- Despite Recession, Business is Good in Nigeria, Says US Firm
An emerging high-tech mobile phone manufacturing giant, Akyumen Technologies Corporation has given the Nigerian business environment a clean bill of health inspite of the current economic challenges facing the country.
The United States-based company which is at present exploring ways to establish base in the country, disagreed with the notion that foreign firms are scared of coming to invest in Nigeria due to the economic down-turn.
Rather, the 32-year old Chief Executive described those pulling out or those who are afraid to operate in the country as not being fair or probably may have been in the business of shortchanging Nigerians.
Speaking on the company’s plan to introduce various ranges of telecommunication products into the country’s market, the Chief Executive of the firm, Aasim Saied said some of the devices can be used to improve learning and to empower the young ones with useful skills.
“We want to create jobs in any country that we go and we also want to train personnel in the highest possible customer service expertise so that they can be at home with the technology we offer.”
He said the firm will introduce 50 per cent subsidy for students in selected primary and secondary schools in the country as part of its social responsibility to support education which they benefited from.
He said currently Akyumen Technologies is partnering 25 universities and colleges all over the world in the use of its innovative devices for academic exploits. Akyumen Technologies started up in the state of California, United States of America.
“We are a company with great commitment to our social responsibility. In addition to creation of jobs, we will also want to encourage a lot of start-up businesses. One of the things that we intend to do is to install our computers in educational institutions in the country.”
We are in the process of setting up offices in Nigeria, either Lagos or Abuja.
“In line with our desire to establish base in Africa, we are going to set up our headquarters in either Lagos or Abuja and arrangements to that effect is being perfected,” he said.
On the issue of local content, he said the company is going create a lot of local jobs by allowing more local content in the devices. According to him, although most of the components of the mobile phones and other devices are at the moment going to be imported, but that there will a lot of local inputs in area of content creation for the computer applications and software development.
Speaking on the possibility of partnering various sectors of the economy, he said there are huge opportunities to be tapped in collaborating with Nollywood film industry. He said Akyumen has a lot to offer to the local film industry in the area of application of latest technology to improve the content and knowledge of the professionals in the industry.
Unlike the practice where some foreign companies try to turn Nigeria into a dumping ground for their finished goods, the US firm said they are here to stay in the country to do more business and also to empower more entrepreneurial development.
Unlocking Investments into Africa’s Renewable Energy Market
The African Energy Guarantee Facility (AEGF) is launching a virtual roadshow of free webinars allowing a deeper understanding of risk issues for renewable energy projects on the continent, and conversations around risk mitigation solutions. The first webinar will take place on Thursday, 23 September from 14:30-16:00 hrs. EAT.
The session will be oriented on how to get more energy projects from the drawing board to the grid. While the energy demand in African economies is expected to nearly double by 2040, and although the potential for renewable energy is 1,000 times larger than the demand, only 2GW out of almost 180GW of this new renewable power were added on the African continent.
Clearly not good enough! To improve the situation within the next two decades, new solutions need to be implemented urgently. De-risking and promoting private sector investments will play a crucial part of it.
In this 90-min interactive session, AEGF partners: the European Investment Bank (EIB), KfW Development Bank, Munich Re and the African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) will share their experience and provide valuable insights on how they were able to come together and design practical solutions for investors and financiers of green energy projects in Africa aligned with SDG7 objectives.
Across Africa, the complexity of renewable energy projects and their long tenors hold back crucial energy investment. Tailored to the specific needs and risk profiles of sustainable energy projects, AEGF will tackle the investment challenge by providing underwriting expertise and capacity tailored to market needs.
The AEGF will significantly boost private investment in sustainable energy projects, both expanding access to clean energy and contribute to achieving UN Sustainable Development Goals. The scheme supports new private sector investment in eligible renewable energy, energy efficiency and energy access projects in sub-Saharan Africa.
Shell Signs Agreement To Sell Permian Interest For $9.5B to ConocoPhillips
Shell Enterprises LLC, a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell plc, has reached an agreement for the sale of its Permian business to ConocoPhillips, a leading shales developer in the basin, for $9.5 billion in cash. The transaction will transfer all of Shell’s interest in the Permian to ConocoPhillips, subject to regulatory approvals.
“After reviewing multiple strategies and portfolio options for our Permian assets, this transaction with ConocoPhillips emerged as a very compelling value proposition,” said Wael Sawan, Upstream Director. “This decision once again reflects our focus on value over volumes as well as disciplined stewardship of capital. This transaction, made possible by the Permian team’s outstanding operational performance, provides excellent value to our shareholders through accelerating cash delivery and additional distributions.”
Shell’s Upstream business plays a critical role in the Powering Progress strategy through a more focused, competitive and resilient portfolio that provides the energy the world needs today whilst funding shareholder distributions as well as the energy transition.
The cash proceeds from this transaction will be used to fund $7 billion in additional shareholder distributions after closing, with the remainder used for further strengthening of the balance sheet. These distributions will be in addition to our shareholder distributions in the range of 20-30 percent of cash flow from operations. The effective date of the transaction is July 1, 2021 with closing expected in Q4 2021.
Shell has been providing energy to U.S. customers for more than 100 years and plans to remain an energy leader in the country for decades to come.
Oil Gains 1 Percent on Possible Tight Supply
Oil prices rose on Tuesday as analysts pointed to signs of U.S. supply tightness, ending days of losses as global markets remain haunted by the potential impact on China’s economy of a crisis at heavily indebted property group China Evergrande.
Brent crude gained 95 cents or 1.3% to $74.87 a barrel by 0645 GMT, having fallen by almost 2% on Monday. The contract for West Texas Intermediate (WTI) , which expires later on Tuesday, was up 91 cents or 1.3% at $71.20 after dropping 2.3% in the previous session.
Global utilities are switching to fuel oil due to rising gas and coal prices, and lingering outages from the Gulf of Mexico after Hurricane Ada that imply less supply is available, ANZ analysts said.
“While slowing Chinese economic growth and uncertainty around the (U.S.) Fed’s tapering timetable weighed on market sentiment, other developments still point to higher oil prices,” ANZ Research said in a note.
Still, investors across financial assets have been rocked by the fallout from heavily indebted Evergrande (3333.HK) and the threat of a wider market shakeout in the longer term.
“Evergrande’s woes are threatening the outlook for the world’s second-largest economy and making some investors question China’s growth outlook and whether it is safe to invest there,” said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at OANDA.
While that view of the state of China’s economy is weighing on markets, the U.S. Federal Reserve is also expected to start tightening monetary policy – likely to make investors warier of riskier assets such as oil.
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