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MallforAfrica announces expansion into Kenya with new website, MallforKenya.com
PR Newswire
24 July 2015

MallforAfrica (MFA), Africa's largest online mall, announced today its expansion into Kenya with its new website, MallforKenya (MFK). The global e-commerce company will enable Kenya's 47 million residents immediate access to over 50 stores and more than 1.5 billion items.

Shoppers will now have the ability to purchase items ranging from clothing to jewelry to electronics from stores such as Macy's, Carolee, Carter's, Bebe, Zappos and Amazon. Products purchased through the MallforKenya platform will be received by customers within 4-15 business days. The same secured payment options as MallforAfrica will be available to all users.

Founded in 2011 by Nigerian tech entrepreneur Chris Folayan, MallforAfrica enables Africans to purchase products from the US and UK. Its guaranteed payment system allows consumers access to over 8.5 billion items, while ensuring payment to vendors and handling all transactional fees. MFA works with over 150 of the best retailers in the world with plans on rapidly expanding across Africa.

"As Kenya is one of the leading e-commerce capitals in the world, we are thrilled to be joining the Silicon Savannah," said CEO and founder of MallforAfrica, Chris Folayan. "Since almost two-thirds of all homes have at least one mobile phone, consumers will now have the opportunity to shop at our US and UK retail stores."

The launch of MallforKenya coincides with Chris Folayan speaking on intra-regional entrepreneurship and trade at this year's Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) on July 25 in Nairobi, Kenya.
 

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Kenya’s TV white spaces network to be expanded
IT News Africa
24 July 2015

The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), the U.S. Government’s Development Finance Institution, has signed a mandate letter to begin financing discussions with Mawingu Networks, a provider of solar-powered wireless Internet across rural Kenya.

OPIC’s President and CEO Elizabeth Littlefield is in Nairobi for the 2015 Global Entrepreneurship Summit, and signed the OPIC mandate alongside Antony Cook, Microsoft’s Head of Legal and Corporate Affairs for the Middle East and Africa, who served as a witness to the mandate between OPIC and Mawingu.

Mawingu Networks was able to establish their current operating model using an initial grant from Microsoft’s 4Afrika initiative, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), an investment from Angel Investor Jim Forster, and early funding from Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Inc.

Using a network of solar-powered “nomadic” wireless internet stations, Mawingu provides last-mile connectivity access to areas that cannot economically access the Internet. Spurred on by the promise of Mawingu’s initial pilot operations, OPIC’s consideration of a potential $4 million loan would allow a commercial expansion of a proven model to utilise existing technology of TV White Spaces (TVWS) connectivity for off-grid Internet access.

[continued in link]
 

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US govt pledges support for Kenyan wireless internet provider
IT Web Africa
24 July 2015

The US government's development finance institution, Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC),and Microsoft have signed an agreement with Kenyan wireless internet provider Mawingu Networks Ltd that will pave the way for possible funding to the tune of $4million towards the company's free Wi-Fi project.

The Project is aimed at helping people living off-grid and in rural communities across Africa access affordable Wi-Fi.

OPIC president and CEO Elizabeth Littlefield is currently in Nairobi for the 2015 Global Entrepreneur Summit, and signed the OPIC mandate alongside Antony Cook who is Microsoft's head of legal and corporate affairs for the Middle East and Africa. Cook served as a witness to the mandate between OPIC and Mawingu.

"The development potential from creative private sector organisations like Mawingu captures the spirit and promise at the heart of this week's Global Entrepreneurship Summit," said Littlefield.

[continued in link]
 

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Discussion Starter #12
SkyPower to sign historic solar energy agreement with Government of Kenya
PR Newswire
24 July 2015

North America's SkyPower, the world's largest developer and owner of utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) energy projects, is to sign a landmark agreement with the Kenyan Ministry of Energy and Petroleum for the development of 1 GW of world-class solar projects in Kenya over the next five years.

The historic US $2.2 billion agreement will be signed in Nairobi at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES).

Representatives of SkyPower will be available for media inquiries following the announcement.
 

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General Electric to launch healthcare training institute in Kenya
Daily Nation
23 July 2015

Global technology company, General Electric, will launch a healthcare training institute in Kenya at the end of this year as part of Sh1.3 billion investment in the country in the next decade.

Making the announcement Thursday ahead of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) to be held in Nairobi from July 24 – 26, in Nairobi, GE Healthcare Africa president, Farid Fezoua, said this investment is part of its new commitment to addressing some of the most critical health challenges in East Africa.

“As a cornerstone of the mega-modernisation program, GE (General Electric) will launch the new GE Healthcare Skills and Training Institute in Kenya, representing a long-term investment of at least $13 million over the next 10 years.

With specialised GE Healthcare training facilities across the globe, the centre is set to become GE’s first dedicated skills development facility in Africa when inaugurated in Nairobi later in Q4 2015 that will serve Kenya and the wider East Africa,” Mr Fezoua, said today in Nairobi.

The training institute will address critical shortage of healthcare skills especially in the counties following the implementation of the Sh38 billion medical leasing equipment, which has partly been hit by a scarcity of specialised medical personnel.

The institute will initially offer biomedical and clinical applications training courses and, at a later date, offer leadership, technical and clinical education courses. It expects to train over 1,000 healthcare professionals over the next 3 years.

Capacity building

General Electric, which has its Africa headquarters in Nairobi, was, in February this year, selected by the Kenyan government as a key technology partner in the Sh38 billion healthcare transformation plan for Kenya.

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2 US companies that have great plans for Africa. GE and Facebook.

The Power Africa initiative has GE all over it and Facebook has huge plans for its internet drones and remittances on the continent.
 

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SkyPower to sign historic solar energy agreement with Government of Kenya
PR Newswire
24 July 2015

This is really huge!
Now industrialization is very much withing reach
 

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U.S. plans investor roadshow for Africa to boost investment




The United States will launch an African investor roadshow later this year to connect entrepreneurs with potential U.S. investors as part of a push for increased trade with the continent, the U.S. commerce secretary said on Friday.

Speaking on the sidelines of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit in the Kenyan capital Nairobi, which President Barack Obama is due to address on Saturday, Penny Pritzker said the United States was seeking to address the main concern raised by African entrepreneurs: limited access to foreign capital.

"The president and our department are very focused on how to improve trade and investment between Africa and the United States. It's really top of our mind. And what we've found is that there is an enormous amount of entrepreneurial activity happening here," Pritzker told Reuters.

"It's a really important effort because everybody talks about access to capital here... We listened to the customer."

The roadshow will be launched in New York in September during the annual meeting of world leaders at the United Nations. In 2016, potential investors will travel to African countries, she said, adding that the specifics have yet been set.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta among others have been invited to participate, Pritzker said.

A wide array of African companies have started up in recent years to meet the demands of the continent's fast-growing economy and to add value to the raw goods it has traditionally shipped abroad.

But access to capital is a common complaint, in part because commercial banks require very high interest rates.

The Nairobi summit, as well as the African Leaders Summit held in Washington last August, were important showcases for the continent's significant business potential, and were helping to counter negative perceptions of African business, Pritzker said.

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