Browsing: East Africa

Vantage Capital invests US$25 million in Aquasantec International
  • Vantage Capital pumps $25M in Aquasantec International for water, sanitation, and hygiene projects across East Africa.
  • Vantage Capital acquired a controlling shareholding in the Group, while also seeing the disposal of shareholdings by the founding Shah family, the Ramco Group, and Terra Mauricia.
  • The partnership between Vantage Capital and Aquasantec exemplifies the transformative impact that strategic investments can have in the vital sectors of water, sanitation, and hygiene

Vantage Capital, a renowned mezzanine debt fund manager in Africa, has made a significant investment in Aquasantec International. Aquasantec is a manufacturer and distributor of water tanks, pipes, and related products, dedicated to addressing the critical needs of water, sanitation, and hygiene across Eastern Africa.

This strategic investment, totalling $25 million was executed in June 2023, and it encompassed both mezzanine debt and ordinary equity. It will result in Vantage Capital acquiring a controlling shareholding in the Group as part of a …

Plastic pollution. Recycling funding does more to address the challenge. www.theexchange.africa
  • Leaders are meeting in Nairobi for the Eastern Africa ‘Waste is Wealth’ conference.
  • The inaugural Waste is Wealth Series is organised by Taka Ni Mali, East African Business Council, and Alliance for Science.
  • The three-day conference is themed: Promoting Effective Waste Management Practices for Environmental Conservation and Climate Change Mitigation.

The concept of a circular economy is fast gaining momentum in East Africa with both the private sector and government’s stuck on the drawing board shaping policies and regulations to help realise the shift.

World business leaders, policy makers, academics and NGOs have argued that a move towards a more circular economy is necessary to help solve global environmental and economic challenges.

Moving towards a more circular economy could increase competitiveness, and stimulate innovation. It will also boost economic growth and create jobs across economies.

Waste is Wealth

It is against this background that leaders are meeting in Nairobi for …

gen z
  • About 84% of millennials and Gen Zs consume media at home. A  majority (88%) of them use data bundles to access content online.
  • About 44 percent spend over four hours a day on social media. This is more than triple the number of millennials and Gen Zs spending over four hours on radio (13%) and TV (12%).
  • More than half (55%) are spending 6-9 hours a day online while a further 20 percent spending over 10 hours per day.

A new survey has revealed a number of media usage behavioral traits that brands and companies keen on attracting millenials and Gen Z need to know.  Their by leveraging their media consumption patterns, brands would easily optimise their content to inform positioning their products and win this new market base.

Gen Z, millennials spend 10 hours online

About 8 out of 10 or 84 percent of millennials and Gen Zs usually …

KCB Group CEO Paul Russo.
  • In the three months to March 2023, Group’s total assets rose by 39.8 percent to close at $11.8 billion buoyed by DRC subsidiary TMB.
  • Revenue increased by 26.9 percent to $267.4 million mainly driven by the non-funded income from customer transactions across the Group.
  • This is the Group’s newest subsidiary in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
  • It demonstrated the range and diversified income streams across the group’s businesses, adequate to cover the elevated operating and funding costs.

Regional lender KCB Group Plc posted $68.8 million in profit after tax for the first quarter 2023, a marginal drop attributable to acquisition and consolidation costs of its newest subsidiary, Trust Merchant Bank (TMB), in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

In the quarter, however, the Group recorded a strong balance sheet growth with total assets hitting $11.8 billion, with TMB contributing 14 percent to the Group’s total assets. The bank said this was …

Dr Kamau Thugge
  • Dr Kamau Thugge, who is President Ruto’s advisor on fiscal affairs, is set to take over from Dr Patrick Njoroge.
  • Previously, Dr Thugge served as the Permanent Secretary at Kenya’s National Treasury between 2013 and 2019.
  • Prior to his nomination as Principal Secretary, he worked as a senior economic adviser in the Ministry of Finance since 2010.

President William Ruto has nominated former IMF economist Dr Kamau Thugge for appointment to head the Central Bank of Kenya. Dr Ruto picked Dr Thugge out of a list of six candidates who were interviewed on May 9th for the job that helps define Kenya’s fiscal policy.

