Kenya: Latest News
Betting On Poorer Africans, Soros-Backed Leapfrog Raising $800M For Investments, Eyes Kenyan InsurersBy Dana Sanchez, 9:50 am
LeapFrog Investments is betting on poorer Africans, or “emerging consumers” because they outnumber the continent’s middle class about four to one. Kenya’s new regulations will create buyout opportunities. Nigeria’s huge population and Ghana’s more sophisticated consumers make those markets attractive too. “We’re looking at payment companies because it’s becoming a popular tool that just offers much cheaper ways of doing business” across the continent, a LeapFrog partner said.
Dana Sanchez, 10:53 am
They made headlines around the world when peaceful protests against government land use changes turned violent. Now Oromo voices are being heard thanks to an entity more often associated with tourism than governance — UNESCO. The traditional Oromo governance system, Gada, has been inscribed on UNESCO’s list of intangible cultural heritage of humanity. Gada could be a basis for modern democracy, researchers say. Gada has some features that differ from western democracies. One is the distribution of power. Another is a testing period for elected leaders.
Tom Jackson, 4:20 am AFKI Original
Drones are, without doubt, one of the next big things of Africa’s tech revolution. Slowly but surely, they are being introduced in innovative ways to help with the continent’s development. In an interesting move, the City of Cape Town last week announced a partnership with local tech firm WeFix to use drones to spot sharks at Fish Hoek and Muizenberg beaches.
Derek Dias, 7:00 am
The Horn of Africa is home to three of the least-visted countries on the continent — Eritrea, Djibouti, and Somaliland. Overshadowed by Ethiopia, these Horn countries don’t get many tourists and there are good reasons why. There are also good reasons to go. All offer big adventures. Laas Geel is the highlight of Somaliland. Hire a guide, driver, and obligatory armed guard and set out through the desert to a series of caves housing the oldest rock art in East Africa. You’ll probably be the only tourist. Maybe your guard will let you shoot off a few rounds from his AK-47 if you ask nicely.
Dana Sanchez, 2:42 pm
Five candidates for the top African Union job will face off Friday in a first-ever televised debate. African citizens will get to ask the candidates questions via social media about their vision for the continent. The A.U. hopes the debate will popularize it. Does the A.U. need to be popularized? Some consider A.U. support of withdrawal from the International Criminal Court as dangerous for Africa. The public won’t actually be voting for the next A.U. chairperson, but as the institution evolves, maybe one day that will happen.
Kevin Mwanza, 1:06 am
Solar energy, a cheap power alternative to the vast population in sub-Saharan Africa with no access to electricity, has economically empowered the women entrepreneurs in Tanzania who work even after night falls. In Bunambiyu, a village in the northern region of East Africa’s second largest economy, solar-powered lanterns have greatly improved the social-economic lives of the rural population.
Dana Sanchez, 2:33 pm
Fethullah Gulen, a cleric living in exile in the U.S., has inspired schools all over the world. The Turkish president wants those schools closed. Gulen-inspired schools have existed in Turkey since the 1970s, but only became a global phenomenon in the past 20 years as Gulen grew closer to President Erdogan, whose Islamist-rooted AK Party won in 2002. Since 2013, Erdogan has demonized Gulen and wants schools and hospitals belonging to Gulen supporters confiscated or closed. Turkey invested $6.2 billion in Africa in 2015. At least six African countries have agreed to let the Turkish government take over private schools linked to Gulen.
Kevin Mwanza, 4:41 am
Toyota Tsusho, owned by one of the world’s leading auto-mobile makers, Toyota Group, bought a 9.5 percent stake in Kenyan-based tech firm, Seven Seas Technology, in a deal worth $3 million. The deal was carried out through CSV Africa, a Toyota Tsusho venture fund set up in 2014. The investment is set to prepare the Kenyan firm for its initial public offering set for 2020 when it will list on the Nairobi Stock Exchange
Tom Jackson, 4:20 am AFKI Original
The majority of African cities are striving to be tech hubs. From Cairo to Accra, Lagos to Nairobi, Cape Town to Johannesburg, cities are striving to emulate Silicon Valley as tech hubs. Nairobi’s iHub launched with government support, and the Enterprise Kenya initiative is designed to assist local startups. In Lagos, the presidency has offered backing to tech startups, and there are a myriad of hubs.
Dana Sanchez, 2:50 pm
London-based discount airline Fastjet is seeking another injection of capital and trying to stabilize its business by cutting unprofitable routes. It’s hoping to add internal South African flights — a crowded market but one it said it can’t ignore. Fastjet was engaged in a price war with Kenya Airways. Now it’s cutting routes. Traded on the London Stock Exchange, Fastjet wants to be the first pan-African low-cost carrier, but has not made a profit since its 2012 inception. A new, sooner-than-expected capital raising effort in the first quarter of 2017 prompted Fastjet Chairman Colin Child’s resignation.
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