Is Covid-19 accelerating Cameroon’s digital transformation?

August 24, 2020

Cameroon’s telecommunications sector has made significant advances in recent years. In support of the country’s goal of ‘economic emergence’ by 2035, the government introduced new telecommunications and e-strategy policies in 2016, which have resulted in significant improvements to the country’s digital infrastructure. Deployment of fibre-optic cables now covering over 90% of the country has dramatically […]

DILIGENCIA REACHES THE FINALS OF THE PRESTIGIOUS LLOYDS BANK NATIONAL BUSINESS AWARDS

August 14, 2020

Visit www.nationalbusinessawards.co.uk for the full shortlist  Diligencia, a specialist information provider, focused on company data within the Middle East and Africa, has been shortlisted for the Data Excellence Award at the prestigious 2020 Lloyds Bank National Business Awards. Previous winners include fitness sensation Joe Wicks, Timpson CEO James Timpson OBE, DPD UK, Hotel Chocolat, dementia newspaper Daily Sparkle and online fast fashion success story Missguided.  Nouri […]

Mining – a cornerstone of the Togolese economy

July 29, 2020

Togo’s significant gold, iron ore and uranium deposits as well as an abundance of other minerals such as phosphate, limestone, and marble are attracting both domestic and international investment interest.  Current estimates suggest that the mining industry accounts for over 20% of Togo’s export earnings. In recent years however the country’s mining sector has encountered […]

Cameroon’s banking sector – weathering the storms of Covid-19 and low oil prices

July 22, 2020

The size of Cameroon’s economy and its central location in the African continent make it an influential country in the Central Africa Economic and Monetary Community (CEMAC). Similarly, Cameroon’s banking industry tends to take a leading role at the Bank of Central Africa States (BEAC), which functions as the country’s apex monetary authority, as well […]

Unitel, Sonangol and Angola’s privatisation programme – disconnected?

July 13, 2020

One of the key objectives of the Angolan privatisation programme ‘PROPRIV’ set in motion by President Joao Lourenco, was to privatise Angola’s dominant mobile phone operator Unitel, which currently controls over 80% of Angola’s mobile market.¹ In 2019 key stakeholders signalled that the company would be listed on the Angola Stock Exchange and international providers […]

Covid-19 and the coming of age of e-commerce in the MENA region

July 6, 2020

As Covid-19 continues to upend social norms and business models around the globe, the virus has forced different regions and sectors to adapt to a changing way of life.  In the second of a series of blogs, we look at how changes in consumer behaviour are impacting the retail sector in the MENA region. We’re […]

Togo’s agricultural sector a magnet for overseas investors

June 9, 2020

The attractiveness of Togo as a destination for foreign investment has improved dramatically in recent years, thanks to its government’s efforts to improve infrastructure and cut red tape for businesses; according to the 2020 World Bank’s most improved place to do business, Togo now ranks first in the African continent.  Enjoying a central strategic location, […]

Effective collaboration – the UAE’s response to the Covid-19 crisis

June 3, 2020

The UAE has been widely lauded for its response to the Covid-19 crisis, both in terms of its actions domestically and in how it has provided international support to other affected countries.  That the UAE has been relatively lightly affected by the virus (258 deaths to date as at the time of writing) is remarkable given its role as a regional hub economy, and its housing the world’s third busiest airport in Dubai.  Aside from the economic stimulus measures that many governments […]

LEIs and their value to regulatory compliance

May 19, 2020

Avid followers of the GLEIF website will have observed that the regulatory net is slowly but surely tightening on entities’ use of a Legal Entity Identifier  (LEI) to settle cross-border financial transactions, to register overseas affiliates, and to enable transparent supervision by regulatory authorities.  Established in 2012, the 20-character, alpha-numeric code is rapidly being adopted by entities worldwide not only to facilitate […]