Dr Thugge is not a stranger at Kenya’s financial industry. For close to 10 years, between 2013 and 2019, he served as the Principal Secretary, National Treasury under former President Uhuru Kenyatta. He was, however, hounded out of office over allegations of corruption. The scandal, which …

Kenya's tea sector
  • Across the East Africa region, Rwanda posted the strongest performance.
  • Uganda’s economy grew by 4.4 percent in 2022 compared to a 6.7 percent uptick in 2021.
  • Tanzania’s real GDP expanded by 4.5 percent in 2022 compared to 4.9 percent growth in 2021.

Kenya’s economy recorded a slower growth of 4.8 percent last year as agriculture slumped due to severe drought. In 2021, Kenya posted 7.6 percent growth as the country emerged from Covid-19 induced economic fallout.

Latest data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics show that East Africa’s economic powerhouse growth outpaced its neighbours. Kenya saw its nominal GDP increase to $98.24 billion, from $87.98 billion in 2021, retaining its pole position over East African peers.

Uganda’s economy grew by 4.4 percent in 2022 compared to a 6.7 percent growth in 2021. The marginal drop was partly on account of recovery in hospitality and other service sectors as schools …

Kenya-CNN Promotion project.
  • 20 investments  in manufacturing, ICT, energy, health and agri-business have been signed in past two months.
  • Latest Kenya-US trade ties place the East African country at a pole position on attracting more American dollars.
  • Since President William Ruto took office in September 2022, Kenya-US engagements have been on a full throttle.

Deepening Kenya-US trade ties have started to pay dividends as American firms move to invest in East Africa's largest economy. With modern infrastructure, and skilled labour force, Kenya offers one of the best opportunities for US investors eyeing the region.

Currently, Kenya is the second most preferred destination by Americans seeking to invest in Africa. The 2023 US government review shows Kenya hosts 142 American firms while Nigeria has 195 conglomerates.

Latest developments, however, place Kenya at a pole position in attracting more American investors in the short to medium-term.

Deepening Kenya-US bilateral ties

Since President William Ruto took…

China tourists
  • In a fresh strategy, Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) says arrivals from China hold massive potential in contributing to the country’s tourism earnings.
  • China accounted for 82,180 and 83,388 arrivals in 2018 and 2019 respectively positioning itself as Kenya’s sixth largest source market.
  • Before the pandemic, China was the world’s largest outbound travel market with over 150 million travelers, whose spending contributed up to $255 billion to global tourism industry. 

The Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) is looking to capitalize on outdoor and nature-based tourism experiences, a move aimed at attracting a significant number of Chinese tourists to sample the sector’s offerings in East Africa’s largest economy. 

KTB Chairperson Francis Gichaba says the initiative is part of the state agency’s efforts to shore up tourism numbers from the growing Chinese market even as the industry recovers from Covid-19 pandemic-induced hit.

Mr Gichaba said the new strategy is aimed at increasing arrivals from

Trucks at Kipevu station
  • In East Africa, cargo transportation costs are exorbitant, ranking among the highest globally
  •  High logistics costs translate to expensive basic commodities like food across the continent
  • Tech startups are collaborating with various stakeholders to enhance infrastructure and simplify trade, manufacturing, and logistics processes

In East Africa, cargo transportation costs are exorbitant, ranking among the highest globally. A Shippers Council of East Africa (SCEA) survey in 2021 revealed that transporters who use the Northern Corridor, a trucking route serving countries like Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, the DRC, and South Sudan, incur an estimated cost of $1.8 per km per container.

This figure is almost double the global average of $1 per km per container, making logistics complex and expensive for African businesses. The situation has been worsened by the current record-high fuel prices in Kenya, Uganda, and other East African countries.

To add to this, poor infrastructure in several parts of …

martin.mwita . How illict trade. Illict alcohol IMG 8099 1 scaled 1
  • The country is considered East Africa’s strongest economy.
  • It is among countries facing a huge challenge of illicit trade, estimated to be valued at above USD6.34 billion (Ksh800 billion).
  • According to official government data, up to 70% of imported goods are counterfeits.

Kenya has a domestic market of over 50 million people and is among the leading economies in sub-Saharan Africa.

The country is considered East Africa’s strongest economy, with the region having a GDP of about USD163.4 billion (at purchasing power parity, about USD$473 billion), and the average GDP per capita is about USD941 (at purchasing power parity, $2,722).

In addition to the EAC market, investors in the partner States have access to other African markets such as COMESA, SADC and AfCFTA, as well as international markets through preferential trade arrangements.

The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) comprises 21 Member States with a population of 560…