Looters Walking Free Undermine Ramaphosa’s Anti-Graft Pledge

Looters Walking Free Undermine Ramaphosa’s Anti-Graft Pledge

JOHANNESBURG (Capital Markets in Africa) – South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has pledged that those responsible for plundering taxpayer funds during his predecessor Jacob Zuma’s rule will face prosecution. Investors and the public at large will still need convincing. More than 500 billion rand ($34 billion) may have been stolen during Zuma’s nine-year tenure, and “some people” say the figure could exceed 1 trillion rand, Ramaphosa told a conference hosted by the Financial Times in London on Monday….

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Brexit Will Only Speed Up the Decline of Brand Britannia

Brexit Will Only Speed Up the Decline of Brand Britannia

LONDON (Capital Markets in Africa) – The storied names of British industry and commerce haven’t had it easy in the past few years, and they aren’t going to be helped by the divorce from the EU. Once upon a time, Brand Britannia was the poshest of soft powers. Many of the names in its pantheon continue to glow with prestige if not profit, including Rolls-Royce, British Airways, and Burberry. But others have faltered or fallen. Thomas Cook…

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Sophos Becomes Latest U.K. Tech Target in $3.8 Billion Deal

Sophos Becomes Latest U.K. Tech Target in $3.8 Billion Deal

LONDON (Capital Markets in Africa) – Private equity firm Thoma Bravo agreed to buy Sophos Group Plc for $3.8 billion, taking the British cybersecurity firm private in the biggest takeover of a U.K. technology firm this year. Thoma Bravo will pay $7.40 a share in cash, or 583 pence per share, representing a premium of 37.1% to its last closing price, the buyout firm said in a statement Monday. Shares jumped as much as 38% in London on Monday…

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Johnson Stumbles in Bid for Brexit Deal as EU Demands Answers

Johnson Stumbles in Bid for Brexit Deal as EU Demands Answers

LONDON (Capital Markets in Africa) – Boris Johnson’s attempt to secure a Brexit deal ran into trouble after the European Union warned the talks were still a long way from a breakthrough and the British prime minister’s political allies distanced themselves from his plans. The pound fell. After a weekend of intensive negotiations in Brussels, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, told a meeting of envoys on Sunday that the U.K.’s proposals for breaking the deadlock over…

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U.K. Business Seeks More Carrot, Less Stick From Labour Party

U.K. Business Seeks More Carrot, Less Stick From Labour Party

LONDON (Capital Markets in Africa) – Businesses are trying to persuade the opposition Labour Party to soften its plans to crimp profits, empower workers and take privately-held assets under state control as the U.K. approaches an unpredictable general election. After a string of nationalization pledges, party leader Jeremy Corbyn added another last month when he said a Labour government would set up a publicly-owned company to manufacture generic versions of patented medicines, cutting the profitability of pharmaceutical…

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New IMF Chief Sees ‘Serious Risk’ Global Slowdown to Spread

New IMF Chief Sees ‘Serious Risk’ Global Slowdown to Spread

LAGOS (Capital Markets in Africa) – Kristalina Georgieva, in her first major address as head of the International Monetary Fund, painted a downbeat picture of the world economy and said a more severe slowdown could require governments to coordinate fiscal-stimulus measures. In a speech that sets the tone for next week’s annual meeting of the IMF, Georgieva said the fund will cut its growth forecast for both 2019 and 2020 in its next World Economic…

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For Billionaire Glenn Dubin, Rough Run Keeps Getting Rougher

For Billionaire Glenn Dubin, Rough Run Keeps Getting Rougher

NEW YORK (Capital Markets in Africa) – These are uneasy times for hedge fund billionaire Glenn Dubin. His latest investment firm, the $1 billion Engineers Gate, has struggled to keep up with the market since its founding in 2014. Then in August, a bombshell hit: the money manager and his wife were very publicly drawn into the scandal surrounding Jeffrey Epstein. Now, a toxic mix of lackluster investment returns, a restive key client and unwanted notoriety has…

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