Over the last few years you’ve probably seen a great deal of coverage in the press about the Africa rising theme, usually with the oft –quoted statistic that 6 out of the 10 fastest growing economies in the world are to be found in Africa and backed up by weighty reports like McKinsey’s “Lions on the Move” all suggesting that African economic fortunes are on the up. What we haven’t seen much of is coverage on how businesses and individuals can best take part in and benefit from this investment frontier.
Last week I was chatting about this topic with emerging markets aficionado Nate Suppaiah who runs the excellent Alternative Emerging Investor Magazine; he pointed me in the direction of his new webinar series, which will start with a look at the private equity industry in Africa….and crucially it will provide practical information for potential investors on how the sector really works, a refreshing change from the macro analysis or vague generalisations I usually hear and read on the subject.
Having spent some time making private equity investments in the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, I can’t wait to listen in and learn more about how it works in Africa. Interestingly even activist Bob Geldof has got involved with private equity, moving on from giving lectures on African debt and poverty to investing in the continent and chairing the 8 Miles Fund, which has so far backed an Ethiopian winery as well as a commodity exchange in that country. The importance of local knowledge along with immature and illiquid stock exchanges in African countries means that the private equity industry will play a key role in providing finance to companies across the continent. Pioneers such as Miles Morland have been finding rich seams of opportunity in Africa for many years, now other funds like 8 Miles and Jacana Partners are springing up to reap the rewards of the continent’s economic growth.
Check out the webinar this Thursday September 26, 2013, 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM EDT or 18:00 – 19:00 GMT where Nate Suppaiah and Alex-Handrah Aimé, Managing Director of Emerging Capital Partners will be discussing the ins and outs of African private equity and practical ways to enter the market.