South Africa’s wine tourism industry continues to grow and gain recognition, attracting local as well as international visitors. This affirms the countries place as one of the wine tourism capitals of the world. CNBC Africa’s Benedict Pather found out more.
Entrepreneur Alpesh Patel was born in Uganda after his family relocated from India, but moved to the UK during the Idi Amin regime. After completing university, he started selling mobile phones to the Chinese and made his first million at the age of just 23.
He later relocated to South Africa, and eventually ended up working for Motorola in Africa. But in 2008, decided to quit his job to start his own pan-African mobile phone brand, Mi-Fone. The company manufactures low-cost handsets, and within its first five years sold over 1.5m devices across the continent.
Patel is also the CEO of Mi-Group and Oju Africa, which launched the world’s first African emoticons this year. How we made it in Africa recently caught up with him to find out what tips he has for other entrepreneurs on the continent.
As the next big frontier for market growth, Africa is rich with potential. But African businesses have been slow to capitalise on this, and stand to lose out to foreign players, says LGR Telecommunications.
VENTURES AFRICA – Sub-Saharan Africa holds massive potential for economic growth, with six of the top ten fastest-growing economies in the world located in this region. Blessed with rich natural resources and a young, fast-growing population, Africa is set for rapid growth – a fact that has not escaped the attention of giant multinationals operating out of Asia, the US and Europe. Ironically, Africa’s own enterprises are proving slow to capitalise on the growth opportunities in Africa, and stand to lose out to competitors from abroad, if they do not take action soon.
The ICT sector has possibly the most to gain in an African economic boom, as ICTs underpin every development initiative in every industry vertical. Connectivity in particular, is crucial for development. From agriculture and education, to enterprise development, ICT is a crucial factor in modernising and optimising every sector. And because nobody understands Africa like Africa itself, African ICT companies should be expending across borders to deliver relevant solutions that support overall social and economic growth and development. Yet, we are seeing many African ICT players slow off the mark, hesitant to expand into neighbouring countries and losing the ICT market share race to major international players.
Africans equate prosperity to achieving financial freedom; this is according to Barclays Africa’s latest report. Barclays Africa report says Africans equate financial freedom to prosperity.
The Barclays Africa Prosper Report captures what ‘prosper’ means to Africans in 11 of the countries surveyed.
The survey, which was conducted online, surveyed over 7,000 respondents from South Africa, Zambia, Botswana, Kenya, Ghana, Mozambique, Seychelles, Mauritius, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe.
Maria Ramos, chief executive of Barclays Africa Group Limited 0.00% said the survey provides invaluable insights into what is important to people, their dreams and aspirations – essential intelligence if we are to contribute to building strong and sustainable economies on the continent.
Tremendous efforts are under way to upgrade sub-Saharan Africa’s infrastructure. But the needs on the ground are still immense as evidenced by the frequent electricity blackouts, poor roads, and insufficient access to clean water in many countries.
Infrastructure is one of the key challenges facing policymakers in the region — I experienced it first hand when I was finance minister of Liberia before coming to the IMF. The benefits are fairly clear: with improved infrastructure, new growth opportunities in the manufacturing and services sector can be generated, barriers to intraregional trade can be reduced, and economies will be better positioned to transition from low to higher productivity activities. Without improved infrastructure, I fear the increase in productivity and greater economic diversification necessary to sustain Africa’s current growth momentum will not materialize.
In this spirit, in the latest Regional Economic Outlook: Sub-Saharan Africa economists from the IMF’s African Department looked at progress so far in addressing the infrastructure deficit and discussed policies needed going forward.