Date Archives for January 2017
Dana Sanchez, 3:04 pm
BitPesa, a bitcoin payments startup that launched in Kenya and expanded in Africa and beyond, announced a $2.5M round of funding. The Series A round is led by Silicon Valley-based industry investor Draper VC, with existing U.S. investors. Series A investors are willing to take on the risk when a new venture is generating revenue but not yet making a profit. BitPesa will use some of the funds to move to Luxembourg. The firm’s goal is to be the largest payment company in the U.K., Europe and Africa.
Dana Sanchez, 1:11 pm
Aliko Dangote, CEO of Nigeria’s massive Dangote Group, said he wants to diversify his investments in Ethiopia, and he’s looking at sugar production. Ethiopia produces enough of its own sugar to finally stop importing it this year and start exporting it — a turnaround the government describes as revolutionary. Three new sugar refineries are scheduled to begin production this month. Construction is also planned for 10 new sugar factories for a total of 13 by 2020. Sugar is where Africa’s richest man cut his teeth.
Kurt Davis Jr., 10:23 am AFKI Original
French cosmetics company L’Oreal has invested in organic beeswax in Mali, the surprise country for 2017. Economic growth should hover around 5-to-6 percent this year as agricultural production strengthens. Lack of investment or interest in the country in recent years means there are unexploited opportunities with many investors still sitting on the sidelines. Opportunities exist in cashews, biofuels, shea butter and cotton. This year should see some investors put cash into the country, especially in agriculture.
Karen Elowitt, 8:02 am
Lions had strayed out of Nairobi National Park and they were preying on livestock. After combing the area for three hours, we were unable to locate the culprit. A community member proposed using tracker dogs. Sure enough, the lion roared inside the bush and we called in the vet team for sedating and relocating it back to the park. After the vet darted the lion, the lion didn’t move. We thought it was dead. We approached on foot. In a split second, the lion roared, jumped over the vehicle and ran away with the dart still in him. We gave chase for a while, then the drugs took control and he fell down. We narrowly escaped death that day.
Peter Pedroncelli, 7:43 am AFKI Original
The 2017 Africa Cup of Nations is underway in Gabon, with the 16 best teams in Africa fighting for continental glory. Among those teams are many of the continent’s best individual players, some of whom have been producing world-class performances in front of the AFCON crowds. Here we take a look at 14 African soccer players who are performing well at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations.
Peter Pedroncelli, 6:11 am
Today is transfer deadline day, and of course, there are some bits of last minute business that clubs in Europe are looking to conclude, with Super Eagles striker Odion Ighalo set to confirm his next move in the coming hours. A deal that is close to being officially confirmed is Nigerian striker Ighalo’s move from Watford in the English Premier League to Chinese club Changchun Yatai.
Dana Sanchez, 3:49 pm
A former Spanish colony, Western Sahara is the last unresolved African case on the U.N. Committee on Decolonization. The debate on readmitting Morocco to the A.U. was “an emotional call for the fight against colonization.” South Africa and Algeria were opposed. Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf said Morocco’s acceptance back into the A.U. was the will of the majority of member countries. Resolving the Western Sahara question will have to wait for another day. “Africa wants to speak in one voice. We need all African countries to be a part of that voice,” she said.
Dana Sanchez, 12:48 pm
The U.S. president’s travel bans provided a rallying call today for African unity. Today’s African Union summit had divisive issues on the agenda, including Africa’s relationship to the International Criminal Court and Morocco’s readmission to the A.U., but outgoing A.U. head Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma identified Trump’s refugee ban as one of the “greatest challenges to our unity.” A South African A.U. expert says the A.U. is more divided than ever, but it’s not over refugees. “You have all these calls for unity but actually… (it’s) over Morocco, the regional divisions and the ICC.”
Dana Sanchez, 11:11 am
Chad’s Moussa Faki Mahamat replaces South Africa’s Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who is expected to run for president of South Africa in a bid to replace her ex, Jacob Zuma. Mahamat, 56, previously served as the chairman of the A.U.’s Economic, Social and Cultural Council. His boss, President Idriss Deby, has ruled Chad for 26 years. Kenyan Foreign Minister Amina Mohamed was Mahamat’s main rival in the final round of voting. She is one of the most vocal critics of the International Criminal Court.
Julia Austin, 8:01 am
Botswana’s safaris are some of the most luxurious on the market, with prices to match. Rates at Wilderness Safaris’ Mombo Camp can start at $2,500 per person per night in peak season, but the wildlife experience is unmatched. Located in the Moremi Game Reserve in wildlife-rich Okavango Delta, their extravagant tents offer high-end amenities, knockout views, gourmet food and turn-of-the-century bush-camp atmosphere on steroids. Among the finest tented camps in the world, they’ve received top ratings from scores of publications and travel associations.
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