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Nigeria Ranks 1st in Internet Usage in Africa

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Internet Usage
  • Nigeria Ranks 1st in Internet Usage in Africa

Digitalfacts, a publication produced by digitXplus, has ranked Nigeria number one in internet usage in Africa, with 63 million people from the world’s most populous black nation and Africa largest economy reported to have access to the internet.

According to the publication, fifteen countries have the highest number of internet users in the world, while China (632 million), USA (269 m) and India (198m) top the list, Nigeria was ranked 9th globally after Germany 68 million users, and a position above the United Kingdom 57 million users.

The data also showed that Nigeria has maintained an upward trend since 2011 — when there were just 35.7 million internet users, before the number jumped to 42.8 million; 51.8m; 57.7m and 63.2m in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 respectively.

Accordingly, the total number of internet users worldwide rose 8.9 percent from 2.9 billion recorded in 2014 to 3.2 billion by December 2015.

However, the report attributed Nigeria steady increase in internet users to a broad mobile usage, made possible by the Nigerian telecom sector, one of the largest in Africa.

“Rapid expansion of the wireless networks and competition has driven down voice tariffs and made basic cellular services affordable, especially for the poorer rural consumers,” said Digitalfacts.

It should be recalled that PayPal Inc. ranked Nigeria 3rd highest mobile shopper worldwide in July, with N128.1 billion ($610 million) spent in 2015 via PayPal, and on target for about N172 billion ($819 million) in 2016.

Also, early this year, Facebook Inc. affirmed Nigeria as its largest Market in Africa, with 16 million Nigerians reportedly visiting Facebook every month through their mobile devices, edging out South Africa 12 million monthly users.

“The future of businesses in the world’s most populous black nation will be determined by how mobile friendly they are,” said Samed Olukoya, a foreign exchange research analyst at Investors King Ltd. “The earlier businesses integrate mobile friendly platform/application to their core business model, the better users experience and their retention power,” he added.

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Businessinsider, Nasdaq, Entrepreneur.com, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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Musk’s SpaceX Poised for $200 Billion Valuation in New Share Sale

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SpaceX- Investors King

Elon Musk’s SpaceX has initiated discussions about a new tender offer for existing shares, potentially valuing the private space exploration company at an astonishing $200 billion.

According to sources familiar with the matter, the upcoming tender offer is set to begin in June, providing an opportunity for employees and insiders to sell shares at a premium price.

SpaceX, formally known as Space Exploration Technologies Corp., is reportedly weighing a share price of $108 to $110 apiece for the tender offer.

Although the final terms have yet to be determined, this move would mark a significant increase from the company’s most recent valuation of $180 billion, achieved through a similar tender offer.

The potential $200 billion valuation would place SpaceX among the elite ranks of the world’s largest companies by market capitalization, rivalling giants in various industries.

This valuation underscores the company’s impressive growth trajectory and its pivotal role in advancing space technology and exploration.

“We do liquidity rounds for employees and investors every ~6 months,” Musk stated in a recent post on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.

He emphasized that SpaceX does not require additional capital at this time and that the company plans to buy back shares during the tender offer.

The planned tender offer will enable employees and early investors to liquidate some of their holdings, providing them with an opportunity to capitalize on the company’s substantial growth.

This liquidity event is part of SpaceX’s broader strategy to offer periodic opportunities for stakeholders to monetize their investments, thereby maintaining morale and financial flexibility within the organization.

SpaceX’s ascent to a $200 billion valuation reflects its successful execution of multiple high-profile projects, including the development and deployment of the Starlink satellite internet constellation and the ongoing missions involving the Falcon and Starship rockets.

These ventures have not only garnered significant revenue but have also positioned SpaceX as a leader in the burgeoning commercial space sector.

The company’s rapid progress has also been bolstered by lucrative contracts with NASA and the U.S. Department of Defense, further solidifying its status as a critical player in both governmental and private space initiatives.

While representatives for SpaceX have yet to comment on the tender offer discussions, industry analysts speculate that the high interest from both insider sellers and potential buyers could drive robust participation in the upcoming share sale.

The final size of the tender offer may be adjusted based on this interest, ensuring optimal outcomes for all parties involved.

As SpaceX continues to push the boundaries of space exploration and technology, its rising valuation is a testament to the visionary leadership of Elon Musk and the dedicated efforts of the company’s workforce.

