Sudanese Billionaire Mo Ibrahim Calls American Businesses ‘Misinformed’

Sudanese Billionaire Mo Ibrahim Calls American Businesses ‘Misinformed’

ENTERPRISE54 – Tuesday, during the ongoing US-Africa Business Summit initiated by president Barack Obama to revamp trade relations with Africa, Celtel Founder and Sudanese billionaire Mo Ibrahim called the American business community “misinformed” on the basis of its widespread ignorance of the continent’s business potential. “I’m actually a little bit amazed that all those Africans

ENTERPRISE54 – Tuesday, during the ongoing US-Africa Business Summit initiated by president Barack Obama to revamp trade relations with Africa, Celtel Founder and Sudanese billionaire Mo Ibrahim called the American business community “misinformed” on the basis of its widespread ignorance of the continent’s business potential.

“I’m actually a little bit amazed that all those Africans I met on the plane … are coming all the way here to America to tell the very smart, well-informed American business people that ‘guys, you know what, there is a good opportunity in Africa’,” the malaymailonline quoted him as saying.

“Why do we need to come and inform these misinformed American businesses? You know, you guys invented Google. Use it please,” he added.

The 68-year old telecoms tycoon is one of Africa’s leading voice on empowerment and leadership. He minced no words and further explained that the ubiquitous Chinese didn’t need grand summits to spot opportunities on the last frontier.

“None of us went to Brazil, or to Asia or to China to tell them, look, come and invest in Africa. They found out themselves and they come and invest. That’s how basic business people behave,” he emphasized.

However, during his speech, he was apprehensive about the much-touted publicity of Africa’s sudden rise.
“I’m uncomfortable, frankly, with the hype about Africa. We went from one extreme … to, like, Africa now is the best thing after sliced bread,” he said.

Mo Ibrahim founded Celtel, which had over 24 million mobile phone subscribers in 14 African countries when he sold it in 2005 for $3.4 billion.

In 2007 he initiated the Mo Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership, which awards a $5 million initial payment, and a $200,000 annual payment for life to African heads of state who deliver security, health, education and economic development to their constituents and democratically transfer power to their successors. Dr Ibrahim has pledged to give at least half of his wealth to charity by joining the The Giving Pledge.

 

 

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Adegoke Oyeniyi
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  • Nasir Muhammad
    August 7, 2014, 6:19 pm

    The comment from Mo Ibrahim is well taken, in that Americans can be behind the curve on somethings, but, on this issue I believe it was part American domestic politics as well as marking an approach vis-ά-vie our relationship torward the Chinese.

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