Thursday, 2 February 2023

PM — Scrap the company retreats

TL;DR

WHAT WE’RE TRACKING TONIGHT

Good afternoon, ladies and gents, and a very happy THURSDAY to us all. It’s a busy end to the week here at home, where the news cycle is being led primarily by the macro view — particularly as all eyes are on the central bank for interest rate day.

THE BIG STORY TODAY

Egypt’s current account deficit narrowed by 20.2% to USD 3.2 bn in 1Q 2022-23, according to central bank figures (pdf). The improved performance was attributed primarily to higher tourism and Suez Canal receipts, coupled with oil and non-oil exports and a jump in FDI. The balance of payments recorded an overall surplus of USD 523.5 mn during the July-September period, according to the central bank.

DRIVING THE CONVERSATION LATER TODAY- The Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) is meeting today to review interest rates for the first time in 2023. Analysts we polled earlier this week forecast the MPC to hike rates by 100-200 bps. The median estimate in a Reuters poll is also for a 150-bps hike.

The opposing view: The MPC could decide to take a breather today and leave rates on hold to consider the “time lag effect” and allow for the 800 bps hikes it enacted in 2022 to have an impact, Faisal Islamic Brokerage’s head of research Hesham El Shebeini said in a research note. The CBE might also decide to adopt a wait-and-see approach to maintain a balance between tamping down inflation and supporting positive economic growth, El Shebeini suggests.

THE BIG STORY ABROAD

Adani losses exceed USD 100 bn: Gautam Adani’s conglomerate Adani Group has lost more than USD 100 bn in market value in just a week following allegations of fraud and stock market manipulation by short-seller Hindenburg Research. The claims ultimately led Adani Enterprises to scrap its planned secondary offering yesterday despite the share sale being fully subscribed with support from UAE investors. Concerned lenders are refusing to accept Adani Group securities as collateral for client trades, as Adani Group shares plummet on the Indian stock exchange. India’s government is also being pulled into the vortex, with Indian members of parliament questioning the close relationship between Adani’s interests and the nation’s growth plans. The Modi government is yet to make any comments about the situation, although Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Adani are believed to be close.

The news has been dominating the international business press this afternoon: Bloomberg | Financial Times | Reuters | CNBC


** CATCH UP QUICK on the top stories from today’s EnterpriseAM:

  • Get ready for the details on 20 companies in the privatization pipeline: The government will next week reveal the names of at least 20 state-owned companies in which it plans to offer stake sales over the next year, Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly said at a press conference yesterday.
  • The state answers real estate players’ pleas: Real estate developers are now entitled to a 20% deadline extension on their projects, Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly said yesterday.
  • Our friends at Abu Dhabi-based Chimera Investments will acquire 20% of Egyptian super app MNT-Halan after investing USD 200 mn in the firm.

🗓 CIRCLE YOUR CALENDAR-

Some key news triggers this month:

  • PMI: S&P Global will publish January’s PMI on Sunday, 5 February.
  • Foreign reserves: The central bank will release January’s foreign reserves figures next week.
  • Inflation: The CBE and Capmas will publish inflation data for January the week after next.

The House of Representatives will reconvene on Sunday, 12 February.

Check out our full calendar on the web for a comprehensive listing of upcoming news events, national holidays and news triggers.

🌦️ TOMORROW’S WEATHER- It’s staying cold (and wet in some parts): Expect daytime highs of 19°C and nighttime lows of 9°C in the capital, according to our favorite weather app and the Egyptian Meteorological Authority. Our friends in Alexandria would be wise to keep their umbrellas handy, with light to medium rainfall forecast along the North Coast and in several other parts of the country through the start of next week.