The forthcoming tender offer, with its potential $200 billion valuation, marks another significant milestone in SpaceX’s journey toward revolutionizing space travel and expanding humanity’s reach beyond Earth.

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Airtel Africa’s Subsidiary Repays $550m Bond, Achieves Zero-Debt Position

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Airtel Financial Results - Investors King

Telecommunications giant Airtel Africa announced that its subsidiary, Bharti Airtel International (Netherlands) B.V., has successfully repaid its $550 million bond in full.

This achievement marks a pivotal moment for the company, as it now stands in a zero-debt position at the holding company level.

The news came through a corporate filing with the Nigerian Exchange Limited, signed by Airtel Africa’s Group Company Secretary, Simon O’Hara, on Monday.

The $550 million bond, known as the 5.35% Guaranteed Senior Notes, matured on Monday, and the repayment was made entirely from cash reserves at the holding company.

Airtel Africa highlighted that this repayment is part of its strategic initiative to reduce external foreign currency debt. Back in June 2019, during its IPO, the group had a substantial $2.719 billion of external debt at the holding company level.

This indebtedness exposed the company to currency fluctuations and necessitated the upstreaming of funds to cover interest costs and principal repayments.

Through consistent execution of its strategy focused on strong free cash flow generation and successful upstreaming efforts, Airtel Africa has been steadily reducing its holding company debt over the past few years.

The culmination of these efforts is the achievement of a zero-debt position at the holding company level.

The company’s current leverage and capital structure underscore the success of its capital allocation strategy since its IPO.

Airtel Africa intends to continue reducing foreign currency debt obligations across its operating companies (OpCos) in line with this strategy.

Despite this significant financial feat, Airtel Africa faced challenges in its financial performance, primarily due to foreign exchange headwinds.

The company reported a $89 million loss after tax, translating to a $549 million loss net of tax.

This loss was mainly attributed to the devaluation of the naira in June 2023 and the devaluation of the Malawian kwacha in November 2023.

The devaluation of the naira had a profound impact on Airtel Africa’s financial results, resulting in derivative and foreign exchange losses amounting to $1.07 million during the year.

However, despite these challenges, the company’s board proposed a final dividend of $3.27 per share for the year ending March 2024.

Airtel Africa’s successful repayment of its $550 million bond and attainment of a zero-debt position underscore its commitment to financial prudence and strategic debt management.

The company’s resilience in navigating foreign exchange fluctuations reflects its robust operational framework and sets a positive trajectory for its future financial performance.

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Fintech

Flutterwave Hit by Another Security Breach, Billions of Naira Diverted to Multiple Bank Accounts

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Flutterwave - Investors King

In another blow to the financial technology sector, Flutterwave, a prominent player in Nigeria’s digital payment landscape, has been rocked by yet another security breach, resulting in the diversion of billions of naira to multiple undisclosed bank accounts.

This incident is the latest in a series of setbacks for the fintech company, raising concerns about the integrity of its systems and the safety of customer funds.

According to insider sources familiar with the matter, unauthorized transactions amounting to approximately ₦11 billion ($7 million) were illicitly transferred to several accounts during April 2024.

However, other sources suggest the figure could be as high as ₦20 billion ($13.5 million), underscoring the magnitude of the breach.

Flutterwave, responding to inquiries regarding the breach, acknowledged the unauthorized activities but stopped short of confirming the exact amount involved.

In a statement to TechCabal, the company assured the public that no customer funds were lost or compromised, and the confidentiality of customer data remained intact.

The modus operandi of the perpetrators involved transferring the stolen funds to various accounts across five financial institutions over a span of four days.

To evade detection, the transactions were carefully orchestrated to stay below thresholds that trigger fraud checks, highlighting the sophistication of the operation.

Law enforcement agencies have been notified of the breach, and investigations are underway to apprehend those responsible.

Flutterwave has also initiated measures to mitigate the impact of the incident, including temporarily restricting the accounts implicated in the unauthorized transfers.

Industry analysts note that this is not the first time Flutterwave has fallen victim to such security breaches. Over the past fourteen months, the company has grappled with multiple incidents of unauthorized transfers, raising serious concerns about the adequacy of its cybersecurity measures.

In October 2023, Flutterwave reported unauthorized transactions totaling ₦19 billion ($24 million), affecting thousands of account holders across 35 banks and financial institutions.

Subsequent breaches in March and February 2023 saw millions of naira diverted to numerous bank accounts, further exposing vulnerabilities in the company’s systems.

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