Posted by: Armel | January 30, 2010

HAITI Donations could reach $1billion

Just as almost every other Nation did, The Cameroonian head of state, Paul Biya, has approved sending a police contingent and a financial contribution of 500 million CFA in Haiti in crisis since the earthquake disaster. Despite the recession in the United States, donations came in at a faster pace than anyone imagined. All major International Organization pledged hundreds of millions of dollars in donations, and this could very well reach U.S $1billion.

With all the hoopla about the intended use of all the donations, and the real opportunities for the local population once all the attention fades away, it’s fair to question the commitment of the international community. Who’s really going to benefit from this huge donation pool ? After all, if France was so bend on helping Haiti survive economically during all these years of hardship, they could have simply cancel the public debt repayments, and invite others to do the same. But again, these are some of the facts about devoloping countries, that often fail to trigger a reaction until something of this magnitude occurs.

Armel Njeunou

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Posted by: Armel | January 30, 2010

Africa Cup of Nations: The Aftermath

Was Angola just not ready, or was it a colossal failure from the CAF ( African Football Confederation) & Organizing committee (COCAN) ?

It’s a long debate with arguments on both sides that might surge again if such a “drama” was to happen in South Africa this summer. The loss of human life at an event to celebrate peace and fraternity is a reality check for all. A brutal one at that !

But looking back after all the events unfolded, this is probably one of the worst P.R I’ve seen.  At first, COCAN said there was no shooting. Soon after after 3 people have died, they started to blame the Togolese delegation for taking a bus instead of flying to the venue. It is inconceivable that such a comment could be attributed to an official at this level.

The African football confederation president Issa Hayatou needs to get rid of his whole P.R or Communication staff.

Posted by: Armel | January 18, 2010

African Cup of Nations: Test of National Pride?

African Cup of Nations Vs English Premier League. Or how to apply passion for premier leagues matches as a sign of deeper issues for Africans.  Simon kuper of the sporting life column in the FT, suggests that nationalist sentiment in African countries is eroding. And to argue his point, he enlisted a Nigerian University Lecturer who conducted a “poll” of  TV viewership during the previous African Cup of Nations (2008) Vs  English Premier League matches in the same period. The assumption here is that since football fans were more interested in Premier leagues matches than games played by the Super Eagles (Nigerian National Team), this could imply ” the diminishing importance of a Nation” in favour of allegiance to a European football club !

 

 Although there exist a  trend among football fans in some African countries – where the National Team is not used to victories – to look towards club matches , it’s too far fetched to link it to a collapse in Nation building.  During the African Cup tournament, it’s not hard to find football fans from a competing Country support the National Squad of another African nation instead. But to use sport passion as a sign of a decrease in national pride is a huge leap, rather it should indicate the success of a global reaching marketing campaign by leading european clubs (Barca, Man.U etc..)

Armel Njeunou

Posted by: Armel | January 9, 2010

La Colonisation: Tout s’explique !

La colonisation ou encore la naissance des plus grands groupes industriels Français

 

Un siecle plus tard, l’un des empires mentionés dans la video ci-haut fait son entrée triomphale sur la place boursiere (cliquez ici). Decidemment, tout s’explique !!

Posted by: Armel | January 9, 2010

Twitter Profitable in 2009 ?

A random published article around the end of year 2009, claiming sources inside the company, put the company in the black for the year 2009. 

However,  it’s easy to put in doubt that notion, based on the fact that the only items taken into consideration were revenues from deals signed in the last quarter with Google and Bing. Although those revenues brought cash up to $25 millions, it’s worth noticing that since the company doesn’t release any long term revenues strategies, it could be challenging to know for sure how they intend to do it going forward. With many accounts and clients signing up everyday, some tend to forget the underlying costs twitter itself has to fork out to wireless companies (sms functionalities). Given the climate (stalling growth) in the telecoms industry in the US, it’s hard to imagine how twitter can obtain huge discounts for the services, because wireless providers themselves are counting on these types of content sharing apps to maintain revenues projections.

