Angela Homsi - Visionary & Investor in Africa
Updated: Aug 9, 2019
The greatest opportunity of our time: Africa embodies a tremendous potential for both impact and profit
Africa tech is transforming the continent at a faster pace than ever before, and you have to be part of it. With 6 of the 10 fastest growing economies in the world, and a young workforce to sustain the pace over the next 3 decades, Africa presents a ripe, high value market. At Mondo holding, we believe that Fin-Tech, Agri-Tech and Clean-Tech are the right place to invest.
The world has been changing since the dawn of history, yet in recent years, it feels like the pace is somewhat quicker. With an unprecedented speed of inventions, we are witnessing new spheres taking over in a matter of years, while companies are rising faster than noticeable and, new technologies revolutionizing every aspect of our lives.
These tremendous changes bring quite a few challenges, but also, more than just a few opportunities. While traditional investment funds are still focused on financial profits, philanthropic foundations and organizations around the world are focusing on the social/environmental impact. Thus, many miss the close connection between the two, where smart investment in projects with a strong impact, is also more likely to succeed on the financial level. This gap can be filled perfectly by family offices around the world, many of whom are looking for the elusive combination of economic gains and a positive impact on society and the planet.
This is also the challenge we faced several years ago as we looked for the most suitable investment opportunity within our holding company, Mondo. After a great deal of in-depth research, we came to Africa, with the notion that smart investments in the developing continent could yield good profits combined with a positive impact on the hundreds of millions. Today, five years after we’ve established operations and began investing in the local market, we realize that the potential is far greater than we could have ever imagined. Now, we are sure that Africa represents a huge investment potential on a global scale, both for profits and drastic impact.
A huge need for innovation
Being the second-largest continent, with lands bigger than China, Europe, the US, and India combined, Africa is home to more than 1.2 billion people, with the majority of the world's population growth expected to happen across the continent, adding 1.3 billion more people by 2050. Africa is also home to an extremely large amount of challenges and needs, with over 620 million people living without access to electricity, 319 million living with no access to clean water, 66% of the sub-Saharan population remaining unbanked, and so on. We believe that the enormous and untapped market is a fertile ground for innovation, presenting tremendous opportunities for global investors. Look out there how e-payment and mobile banking are revolutionizing old-school banking and financial services, how international transfers and remittances technology is becoming seamless and frictionless, how drip-irrigation, drones and AI are increasing yields in agriculture and maximizing lands’ potential, how battery storage combined with IoT is building a new model of home and workplace, improving the lives and productivity of millions and opening up new multi-billion dollar markets.
After years of investing and supporting the African market with more than a dozen initiatives in infrastructure, agriculture, technology, media and entrepreneurship, we recently established a new fund to serve as Mondo’s investment arm. Angaza, “sunrise” in Swahili, was established in collaboration with leading international parties, and signed a collaboration agreement with Abu Dhabi Global Market who also recognized the potential in the African market and decided to join the effort. Angaza's first fund (the Africa Rwanda Innovation Fund, in collaboration with the Rwandan government and the African Development Bank) invests in local agri-tech and fin-tech ventures primarily, bridging between the emerging African market and the Middle East.
With tremendous business potential, massive needs, a young population and an exceptionally high level of innovative thinking and entrepreneurship, Africa represents the greatest opportunity of our generation. An important ingredient for success is a collaborative mindset, good local and international networks and the ability to create synergies. That is where family offices that join efforts can soon become leaders in this promising continent and enjoy economic gains alongside a significant change in the lives of hundreds of millions.