The backbone of Africa: Entrepreneurs who refuse to quit (PART III)


Reposted from The Globe and Mail
By Geoffrey York

PART 1: What is gained and lost as investment outpaces aid
PART 2: Russians building luxury homes in Congo? Get used to it
NOW: The hotel magnate who used to hide from rebels
PART 4: Weary of handouts, Africans try enterprise
PART 5: The impact of the new land grab
PART 6: How the boom can transform Africa

In this third of a six-part series, Globe and Mail Africa correspondent Geoffrey York investigates how Africa’s growth is changing its future.

By the age of 33, Wilfred Sam-King had earned and lost a fortune three times over. Each time he built a business from nothing, he saw it looted or torched in a coup or a rebel invasion.

When rebels laid siege to Freetown in 1999, they searched everywhere for Sierra Leone’s famed businessman, aiming to take his money. One day they captured him – but he had disguised himself in shabby clothes, pretending to be his own cook. He made soup for the rebels for three days before escaping.

Refusing to leave his homeland – even after his wife and children found shelter in Canada during the civil war – he patiently rebuilt his fortune again, and today has created a small empire of hotels, retail shops and other businesses worth $20-million.

His determination has made Mr. Sam-King one of Sierra Leone’s most successful entrepreneurs – and living proof of the persistence and imagination that is transforming Africa’s economy. Continue reading “The backbone of Africa: Entrepreneurs who refuse to quit (PART III)”

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Facebook got Trashed


On September by 22nd Andrew Bary from Barron’s ran an article on Facebook. It’s very similar to what mentioned a couple months ago and anyone with a basic sense of valuation. It’s a very good truthful no fluff article. The article doesn’t try to intentionally damage the company like a lot of the crap on the web. The article simply states the obvious. Why is this stock trading at such high multiples? The IPO valuation was out of this world. The valuation is still out of whack today. The results has been disappointing investors. Here is a sample of what I wrote June 22nd:

So how much is FB worth?
Let’s say the earning per share doubles from .40 to .80 cent per share in the next 5 years. With a PE of 15x = $12
20x = $16

This is not hard math. This is not heavy research due diligence insider information stuff. This is simple back of the napkin reasonable valuation. Facebook needs to prove that it has a business model. Google has one. Apple has one. And they are both making a killing and there shares are trading at reasonable valuation.

The only thing that I see when buying this stock is
1) The dream of potentially finding a way to monetize their 950 millions users.
2) Figuring out mobile

Facebook is doing everything they can to lose me. They change their model/interface way too often, alienating me. Can you get rid of that timeline? The page looks like puke. But I do like the banner at the top of the page. That’s nice. Their is tons of issues with their privacy settings. I clicked on “like” on a friend jogging’s picture and as soon as I refreshed the page I got swamp with jogging ads. I go on Facebook because that’s where you go, just like it’s the only bar in town. It’s doesn’t have to be good but that’s where everyone is.

There aren’t any alternative. They won’t be for a while. Google+ seems to pick up steam but hasn’t reached that tipping point. It has over 200M+ accounts but I think most of them are just ghost accounts. I don’t know anyone spending time on Google+. Facebook has this high-switching cost stickiness to it. Your friends are on it, your groups, your pics, your games etc….that doesn’t change overnight. So the at the moment, the hassle is > than the benefit of switching.

Now the article:

…the stock trades at high multiples of both sales and earnings, even as uncertainty about the outlook for its business grows.

Continue reading “Facebook got Trashed”

Africa next: The quest for Africa’s riches (PART II)

Reposted from The Globe and Mail
By Geoffrey York

AFRICA NEXT: A SIX-PART SERIES

PART 1: What is gained and lost as investment outpaces aid
NOW: Russians building luxury homes in Congo? Get used to it
PART 3: The hotel magnate who used to hide from rebels
PART 4: Weary of handouts, Africans try enterprise
PART 5: The impact of the new land grab
PART 6: How the boom can transform Africa

In this second of a six-part series, Globe and Mail Africa correspondent Geoffrey York investigates how Africa’s growth is changing its future.

Driving north in Africa’s copper belt, Mark Crandon marvels at the new factories and offices along the highway. “It’s crazy,” he says. “None of this was here three weeks ago.”

