surges

KENYA – National carrier Kenya Airways has increased frequencies to Europe following high demand from passengers seeking air travel for summer holidays. The carrier has increased weekly flights to Paris from three to four starting Saturday, July 17, 2021, London will get an additional flight from one to two starting July 27 while Amsterdam will get two frequencies beginning August 2, 2021. The rise in demand is the product of increased travel to Kenya and other East Africa countries by western tourists seeking safari visits and a view of the wildebeest migration in…

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Afreximbank and Portugal’s ANJE join hands to promote textile and manufacturing sector in Africa

AFRICA – The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has announced a three-year partnership with Portugal’s National Association of Young Entrepreneurs (ANJE – Associação Nacional de Jovens Empresários) to support Africa’s fashion apparel and textile manufacturing sector. The partnership is in line with Afreximbank’s Creative Africa Nexus (CANEX) program launched in 2020 to organize a series of events in the run-up to the Intra-African Trade Fair 2021, which will take place in Kigali, Rwanda. “We believe that the vast creative talent pool on the continent is an opportunity to accelerate Africa’s economic…

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Vista Group Holdings SA secures US$69m Intra Africa Investment Finance Facility from Afreximbank

WEST AFRICA – African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has closed a €59.2 million (US$69.72m) Intra Africa Investment Finance Facility to finance Vista Group Holdings SA’s acquisition of majority stakes in two banks. The banks are Banque Internationale pour le Commerce et l’Industrie de la Guinée (BICIGUI) and Banque Internationale pour le Commerce, l’Industrie et l’Agriculture du Burkina (BICIAB). The stakes in the two banks, which operate in Guinea and Burkina Faso respectively, are being acquired from BNP Paribas who is exiting these markets for operational reasons. The shift to African control…

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