31 October, 2014

Chloride Exide Ltd -Sauti Sol's "Lipala" Dance 'Meme':Are Kenyan Corporates Catching up on Social Media Trends?

Music Videos are becoming a powerful tool in modern day business environment especially in the social media scene, ever heard of  viral video meme remakes of Psys Gangnam , Beyonce's " All The Single Ladies” Carly Rae Jepson’s “Call Me Maybe,” and now the" Sha Nay Nay"(made after the legendary Martin Lawrence character 'Sheneneh Jenkins')  dance trending in the USA. Well corporates and Ad Agencies in the West have discovered the powerful marketing effect available in such self made videos and have gone ahead to make renditions of the same shedding the all suit and tie perception and painting themselves as Social, Friendly, Caring, Engaging...

A Kenyan firm Chloride Exide Ltd with marked presence in the East African Region has caught up on the trend.Here is a video of the firms employees dancing the  MTV EMA best African Act Award 2014 winner " Sauti Sols"

Lipala Dance !The video has over 4,000 views as at 30 October, 2014 though it was published on 27 October, 2014.Will it go viral? talk about free advertisement !

21 October, 2014

General Electric bags two prestigious awards at coveted Africa Investor (Ai) Investment and Business Leader Awards 2014

•            GE Africa awarded Green Investment Initiative of the Year

•          GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt awarded Global Investment Personality of the Year

•          The Ai Investment and Business Leader Awards reward exceptional business practices, economic achievements and investments across Africa.

 WASHINGTON, October 21, 2014/ -- General Electric Company (GE: NYSE)picked up two awards at this year’s Africa Investor (Ai) Investment and Business Leader Awards. GE Africa was awarded Green Investment Initiative of the Year for the Power Africa initiative. In addition, GE’s global Chairman and CEO, Jeff Immelt was awarded Global Investment Personality of the Year. These awards are evidence of GE’s belief in the vast investment opportunities on the continent and the company’s commitment to the sustainable development of Africa. 

While congratulating the awardees, Hubert Danso, CEO and Vice Chairman of Africa investor, said he was pleased that with the awards Africa Investor is able to showcase African investment and business success stories. “We cannot emphasize enough the importance of the role these institutions play in improving the perception of Africa as an investment destination and we commend their contribution and commitment to this effort,” said Danso

GE Africa scooped the prestigious award in the Green Investment Initiative of the Year category. Some of the criteria used by the judges were evidence of efforts to support the sustainable growth of local markets as well as consistent involvement and commitment to financial transactions in Africa. The initiative that distinguished GE in this category was its Off-Grid Energy Challenge launched in 2013 in partnership with the US Africa Development Foundation (USADF) and the US Agency for International Development (USAID). This three-year challenge is part of Power Africa, President Obama’s initiative to increase access to reliable, affordable, cleaner and more sustainable power in Sub-Saharan Africa.  Power Africa is also helping ensure responsible, transparent and effective management of energy resources in Sub-Saharan Africa.  In its first year, 6 winners were drawn from Kenya and Nigeria whilst in 2014, 22 winners were drawn from Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, Ethiopia, Tanzania and Liberia. The winners all received $100,000 each, towards implementing or scaling up their renewable energy projects.

President and CEO for GE Africa, Jay Ireland emphasized that GE is in Africa for the long run and will continue working with various stakeholders in government and the private sector. He said, “GE is committed to continue partnering with Africa by broadening the innovation play, localizing our technological solutions and also investing in skills development. The award therefore is a clear testament that GE’s partnership based strategy for Africa is adding value to our stakeholders.”

Chairman and CEO, Jeff Immelt was also awarded Global Investment Personality of the Year during the ceremony. At the recent Africa Heads of State summit in Washington, GE announced plans to invest $2 billion in Africa by 2018 to boost infrastructure, worker skills and access to energy. Some of GE’s key projects across Africa are MOU signings with the governments of Nigeria, Ghana and Kenya to develop infrastructure projects including sustainable energy solutions, rail transportation, quality healthcare, training and capacity building.

These prestigious Ai Awards are the longest standing international investment awards that reward exceptional business practices, economic achievements and investments across Africa, and recognize the institutions and individuals improving the continent’s investment climate.

13 October, 2014

Energy sector is key to powering prosperity in sub-Saharan Africa - Report

 IEA World Energy Outlook Special Report finds that action in the energy sector could unleash an extra decade of growth

LONDON, United-Kingdom, October 13, 2014/ -- Increasing access to modern forms of energy is crucial to unlocking faster economic and social development in sub Saharan Africa, according to the International Energy Agency’s (IEA) Africa Energy Outlook a Special Report in the 2014 World Energy Outlook series. More than 620 million people in the region (two-thirds of the population) live without electricity, and nearly 730 million people rely on dangerous, inefficient forms of cooking. The use of solid biomass (mainly fuelwood and charcoal) outweighs that of all other fuels combined, and average electricity consumption per capita is not enough to power a single 50-watt light bulb continuously.

A better functioning energy sector is vital to ensuring that the citizens of sub-Saharan Africa can fulfil their aspirations,” said IEA Executive Director Maria van der Hoeven. “The energy sector is acting as a brake on development, but this can be overcome and the benefits of success are huge.”

In the IEA’s first comprehensive analysis of sub-Saharan Africa, it finds that the region’s energy resources are more than sufficient to meet the needs of its population, but that they are largely under-developed. The region accounted for almost 30% of global oil and gas discoveries made over the last five years, and it is already home to several major energy producers, including Nigeria, South Africa and Angola. It is also endowed with huge renewable energy resources, including excellent and widespread solar and hydro potential, as well as wind and geothermal.

