AfDB, Canada launch CAFC fund for climate change related projects

AFRICA – African Development Bank (AfDB) has signed an agreement with the Government of Canada to formalize the Canada–African Development Bank Climate Fund (CACF), a transformative special fund aimed at providing concessional loans to climate change-related projects with a strong gender-responsive component. The fund will be capitalized through a combination of a CAD 122.9 million (US$104.8 million) repayable contribution, aimed at providing concessional loans for both sovereign and non-sovereign operations plus a CAD 10 million (US$7.95m) grant contribution for complementary technical assistance. The African Development Bank will administer the fund.…

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E-health startup VRapeutic joins Canada’s MakerLaunch programme in its expansion plans

EGYPT – VRapeutic, Egyptian e-health startup that uses virtual reality (VR) technology to help treat learning difficulties and developmental disorders, has joined the MakerLaunch programme at the University of Ottawa, moving it one step closer to expanding into the Canadian market. Launched in 2017 by Ahmad Al-Kabbany, VRapeutic, who researched VR for his PhD in electrical engineering, uses virtual reality (VR) technology to help treat learning difficulties and developmental disorders. VRapeutic delivers VR software modules, installed on VR headsets, to therapy centres, with a child then watching particular modules dependent…

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Pfizer, BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine shows 90% efficacy

WORLD – American multinational pharmaceutical corporation Pfizer Inc has said its experimental vaccine was more than 90 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 based on initial data from a large study, a major victory in the fight against a pandemic that has killed over 1 million people, roiled the world’s economy and upended daily life. Pfizer and German partner BioNTech SE are the first drug makers to show successful data from a large-scale clinical trial of a coronavirus vaccine. The companies said they have so far found no serious safety concerns…

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Satellite communications company Globalstar receives terrestrial authorization in Kenya

KENYA – American satellite communications company Globalstar Inc. has obtained terrestrial authorizations in Kenya, Brazil and Canada. The three countries represent an additional covered population of 300 million and 3.7 billion MHz-Pops, bringing the company’s total terrestrial authority to over 9 billion MHz-Pops and coverage of a total population of approximately 700 million. “Since completing the FCC licensing process for terrestrial service in 2.4 GHz, we have pursued a global initiative to obtain terrestrial authorizations in a multitude of countries in pursuit of commercial spectrum global harmonization. We are incredibly…

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Financial institution FinDev Canada CEO set to step down after completing its start-up phase

GLOBAL – Development Finance Institute Canada (FinDev Canada), a financial institution that supports inclusive private sector growth and sustainability in developing markets has announced that its CEO, Paul Lamontagne, is stepping down. “I’m leaving FinDevCanada after successfully completing its start-up phase. DFI is now globally recognized as a gender-lens investor. As its first CEO, I wish to thank our Team, Board & Advisory Council for their support. It’s been a real honour to lead FinDev Canada,” Paul said in a tweet. Paul Lamontagne has played a pivotal role in launching…

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Namibia Critical Metals secures US$4.37m investment from Alumina Partners

NAMIBIA – Namibia Critical Metals Inc., a Canadian public company, has secured an N$65 million (US$4.37m) investment from Alumina Partners (Ontario) Ltd in Canada. Announcing the investment facility recently, company president Don Burton said the financial injection is structured to provide the company timely access to private placement financing in times of need and help expedite exploring for gold deposits in central Namibia. An official statement by the company indicated the terms of the investment agreement will see it access a facility of N$65 million (US$4.37m), at its sole discretion…

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Hudson’s Bay Co secures shareholder approval to become a private company

UNITED STATES – Hudson’s Bay Co has said that it has won shareholders’ approval to become a private company in a C$2 billion (about US$1.5 billion) deal proposed by Chairman Richard Baker. According to Reuters, Baker and his partners had been in a tussle with the department store operator’s top shareholders over the deal. The retail mogul fell short in an earlier vote to approve his take-private quest last year, Reuters reported, but later won the support of a significant shareholder after bumping the offer price to C$11 per share.…

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French locomotive giant, Alstom to buy Bombardier rail unit for up to US$6.7 bn

FRANCE – Alstom SA, a French multinational company with interests in the locomotive industry, has agreed to buy the rail division of Canada’s Bombardier Inc for up to 6.2 billion euros ($6.7 billion). The agreement between Alstom and Bombardier would unite companies with an estimated $17 billion in combined revenue. Reuters reports that the acquisition will create the world’s No. 2 train manufacturer and better position the European company to take on Chinese leader CRRC Corp. The French firm said the two were complementary geographically, adding Bombardier’s European footprint was…

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Airbus, Quebec join forces in bid to buy out Bombardier’s A220 stake

FRANCE– Airbus has teamed up with the Quebec government to buy Bombardier’s 33.5% stake in the A220 passenger jet program. The deal completes Bombardier’s exit from civil aviation and boosting Airbus’s position in a new battleground with Boeing. Montreal-based Bombardier first ceded control of the A220 program to Airbus in 2018 for a token as part of broader efforts to improve its finances. Under the terms of the deal, Airbus’s stake in the A220 program – known as Airbus Canada – increases to 75% from 50.1%, while Quebec’s holding rises…

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Canada’s JCM Power closes first institutional equity offering at US$116m

Tunisia to join International Solar Alliance

AFRICA – JCM Power Corporation, a Canadian-based renewable energy company, announced that it has closed its first institutional equity offering, securing a total of US$116 million. Five development finance institutions participated. These include FMO (the Dutch development bank), Swedfund (the Swedish development bank), IFU (the Danish development bank), FinDev Canada (the Canadian development bank) and STOA Infra & Energy (a French Company owned by CDC and AFD). The offering also saw participation from prominent Canadian family offices and foundations. JCM Power had previously secured commitments from the FMO (US$25 million…

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