Ultimate beneficial ownership in the UAE

May 4, 2020

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has just published its assessment of the UAE’s efforts to implement anti-money laundering and counter terrorism financing measures (AML/CTF). One of the 11 key areas rated in their report was the identification of Ultimate Beneficial Ownership (UBO) information. FATF identified transparency around UBOs as a major concern and rated […]

The IT Market – Saudi Arabia

March 2, 2020

The IT market in Saudi Arabia is expected to reach SAR 48 billion by 2021, driven by initiatives focusing on SMEs, citizen services e-commerce security and smart cities. The government continues to inject significant investments into technology to promote the digital transformation initiatives of the National Transformation Program in support of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030. […]

Leopoldino Fragoso do Nascimento, aka “General Dino”

February 4, 2020

Last Friday, 31 January 2020, the Provincial Court of Luanda in Angola issued a preventive seizure over some of the assets of Leopoldino Fragoso do Nascimento, aka “General Dino”, a key member of the “Futungo” or inner circle of former president José Eduardo dos Santos. An official announcement by the Attorney General on action against […]

Identity crisis? LEIs and their role in promoting clarity and compliance

February 4, 2020

The first step in any transaction or compliance process is to identify the entity that is your counterparty. Relying on entity names alone is too ambiguous, particularly when you consider the variables that are generated by similar names, transliterations and simple human error. Similarly, while most company registries have a unique company registration number, each […]

BIG BUSINESS IN UGANDA

January 20, 2020

In 1908, Winston Churchill called Uganda “the pearl of Africa” in his book ‘My African Journey’, after visiting the country in 1907. Located in central-east Africa on the shores of Lake Victoria, Uganda is blessed with abundant resources, incredible biodiversity and varied geography spanning from snow-capped mountains to tropical rainforest. The African Development Bank (AFDB) […]

ANGOLA: TOMORROW’S #1 DIAMOND PRODUCER?

January 7, 2020

Angola is the fifth largest diamond producer in the world and the third biggest in Africa. With diamond reserves estimated at 180 million carats, Angola could be on track to become the top producer and the government is putting plans in place to get there. 1. In a bid to fully reform the country’s diamond […]

Saudi Aramco: where ambition meets clarity – Diligencia’s year in review

December 17, 2019

As I write, financial newspapers are leading with the news that Saudi Aramco has on the second day of public trading briefly achieved a valuation of US$2 trillion. This is the culmination of a two-year story since the IPO announcement first prompted a frenzy of interest from international banks to world leaders, all pitching for […]

SAYARI LABS AND DILIGENCIA ANNOUNCE STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP

December 2, 2019

Sayari Labs – the leading provider of beneficial ownership and financial intelligence in emerging, frontier, and offshore jurisdictions – has recently partnered with Diligencia Group, a specialist information provider, focused on company data within the Middle East and Africa (MEA). Financial institutions, multinational corporations, and providers of risk mitigation services are facing unprecedented pressure as […]

BOTSWANA’S RICH AND POWERFUL

November 25, 2019

The Kalahari Desert, a large semi-arid savannah, covers 70% of Botswana. It is, therefore, no surprise that water is such a valued commodity. In fact, Botswana’s currency is called the Pula which translates to rain in Setswana. Having enjoyed sub-Saharan Africa’s fastest economic growth for much of the last century, this landlocked country has positioned […]

Technology-driven growth takes centre stage in the GCC

November 11, 2019

Digital technologies are disrupting economies globally and the GCC is no exception. According to Mergermarket, there were approximately 40 technology-related M&A transactions in the region between 2015 and 2017, focused on software, internet, telecoms and online commerce. Here we look at 3 Gulf countries and how they compare in their approach to embracing advances in […]

WHO’S WHO IN NIGERIA

October 29, 2019

Each year Forbes ranks the world based on its wealthiest people. In this blog, we take a closer look at the most prosperous people in Nigeria and their business connections. #1: Aliko Dangote, 61 Dangote Industries Ltd (Dangote Group) chairman, Aliko Dangote, has retained his position as the richest man in Nigeria, despite losing almost […]