The report finds that investment in sub-Saharan energy supply has been growing, but that two-thirds of the total since 2000 has been aimed at developing resources for export. Grid-based power generation capacity continues to fall very far short of what is needed, and half of it is located in just one country (South Africa). Insufficient and unreliable supply has resulted in large-scale ownership of costly back up generators. In the report’s central scenario, the sub-Saharan economy quadruples in size by 2040, the population nearly doubles (to over 1.75 billion) and energy demand grows by around 80%. Power generation capacity also quadruples: renewables grow strongly to account for nearly 45% of total sub-Saharan capacity, varying in scale from large hydropower dams to smaller mini- and off-grid solutions, while there is a greater use of natural gas in gas-producing countries.

Natural gas production reaches 230 billion cubic metres (bcm) in 2040, led by Nigeria (which continues to be the largest producer), and increasing output from Mozambique, Tanzania and Angola. LNG exports onto the global market triple to around 95 bcm. Oil production exceeds 6 million barrels per day (mb/d) in 2020 before falling back to 5.3 mb/d in 2040. Nigeria and Angola continue to be the largest oil producers by far, but with a host of other producers supplying smaller volumes. Sub-Saharan demand for oil products doubles to 4 mb/d in 2040, squeezing the region’s net contribution to the global oil balance. Coal supply grows by 50%, and continues to be focused on South Africa, but it is joined increasingly by Mozambique and others.

The capacity and efficiency of the sub-Saharan energy system increases, but so do the demands placed upon it, and many of the existing energy challenges are only partly overcome. In 2040, energy consumption per capita remains very low, and the widespread use of fuelwood and charcoal persists. The outlook for providing access to electricity is bittersweet: nearly one billion people gain access to electricity by 2040 but, because of rapid population growth, more than half a billion people remain without it. Sub-Saharan Africa also stands on the front line when it comes to the impacts of climate change, even though it continues to make only a small contribution to global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions.

“Economic and social development in sub-Saharan Africa hinges critically on fixing the energy sector,” said IEA Chief Economist Fatih Birol. “The payoff can be huge; with each additional dollar invested in the power sector boosting the overall economy by $15.”
In an “African Century Case”, the IEA report shows that three actions could boost the sub-Saharan economy by a further 30% in 2040, and deliver an extra decade’s worth of growth in per-capita incomes by 2040. These actions are:

•         An additional $450 billion in power sector investment, reducing power outages by half and achieving universal electricity access in urban areas.

•         Deeper regional co-operation and integration, facilitating new large-scale generation and transmission projects and enabling a further expansion in cross-border trade.

•         Better management of energy resources and revenues, adopting robust and transparent processes that allow for more effective use of oil and gas revenues.

As well as boosting economic growth, these actions bring electricity to an additional 230 million people by 2040. They result in more oil and gas projects going ahead and a higher share of the resulting government revenues being reinvested in key infrastructure. More regional electricity supply and transmission projects also advance, helping to keep down the average cost of supply. But the report warns that these actions must be accompanied by broad governance reforms if they are to put sub Saharan Africa on a more rapid path to a modern, integrated energy system for all.

10 October, 2014

CMA Approves Uchumi Right Issue

Nairobi: October 10, 2014: Uchumi Rights Issue enters the penultimate stage following approval by the Capital Markets Authority (CMA).

In a statement CMA said the Authority was satisfied that the disclosures submitted by the company complied with regulatory requirements for public offers and listings.

“Submission by Uchumi is sufficient and contained information that will enable investors make an informed decision on the Rights Issue,” the statement reads in part.

Uchumi’s Chief Executive Officer Dr. Jonathan Ciano said: “We are delighted by the seal of approval by the CMA and the NSE, I would now call upon our shareholders to exercise their Rights as we enter this new and exciting phase of our growth plans.”

The retail chain is seeking additional capital to finance its regional growth and expansion programme as it seeks to consolidate its position in regional markets.  The funds will be used to open new branches as well as refurbish local branches.

“We plan to open more branches across East Africa in a bid to competitively position our business and this requires substantial capital expenditure. We also want to be able to adequately finance working capital for our subsidiaries with a consequent growth in market share and sales volumes,” Dr. Ciano said.

The company has picked Faida Investment Bank as lead transaction adviser, Equity Bank as sponsoring broker, Hamilton Harris & Matthew Advocates as legal adviser, Ernst &Young (auditor), ICDC as the share registrar, and Hill + Knowlton Strategies as public relations and advertising consultant.

The issue opens on 10th November, 2014 and closes on 28th November, 2014.       

07 October, 2014

Kenya Ferry Explains Service disruptions

Mombasa- October 7th, 2014: Yesterday’s delays in service ferry services between Mombasa Island and the mainland were caused by unexpected rise in water tide, Kenya Ferry Services has disclosed.

“This is a natural phenomenon,” said Kenya Ferry Services Managing Director Musa Hassan Musa. “We sorry that this incidence caused some disruptions of our ferry service on the evening of Monday, Dec. 6 at about 6.00pm. It was difficult boarding since ferries floated too high. We would like to report that there were no casualties and the two ferries are back in operations.”

The incidence lead which occurred at the Likoni channel led the grounding of MV Kwale and MV Kilindini ferries at the ramp causing an interruption of services.
“This in addition to the huge number of pedestrians during this peak time jostling to cross over from Mombasa Island side to the mainland side led to delays.  We highly regret any inconvenience caused to our esteemed customers,” the MD said.

About 300,000 people and 6,000 vehicles are ferried between the island and the south coast mainland every day.

Kenya Ferry Services was established in 1989 by the Government and has played a pivotal role in linking the island to the mainland south of Mombasa. Unlike the northern side of Mombasa that is linked by bridges at Nyali, Mtwapa Kilifi and Sabaki the south coast depends solely on the ferries.
The service is operated freely for passengers as a government social obligation and motorists pay a minimal charge.


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