We’ll see what happens end 1st quarter ’10.

Posted by: Armel | November 29, 2009

DUBAI: is it over ?

After huge building projects  fueled growth in the emirates, recent events suggest the stalling in construction might signal the end of the boom.

After moving from a regional trading center to a global business capital with a large inflows of human capital, Dubai is now struggling to keep up with the growth recorded over the last decade. As of last week, the Government of Dubai was attempting to renegotiate billions of dollars of accumulated debt,  and asking Financial Institutions to suspend some interest payments coming due soon.

The bulk of the growth decline can be linked to real estate extra-large construction projects such as the World Islands, but can other sectors like tourism create alternate growth opportunities? If not, then it will really be over !

Posted by: Armel | October 25, 2009

Frontier Markets in Play

      

emerging-markets

 

The noticed inflow of  fresh foreign investment into emerging markets, should raise growth prospects in Frontier Markets in Sub-Saharan Africa.

According to recent published data, foreign investments into emerging markets are reaching record levels unseen in 25 years. This resurgence of foreign capital into developing economies pushed the brazilian government to create a new 2% tax on these foreign capital inflows. Although this rule was deemed necessary to halt the rise of the local currency (Real), it’s nonetheless unprecedented for emerging countries to pass such precautionary measures.

On the flip side, once the valuation of local investments in Brazil, China, and South Africa can no longer sustain this continued flow of capital, the underlying assets would need to expand beyond their traditional borders into frontier markets (for revenues). When all is said and done, Frontier Markets will represent the only untapped source of  potential growth sought after by investors, and it might take diversification & expansionist strategies by emerging markets – business leaders – to get there.

Posted by: Armel | October 5, 2009

The Japanese Motto

       NOBUO KUROYANAGI-MUFG

 

“..Even as civilisation continues to march on, we need to return to our roots from time to time and ask ourselves whether we are contributing to the happiness of the human race. If we blindly pursue profits to an excessive degree, it results in many things going wrong … Before the crisis, it was said that the profitability of Japanese banks was too low but it is clear -with hindsight- that the profitability of western banks was too high. Financial Innovation is fine as long as it leads to greater social welfare, but financial institutions must always remember their roots as providers of security in the economic infracstructure…”

NOBUO KUROYANAGI Head of MUFJ Financial Group: the largest bank in Japan

 

FT , STR/AFP/Getty Images

Posted by: Armel | October 5, 2009

THE DEAL is OFF AGAIN !!

                          bhartiMTNDealOff

 

One of the biggest deal  in the Telecoms sector between MTN and BHARTI-AIRTEL was called off for the second time !

If the M&A Operation had gone through, it would have catapulted Bharti Airtel to become the third largest telecom services provider spanning 20 countries and 200 million subscribers globally. MTN is leading the pack in the Sub-Saharan Africa region and would have expanded its reach to Asia thanks to tie-ins via Airtel. But, it has been said that the South African Government did not want to give away such a flagship Iconic company. MTN represents way too much for Pretoria, and forking over its control to Bharti would leave a bad taste no matter the exchanged price.

With that said, it’s not completely over.. Something might pop again soon between these two.

Armel Njeunou

Posted by: Armel | September 26, 2009

CAMEROON: LOCAL GPS IN THE WORKS

                                    nodis

After saying that I personally believed Digital Mapping was a gold mine for African web app developers, because of the variety of revenues streams that could be derived from it, here come NODIS  from Alain Nono and Christian Nono in Cameroon. Along the different services they have available, an early development of a GPS customized with local street maps  for Douala and Yaoundé.

I’m glad to find out about this development; these guys are making it happen with no help whatsoever from the Authorities. There are unlimited possibilities once the streets mapping stage is completed. Although this will probably be more complex since the streets are not numbered nor registered in public databases, the information will have to be manually entered.

Armel Njeunou

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