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Forbes Africa

Forbes Africa February 2020

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Forbes Africa is the drama critic to business in Africa. The magazine helps readers connect the dots, form patterns and see beyond the obvious, giving them a completely different perspective. In doing this, it delivers sharp, in-depth and engaging stories by looking at global and domestic issues from an African prism.

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South Africa
ABN Publishing Pty Ltd (trading as Forbes Africa)
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6 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
creating the future of food

ENTREPRENEURSHIP IS NOT FOR THE FAINT- hearted, or more crudely, the chicken-livered. In my two years editing FORBES AFRICA, the voice of entrepreneurial capitalism, I have said it in many ways on these pages, in my own words, and through the stories of the illustrious and the industrious, who have floundered and failed, time and again, before hard-earned, eventual success. I am yet to try it myself, but every January, fresh off my trip back home over the holidays in India, where my mother lives and owns agricultural land, I hark back to the long, hard days I spend under the scorching sun while there, getting my hands dirty and pretending to be the farmer I am clearly not. One of the episodes I recall when I messed up was cramming coconuts…

4 min.
resolutions to leave the world in a better shape

The start of each year is always predicated on resolutions to set goals for ourselves. I was in Delhi this New Year’s Eve and we experienced a winter like never before; statisticians said it was the coldest in the last 100 years. The biting cold, along with equally remorseful news from all over the world, made me reflect on things that are going to impact us in the coming decades. A lot of changes are in the works; these are going to be caused by technology, economic rebalancing, political ambition and realignments. Elections in the US, Sino-US trade, the impact of Brexit and the continuous uncertainty in the Middle East, including Iran, will keep the pressure cooker testing its limits. Since humans are fickle, their needs unquantifiable and rationale questionable (at…

7 min.
brief 360

SOUTH AFRICA SET FOR RAFA-FEDERER SPECTACLE “Roger as a tour guide – that will be fun.”– Rafael Nadal Tennis fans are in for a thrilling treat as 20-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer prepares to descend on African soil. The Roger Federer Foundation will be hosting the ‘Match In Africa’, an exhibition match, in Cape Town, South Africa on February 7. Federer will bring with him 19-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal. In a statement, the Foundation says: “The match will be played to support children’s education in Africa. The match will be the 6th edition of this event, but the first to be played in Africa.” Said Federer: “This match in Africa is a dream come true. I will play in my mother’s home country against my toughest rival and friend Rafa Nadal.…

4 min.
a new dawn?

FIFTY SIX YEARS AFTER ITS founding, the organization created to unite Africa’s economies has firmly fixed its gaze on economic integration, this time driven by its private sector. At the 30th anniversary of the Africa Industrialization Day in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, last November, the African Union’s Trade Commissioner Albert Muchanga was unequivocal about the agents of industrialization the continent seeks and the role they will play in the advancement of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). “The key driver of industrialization will be the private sector,’’ Muchanga said as he welcomed participants from the private sector, donor agencies and governments to the Africa Industrialization Week which is now an annual event bringing together all stakeholders in the drive to increase intra-African trade. “Business should welcome this.’’ Since its formation as the Organization…

5 min.
cattle, crops and killings

IN 2018, DANIEL JAMES WAS seated in St. Augustine’s Church in the rural middle belt of Nigeria. By his side in the congregation were his two sisters, and a handful of family members. They were mourning the demise of his father, Paul James, a 70-year-old farmer who was shot in the head in the dead of night when Fulani herdsmen attacked his village. “We woke up in the middle of the night to gun shots. They entered my father’s hut and we heard multiple shots and we immediately hid under the bed and waited until they left the area,” says James. His father fought for his life in intensive care for two weeks before succumbing to his wounds. The clashes between armed herdsmen and farmers in Nigeria have been escalating for years. The increasingly violent…

7 min.
‘cocoa farmers who have never tasted chocolate in their lives’

BEFORE IT REACHED THE fashionable parlors of early modern Europe, where it was imbibed as an expensive accessory to gossip and gambling, chocolate had already enjoyed a long, intoxicating life. The aphrodisiac beverage cacahuatl, favored by ancient South American cultures such as the Mayans and the Aztecs, was brewed, with chillies, from the cacaobean, a local currency so valuable it quickly caught the avaricious attention of the Spanish Conquistadors. The rest is history – and a narrative tainted with the bitterness of greed and exploitation. But there are signs at last that this story may be headed to a sweeter ending. The World Cocoa Foundation has calculated that 4.5 million tons of cocoa beans are now consumed annually: as cocoa butter, widely used in cosmetics as well as chocolate products; cocoa…