AUGUST 17, 2022
3 min Read
Investor Updates: August 17, 2022
Google backs Kenya’s Lori Systems via its Africa Fund
- Lori Systems, an African on-demand logistics and trucking company digitizing haulage and providing shippers with solutions to manage their cargo and transporters, has raised a pre-Series B round in which Google participated along with other existing investors.
- Lori Systems’ announcement follows the opening of Google’s first product development center on the African continent, in Nairobi, Kenya, the city where Lori Systems was founded.
- The investment is meant to support the e-logistics company’s mission of expanding into the African market, digitizing haulage, and providing shippers with solutions to manage their shipments and haulers more efficiently.
This is the third startup in Africa to receive a similar investment from Google’s $50 Million Africa Investment Fund, which CEO Sundar Pichai announced in October 2021. South African game publisher, Carry1st and Ugandan super app, Safeboda are the two other startups in which Google has invested as part of its African Fund. The US tech giant launched the investment fund in order to support African startups and tech-led initiatives, promoting digital transformation and meaningful economic development.
Binance appoints ex-HSBC chief to lead its SA unit
- Binance, one of the world’s leading crypto and blockchain infrastructure providers, has announced the appointment of Hannes Wessels as its Country Head of South Africa.
- Wessels brings with him over 10 years of experience in the finance sector and is the previous Head of Global Banking for South Africa at HSBC. He is expected to lead the development of business strategies and drive strategic initiatives for Binance in South Africa.
- The firm says the new appointment will further its ambitions to drive its business operations in the region.
Cryptocurrencies and the blockchain industry generally have less than a 10% adoption rate in South Africa, per data from Finder. However, interest in the technology continues to grow and global industry leaders like Binance and Yellow Card remain at the forefront of driving adoption as well as blockchain education in the region, where unfavorable macroeconomic conditions – such as weak currencies and fragmented financial systems – support the adoption of cryptocurrency for personal and business purposes.
Angola records first initial public offering via Banco BAI
- Banco BAI, Angola’s biggest private bank, recently successfully completed the country’s first initial public offering (IPO) of shares and raised $94 million.
- This sets the scene for the first equity trades on the bourse, Bodiva, eight years after it was launched in 2014. The exchange has been trading government bonds and other debt, totaling $2 billion in 2020.
- More so, the government reportedly plans to sell its stakes in several companies, including television and telecommunications provider TVCabo Angola, bank Caixa Angola, oil company ACREP and fuel retailer Sonangalp.
Source: African Business
Under President Joao Lourenco, the southern African OPEC member has embarked on ambitious reforms to overhaul the state-dominated economy and attract private investment. In the BAI IPO, state-owned oil and diamond companies, Sonangol and Endiama completely sold their stakes in the bank. With Banco BAI’s successful IPO, raising $94 million, the country could be looking at a flood of listings and capital increases – which could help reverse the fortunes of an economy that’s been in recession for five years.