A packed room of businesspeople and investors assembled in London on 16 October to hear about opportunities and news at the UK-Ethiopia Trade & Investment Forum 2018. Leader of the delegation was Arkebe Oqubay, Economic Advisor to the Prime Minister, who gave a detailed overview of events of the last 6 months and the big ambitions driving Ethiopia.
One of Africa’s biggest economies. Ethiopia, announced a transformational liberalization and privatization campaign. But there is no Ethiopian stock exchange, limiting participation by citizens and domestic savings funds, and cutting transparency.
Africa’s economic opportunity and fast growth to 2020 compared to other economic regions – shows where African securities exchanges could be heading
Africa’s growth is slowing dramatically, says the International Monetary Fund, and is likely to be 3.75% this year and 4.25% next year. It could get worse if the global economy does not grow.
Charts circulated by Reuters show the rebased Nigerian economy as biggest in Africa, followed by sluggish South Africa, Egypt, Algeria, Angola and Morocco. They also show growth rates: oil-fuelled Ghana led the pack with historic growth of 10.2% a year over 2010-13.
Africa’s private equity firms have been finding great ways to realize value, fuelling and profiting from the continent’s soaring growth, but also helping Africa’s markets become more pan-regional and scoring successes by working closely with management teams to create value at investee companies.
The total value of mergers and acquisitions deals in Africa by foreign investors was $183 billion over the ten years 2003-2012, up threefold on the previous decade. Britain was the lead investor with with 437 deals worth $30.5bn.
“South Africa’s established and efficient debt capital market is a key competitive advantage for South African firms” writes Barry Martin, joint head of debt capital markets at Rand Merchant Bank. Corporate debt issued in the first quarter of 2013 was R6.1 billion ($612 million).
Sunil Benimadhu, CEO of the Stock Exchange of Mauritius and re-elected President of the African Stock Exchanges Association (ASEA) told the opening session of the African stock exchanges this morning that the world is changing, by 2050 African economies such as Nigeria and Egypt will be among the world’s biggest economies. Africa’s capital markets should play a key role in investment flows to drive this growth.
The World Bank has cut its growth forecast for sub-Saharan Africa. Earlier in the year it forecast 5.2% growth overall for SSA economies in 2012, but yesterday (4 Oct) it cut this to 4.8%.
“Africa reminds me of China back in 1999. If you missed China then, don’t do that (miss Africa) now,” is how Plamen Monovski, chief investment officer at Russia’s Renaissance Asset Managers, describes prospects for Africa. “It’s the last place in the world that is due for that rapid change and advancement.”
Government leaders, regulators and decision-makers across Africa recognize the success of private equity in growing companies, creating jobs and developing infrastructure. They are actively considering ways of encouraging flows of capital, both international and domestic, into private equity.
From the blog of Mark Mobius of Templeton Investments: “While Africa does have challenges, I am encouraged by another side of Africa that is gradually emerging with the development of capital markets, consumerism and technology.”
African exchanges could grow dramatically in both market capitalization and turnover in the coming decade, following the explosive trends already charted by the Indian and Chinese markets. This was the view of Sunil Benimadhu, President of the African Stock Exchanges Association (ASEA), speaking at an African investment conference organized by stockbroker Securities Africa in London on 14 March.
A leading African private equity firm, Citadel Capital based in Cairo, says change in Egypt brings “very compelling opportunities for long-term private equity investors in Egypt and beyond.” But it warned in a recent press release: “The situation on the ground in Egypt remains fluid” and there could be “short-term impact on both our investment and divestiture plans.”
On IMF forecasts Africa has 7 of the world’s top 10 places for fastest growing economies for the 5 years from 2011-2015, reports the Economist, and 6 of the top 10 over the past decade were also African.