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FOR YOUR COMMUTE

What is this, cancer detection for ants? Ants can be trained to detect cancer cells in humans using their antennae, which have “a refined sense of smell,” potentially providing a quick and cheap way for early tumor detection, according to a recent study published in the Royal Society. The researchers trained 35 silky ants to correlate urine from tumor-carrying rodents with a reward (in this case, sugar) and found that ants consistently spent more time near urine samples from the cancerous mice than they did with the healthy samples. Although the results seem solid for now, “we are still far from using them as a daily way to detect cancer,” Baptiste Piqueret, a PhD fellow at Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Germany and the lead researcher in the study, told the Washington Post.

Ants aren’t the only species being tested in cancer research — but they could be the easiest and cheapest to train: Previous studies have shown that dogs have the ability to identify cancer from smelling body odor. Mice also proved capable of being trained to distinguish between healthy and tumor-bearing cells, while microorganisms are attracted to “certain organic compounds associated with cancer.” However, ants are the most receptive to training, the WP reported.


YouTube is rolling out a revenue-sharing model for its version of TikTok short videos, YouTube Shorts, as the video platform works to attract more content creators. The platform will give content creators using Shorts — short-form clips it introduced in 2020 — a portion of ad revenues, according to an explainer (watch, runtime: 0:59). The revenue distribution will depend on the creators’ “share of total Shorts views in the Creator pool, meaning creators who account for 2% of Shorts views would be allocated 2% of revenues from these ads.

The new model comes as digital marketing revenues are on the decline, meaning YouTube, TikTok, and other platforms are battling it out for their slices of the revenue pie, the Financial Times notes. YouTube Shorts is in direct competition with TikTok, whose short-form videos have also been met by Instagram introducing its own version, Reels. Since YouTube Shorts’ debut over two years ago, the platform has reached more than 1.5 bn monthly viewers, compared to TikTok’s 1 bn monthly users in September 2021 — the last month on which there is data available.


Team bonding activities make employees cringe: Employees would prefer to be given perks like money handouts or gift cards to boost morale over attending holiday parties and company retreats, according to the Wall Street Journal. A poll found that many workers have different ideas of what constitutes “fun” than their managers, and others are entirely uninterested in developing personal relationships with their coworkers — meaning mandatory “team bonding” activities are more of a burden than they are a perk. As a result, some businesses are now asking employees for their preferences in order to best allocate funds, the WSJ notes.

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ENTERPRISE RECOMMENDS

📺 ON THE TUBE TONIGHT-
(all times CLT)

Every episode of The Rig’s first season ends on a cliffhanger. The sci-fi thriller show — which is exclusively available on Amazon Prime Video — is set in Scotland and follows a crew of sailors trying to return home from the fictional Kinloch Bravo oil rig. As they attempt to make their way back to the mainland, they are met with a heavy fog that cuts off all forms of communication, and the crew is forced to put their loyalty to the test as they attempt to overcome the obstacles that stand in their way. In addition to the excellent acting, the show also had a Doctor Who vibe, which we enjoyed.

Real Madrid will face Valencia tonight at 10pm for a chance to narrow the point differential between Spain’s La Liga leaders, Barcelona (currently at 50 points after beating Real Betis yesterday, while Real Madrid are at 42 points).

In the Italian Cup quarter-finals: Juventus and Lazio face off at 10pm.

It looks like we’re in for a weekend full of contentious match-ups across English, Spanish, German, and Saudi leagues.

Tomorrow, Cristiano Ronaldo will be leading Al-Nassr against Al-Fateh in his first Saudi League match at 5pm. The Portuguese star made his first appearance for his new team against Al-Ittihad in the Saudi Super Cup, which Al-Nassr won 3-1.

The English Premier League Gameweek 22 kicks off on Friday, with Chelsea and Fulham facing off at 10pm for the opening match.

But Saturday is looking stacked:

  • Everton v Arsenal at 2:30pm
  • Manchester United v Crystal Palace at 5pm
  • Wolverhampton v Liverpool at 5pm
  • Brighton v Bournemouth at 5pm
  • Brentford v Southampton at 5pm
  • Aston Villa v Leicester City at 5pm
  • Newcastle v West Ham at 7:30pm

Competition is really heating up in our very own Enterprise Premier League Fantasy League with only 25 points between first and fifth place right now. Join us for a chance to earn a prize at the end by following this link or entering the code: 8o4sut.