It’s an unlikely place for a foreign investor to be raving about. The Democratic Republic of the Congo is one of the world’s most corrupt, impoverished and war-torn countries. Millions have died in the military and political chaos of recent years. Yet even here, the lure of the Africa boom is proving irresistible. Continue reading “Africa next: The quest for Africa’s riches (PART II)”

Africa next: With investment outpacing aid, is this a new golden age for the poorest continent? (PART I)


Here is a six-part series straight from the Globe and Mail. Good research and piece by Geoffrey York.

From The Globe and Mail:
AFRICA NEXT: A SIX-PART SERIES

NOW: What is gained and lost as investment outpaces aid
PART 2: Russians building luxury homes in Congo? Get used to it
PART 3: The hotel magnate who used to hide from rebels
PART 4: Weary of handouts, Africans try enterprise
PART 5: The impact of the new land grab
PART 6: How the boom can transform Africa

In this first of a six-part series, Globe and Mail Africa correspondent Geoffrey York investigates how Africa’s growth is changing its future.

In the dusty streets of the tiny village of Romaro, a building boom is under way. Crumbling mud shacks are being replaced by new tin-roofed houses. Almost overnight, the village’s ancient way of life has vanished. Most of its farmland has been swallowed up by a Swiss multinational, Addax Bioenergy, which has leased more than 14,000 hectares of Sierra Leone for a $330-million sugar-cane plantation to produce ethanol for the European market. Continue reading “Africa next: With investment outpacing aid, is this a new golden age for the poorest continent? (PART I)”

Part 3 – The Gold Series: Infographic by Visual Capitalist

Here is the third part of a four part serie on gold. Courtesy of Visual Capitalist.

Part 1: History of gold
Part 2: Mining and supply

Part 3: Uses and Demand
Part 4: As an investment

Country Snapshot Series: Laos (Part 2)

If you are looking for Part One
You can also find part I and II at Emergingfrontiersblog.com

Part 1: Laos’s Economic Development and Background
Part 2: Laos’s Securities Exchange and IPOs
Part 3: Upcoming IPOs

Laos (Part 2 of 3)
By Brian Langis

Laos Securities Exchange (LSX)
The Lao Securities Exchange (LSX) began operations in January 2011 and is the first and only stock exchange in Laos. Technical and financial support is provided by the Korea Exchange (KRX), which owns a 49% stake in the exchange. Continue reading “Country Snapshot Series: Laos (Part 2)”

The Frontier Markets’ Resurgence

Originally reposted on Emergingfrontiersblog.com

Reposted from Bloomberg Businessweek
By Roben Farzad

As far as investing goes, the economic battlefronts of Europe, China, and the U.S. seem like the only concern.

Meanwhile, as if it could not care less about all that, Sierra Leone, the West African nation still shellshocked from years of truly horrific bloodshed, is building a stock market. Sitting on the corner of the edge of what they call the investing frontier—tiny, illiquid markets aspiring to graduate to emerging-market status Continue reading “The Frontier Markets’ Resurgence”

if history repeats itself… (post Facebook IPO predictions)

Nice reprint from Chris Dixon on Facebook. I just stumble on that piece but he actually wrote it back in January, before the Facebook IPO. He made some nice logical predictions. I wonder up to what extension the Facebook IPO disaster would have affected his prediction. Didn’t that help that’s for sure. Chris is Co-founder/CEO of Hunch (acquired by eBay). Follow him at cdixon.org Original here.

If history repeats itself, the Facebook IPO will mean:

– a bunch of second-tier social media companies go public to satisfy
investor demand for “social media allocations”
http://cdixon.org/2011/06/16/allocation-investing-and-the-social-premium/
(facebook’s reportedly small float of 5b will make this more likely)

– high private valuations for social media companies will last at
least another year Continue reading “if history repeats itself… (post Facebook IPO predictions)”

SAM Study – Investing in Food and Agribusiness

Here is a report on making the case for investing in the agriculture business. Good read, informational, great for anyone interested or wants to know more investing in the agriculture industry.

SAM Study – Suistainable Investing

Play a part in an African investment story

Original repost from Emergingfrontiersblog.com

Reposted from The Financial Times
By Brendan Maton

If agriculture seems like the investment story of the moment, then Africa is its most exciting chapter.
One-third of private equity funds specialising in agriculture are focused on this continent, according to analysis by the International Institute for Environment and Development.

Sub-Saharan Africa alone offers 590m hectares of available cropland to develop, according to Zürich-based advisory firm, EBG Capital. The rest of the world offers just 380m hectares. This is key given that cropland use has only increased 2 per cent globally in the past 15 years. Continue reading “Play a part in an African investment story”