Helen's Feed
Apr 17, 2014

Africa’s hunger for data sends satellites into orbit

JOHANNESBURG, April 17 (Reuters) – Africa’s demand for
bandwidth is doubling every year, outpacing the laying of
terrestrial telecom fibre links and encouraging commercial
satellite operators to launch more units into orbit.

The arrival of submarine cables on Africa’s eastern shore
just five years ago was largely expected to herald the end of
satellite connections, which had been the region’s only link to
the outside world for decades.

Apr 14, 2014

Pistorius ‘using emotions as an escape’, prosecutor says

PRETORIA (Reuters) – The prosecutor in the Oscar Pistorius murder trial on Monday accused the track star of using motional breakdowns under cross-examination to evade answering questions about the night he killed his girlfriend.

The Olympic and Paralympic sprinter, who faces life in prison if convicted of murdering Reeva Steenkamp, says he shot the 29-year-old model in a tragic accident, firing at what he thought was an intruder hiding behind a locked toilet door.

Apr 11, 2014

Africa’s fast growth transforming commodity flows

DAKAR/JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – For centuries, colonial era merchants tussled for access to Africa’s raw materials, and huge swathes of Africa’s geography became synonymous with the main commodity they exported: Gold Coast, Ivory Coast, the Spice Island of Zanzibar.

But the continent’s booming economic growth and swelling population give it an opportunity to shift away from the traditional raw material export model towards consuming and transforming its own commodities and selling them to its own expanding local markets.

Apr 10, 2014

BNP Paribas to buy S.African unsecured lender for $253 mln

April 10 (Reuters) – BNP Paribas, France’s largest
bank, has offered to buy South African unsecured lender RCS
Group for 2.65 billion rand ($253 million) from clothing
retailer Foschini Group and Standard Bank,
they said on Thursday.

RCS, which offers store credit cards and personal loans and
insurance, is owned 55 percent by Foschini and the remainder by
Standard Bank, Africa’s largest lender.

Apr 9, 2014

South Africa’s Transaction Capital eyeing acquisitions worth $190 million: CEO

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa’s asset-backed lender Transaction Capital (TCPJ.J: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is scouting for businesses to buy over the next 18 to 24 months and plans to spend 2 billion rand ($190 million), its chief executive said on Wednesday.

Transaction Capital has 750 million rand left over after selling two companies last year and plans to raise the remaining amount by borrowing or issuing new equity, David Hurwitz told the Reuters Africa Investment Summit in Johannesburg.

Apr 8, 2014

BancABC in talks to raise up to $300 million in 2014: CEO

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – BancABC, the Botswana lender that Bob Diamond’s investment company Atlas Mara (ATMA.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is seeking to take over, is lining up lines of credit worth $100-$300 million this year, its chief executive said.

The bank is already in talks with lenders such as the European Investment Bank and the African Development Bank, and expects a further injection of $100 million once the deal with Atlas Mara is concluded.

Apr 8, 2014

Insurer Sanlam plans 3-4 African acquisitions this year

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa’s largest insurer Sanlam (SLMJ.J: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) plans to conclude three or four acquisitions in other African countries this year as it chases faster-growing markets, a senior official said.

Sanlam, which already has businesses in 10 English-speaking countries on the continent, is turning its focus to neighboring Portuguese-speaking nations and further afield to north Africa, its head of business outside South Africa said.

Mar 16, 2014

Mozambique fiscal deficit seen widening to 9.5 pct -IMF

JOHANNESBURG, March 16 (Reuters) – Mozambique’s overall
budget deficit is projected to widen to 9.5 percent this year
from 3 percent in 2013, the International Monetary Fund said, as
the country continues its spending-driven quest for economic
growth.

In a report published on its website, the IMF said the
mineral-rich southern African country’s economy could grow by
more than 8 percent this year after expanding by about 7 percent
in 2013, but warned that the deficit level is unsustainable.

Mar 7, 2014

South Africa, Rwanda expel diplomats in row over Rwandan exiles

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa expelled three Rwandan diplomats it linked to a raid on an exiled Rwandan general’s Johannesburg home, and Rwanda has retaliated by ordering out six South African envoys, officials said on Friday.

The row strained ties between two African states involved in efforts to bring peace to eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, where South Africa has troops in a U.N. brigade that fought last year against rebels whom U.N. experts said received support from Rwanda. Kigali denied backing the Congolese rebels.

Mar 7, 2014

South Africa, Rwanda expel diplomats over attack on dissident Rwandan general

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa expelled three Rwandan diplomats it linked to a raid by gunmen on a dissident exiled Rwandan general’s home and Rwanda ordered out six South African envoys in retaliation, a diplomatic source said on Friday.

Late on Monday, armed men broke into the Johannesburg home of former Rwandan army chief General Faustin Kayumba Nyamwasa, an exiled critic of Rwandan President Paul Kagame.