Over in La Liga, catch five matches on Friday and Saturday:

  • Athletic Bilbao v Cadiz on Friday at 10pm
  • Espanyol v Osasuna on Saturday at 3pm
  • Elche v Villarreal on Saturday at 5:15pm
  • Atletico Madrid v Getafe Saturday at 7:30pm
  • Real Betis v Celta Vigo Saturday at 10pm

And in the Bundesliga:

  • Augsburg v Bayer Leverkusen on Friday at 9:30pm
  • Borussia Dortmund v Freiburg on Saturday at 4:30pm
  • Cologne v RB Leipzig on Saturday at 4:30pm
  • Mönchengladbach v Schalke 04 on Saturday at 7:30pm

Paris Saint-Germain faces Toulouse in the French League on Saturday at 6pm.

Moroccan Wydad Casablanca will face Saudi Arabia’s Al-Hilal in the second round of the Club World Cup on Saturday at 4:30pm. The victor will advance to the semi-finals, where they will face South American champions, Brazil’s Flamengo, next Tuesday.

Our very own Al Ahly will face the American Seattle Sounders on Saturday at 7:30pm, in the qualifying match for the semi-finals of the FIFA Club World Cup against Real Madrid.

Al Ahly beat New Zealand’s Auckland City with three clean goals in the preliminary round yesterday. The Red Devils tied Barcelona for the most victories in the tournament's history, with seven victories, while Real Madrid topped the list with ten.

🥩 EAT THIS TONIGHT-

Bistro Paris brings its spectacular French delicacies to Maadi: The Parisian-inspired cuisine adds an exquisite touch to Maadi, with other locations in Hydeout New Cairo and LakeYard Hacienda Bay. Try their signature Cafe De Paris steak with garlic butter and a side of delicious homemade french fries. It also boasts a menu full of international cuisine, and some of the most decadent desserts in town — the vanilla creme brulee and fondant au chocolat will not disappoint.

🎤 OUT AND ABOUT-
(all times CLT)

Don’t miss out on a mix of the best electronic, pop, garage rock, and funk & disco beats with Swedish bands Mynth & Siamese Elephants, tonight at 9pm at Cairo Jazz Club in Agouza.

Egyptian Tareeq Band is performing tonight at the Room Art Space Garden City at 9pm.

DJ Mobbz is taking over the stage tonight at The Tap West at 9pm, playing our favorite HipHop and RnB hits.

Wala Fel Ahlam, a rom-com 60s musical performance is running tonight through next Sunday, 5 February, at Kasr El Nile in downtown, at 8pm.

The Pyramids Sound and Light Show is opening its gates from tonight and until Sunday, 11 February, opening up a portal to ancient times. The show will run three times a day, in Arabic, English, and Spanish.

Cairo Show Theater at Movenpick Hotel is hosting Sayidaty ElGamila, a one-day play, starring Ahmed El Sakka this Friday, at 9:30pm.

Head to Rawabet Art Space this Saturday, hosting Comedy Sett, at 8pm.

Ubuntu Art Gallery is hosting Once Again, an exhibition showcasing artist Mohamed Khedr’s work, from 11am-8pm everyday, except Fridays, through 7 February.

👂 EARS TO THE GROUND-

Stuff You Should Know by Josh and Chuck talks about society and culture. If you’re looking to become more well-rounded, this podcast is built to address the most unexpected, yet intriguing topics that will, by default, broaden the perspectives of its listeners. It provides a well-balanced range of themes that have a subtle effect on every business, as well as some taboo subjects that don’t often come up in everyday conversations. We recommend you tune in to Short Stuff: Women Pirates (listen, runtime 16:11), and Selects: Elephants: The Best Animals? (listen, runtime 1:01:09)

💡 UNDER THE LAMPLIGHT-

WILL by actor Will Smith is the “best memoir” Oprah Winfrey has ever read, and is getting rave reviews from readers and the press. Smith weaves together an engrossing narrative of how he became a worldwide sensation, alongside hard-earned lessons in life which led to achieving success, inner contentment, and building lasting relationships. Smith not only sheds light on his epic career but also reveals behind-the-scenes events that paved the way for who he has become. WILL was co-written by Mark Manson, author of The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck..

