Business: Latest News
Staff, 8:31 am
eBay opened up its U.S. platform to Africa through its partnership with MallforAfrica.com. Americans can now buy products on eBay from select vendors in six African countries, starting with merchandise in fashion, art, jewelry, and clothing. MallforAfrica selects the sellers and handles payments. DHL is the shipping. Online shoppers can browse the entire collection on eBay’s Mall for Africa Store. The new online channel expands an existing relationship between the two e-commerce companies.
Peter Pedroncelli, 7:05 am
Facebook plans to roll out its Developer Circles initiative in four cities across South Africa, which serves to allow members to interact and learn about developing on the social media platform. The free community-driven initiative will now be available to developers in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Pretoria. Developer Circles members meet up on a regular basis to discuss projects that they are working on and assist each other in solving problems.
Peter Pedroncelli, 6:02 am
Google’s emerging markets startup accelerator, Launchpad, has expanded to seven additional African countries from the original three eligible for the program since May of this year. This means that growth stage startups in Algeria, Egypt, Ghana, Morocco, Tanzania, Tunisia, and Uganda can now apply to be part of the accelerator program. Previously the only three African countries considered for applications were South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria.
Peter Pedroncelli, 8:25 am AFKI Original
There are a number of ways in which drone technology is positively impacting industries in Africa, with numerous sectors benefiting from the advantages that drone tech provides. Previously associated with warfare and destruction, drones of all shapes and sizes are now being developed to tackle everyday issues and empower communities across the continent. From agriculture to safety in shark-infested waters, drones have found their place in a modern African context.
Peter Pedroncelli, 5:50 am
South Africa and Russia have reportedly signed a cybersecurity cooperation agreement that will see the two BRICS nations working closer together in an effort to strengthen their defenses against cyber threats. The deal was officially signed at the BRICS summit in Xiamen, with high level diplomats from both countries, Sergey Lavrov of Russia and Maite Nkoana-Mashsbane of South Africa, putting pen to paper on the agreement.
Peter Pedroncelli, 4:33 am
A Kenyan taxi-hailing app called Little Cab is set to take on the Nigerian market from October, moving on to turf currently dominated by more established players in Uber and Taxify. Kenyan tech firm Craft Silicon’s on-demand ride service, which is backed by leading East African mobile operator Safaricom, will launch operations in the Nigerian city of Lagos from October 8.
Peter Pedroncelli, 1:03 pm AFKI Original
Mobile operators in sub-Saharan Africa have a unique set of challenges that they face in the region, but if they manage to overcome these obstacles, success awaits. Sub-Saharan Africa is home to many mobile operators who have dominated their markets, from Vodacom in South Africa to Safaricom in Kenya, but that dominance has not come easy. Now a fresh set of issues stand in the way of further success on the continent.
Peter Pedroncelli, 6:24 am
South African IT firm Datatec has completed the sale of U.S. subsidiary Westcon-Comstor’s operations in North America and Latin America, as well as 10 percent of Westcon-Comstor to Fortune 500 company SYNNEX. The deal could be worth up to $830 million, with $630 million paid in cash and up to $200 million payable as a cash earn-out, subject to Westcon Americas meeting pre-approved gross profit performance targets.
Staff, 11:15 am
GreenWish Partners is planning to invest $800 million on solar-powered telecommunications towers across Africa. The project could fuel economic growth by providing power for essential services. Sub-Saharan Africa has the lowest rates of energy access in the world and is home to about half of the world’s 1.2 billion people without reliable electricity, according to the International Energy Agency. The problem extends to businesses as well as households, cutting into productivity and growth.
Staff, 8:09 am
Last week was a big week for Ugandan fintech startup Numida, as it was declared winner of the Kampala leg of Seedstars World, securing its place at the global final in Switzerland next year where it stands the chance of securing $500,000 in funding. The startup already secured $140,000 in funding from angel investors, and is in the process of raising a $500,000 seed round. The startup has seen 15 percent week-on-week growth since March, and has disbursed 160 small business loans to 105 clients.
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