ON THE COVER
After a characteristically bold attempt last year to acquire Barclays Africa, a firm which he was instrumental in developing, Bob Diamond is even more determined to build his own pan-African bank at Atlas Mara. The London-listed African banking platform he co-founded four years ago has had its setbacks, but thanks to new funding and a bigger stake in its flagship Nigerian investment, another former Barclays asset, Diamond sees plenty of opportunities ahead.
In a sweeping interview with Euromoney Africa, Ecobank’s CEO makes the case for pan-African banking and says technological innovation will finally make that business model thrive.
ALSO IN THIS ISSUE
Following Mozambique's default, is it time to reassess which other African Eurobond issuers might follow suit – and what options are open to issuers – given deteriorating finances and rising global interest rates?
As Denny Kalyalya’s first term as Zambia’s central bank governor draws to a close, he reflects on the need for IMF support, the currency and debt crisis that engulfed the country two years ago and his efforts to deliver a recovery for the long term.
Rwanda is one of the most competitive economies in Africa, thanks to reforms and an open-door approach to foreign investment. Its banking landscape has been transformed and bankers are keen to turn Kigali into a financial centre serving the region, though they admit it has a long way to go.
State Bank of Mauritius aims to start a pan-African bank from scratch, as its home country turns its economy towards the continent. Little has been achieved to date, but SBM’s chairman is focused and confident.
Currency devaluations and swings in commodity prices have taken their toll on many a private equity investment in Africa in recent years, particularly for those who invested at the height of the Africa bull market between 2005 and 2013. These days, sponsors are picking their targets carefully, with a focus on domestic consumers and non-commodity exporters.
It’s goodbye cash, hello mobile wallets and digital payments, as Egypt uses financial technology to streamline payroll, keep money in the financial system and improve tax collection.
It is almost 50 years since Euromoney was born with the wholesale international capital markets, to chronicle their evolution and that of the institutions that serve them. Today, the growth of banking and finance is now arguably at its most exciting, most important – and least exposed – in Africa.