GO WITH THE FLOW

The EGX30 fell 0.9% at today’s close on turnover of EGP 1.87 bn (4.2% above the 90-day average). Foreign investors were net sellers. The index is up 11.4% YTD.

In the green: Edita Food Industries (+11.0%), Juhayna (+2.7%) and Credit Agricole Egypt (+1.2%).

In the red: Oriental Weavers (-8.6%), GB Auto (-6.5%) and Elsewedy Electric (-6.0%).

CALENDAR

FEBRUARY

26 January-6 February (Thursday-Monday): Cairo International Book Fair, Egypt International Exhibition Center.

2 February (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

5 February (Sunday): The Senate reconvenes.

11 February (Saturday): Second semester of 2022-2023 academic year begins for public universities.

12 February (Sunday): The House reconvenes.

13-15 February (Monday-Wednesday): The Egypt Petroleum Show (Egyps), Egypt International Exhibition Center, Cairo.

23-27 February (Thursday-Monday): Annual Business Women of Egypt’s Women for Success conference.

MARCH

March: 4Q2022 earnings season.

6-9 March (Monday-Thursday): EFG Hermes One-on-One conference, Atlantis, Dubai.

21-22 March (Tuesday-Wednesday): Federal Reserve interest rate meeting.

23 March (Thursday): First day of Ramadan (TBC). Maghreb will be at 6:08pm CLT.

30 March (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

APRIL

April: GAFI to launch the country’s first integrated electronic platform to facilitate setting up a business.

1 April (Saturday): Deadline for banks to establish sustainability units.

10-16 April (Monday-Sunday): IMF / World Bank Spring Meetings, Marrakesh, Morocco.

16 April (Sunday): Coptic Easter

17 April (Monday): Sham El Nessim.

21 April (Friday): Eid El Fitr (TBC).

25 April (Tuesday): Sinai Liberation Day.

27 April (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Sinai Liberation Day (TBC).

30 April (Sunday): Deadline for self-employed to register for e-invoicing.

30 April (Sunday): End of Mediterranean, Nile Delta oil + gas exploration tender.

Late April – 15 May: 1Q2023 earnings season.

MAY

1 May (Monday): Labor Day.

2-3 May (Tuesday-Wednesday): Federal Reserve interest rate meeting.

4 May (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Labor Day (TBC).

4 May (Thursday): IEF-IGU Ministerial Gas Forum, Cairo.

18 May (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

20-21 May (Saturday-Sunday): eGlob Expo, St. Regis Almasa Hotel, Cairo.

22-26 May (Monday-Friday): Egypt will host the African Development Bank (AfDB) annual meetings in Sharm El Sheikh.

JUNE

7-10 (Wednesday-Saturday): The second edition of Africa Health Excon.

10 June (Saturday): Thanaweya Amma examinations begin.

13-14 June (Tuesday-Wednesday): Federal Reserve interest rate meeting.

19-21 June (Monday-Wednesday): Egypt Infrastructure and Water Expo debuts at the Egypt International Exhibition Center.

22 June (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

28 June-2 July (Wednesday-Sunday): Eid El Adha (TBC).

30 June (Friday): June 30 Revolution Day.

JULY

18 July (Tuesday): Islamic New Year.

20 July (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Islamic New Year (TBC).

23 July (Sunday): Revolution Day.

25-26 July (Tuesday-Wednesday): Federal Reserve interest rate meeting.

27 July (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Revolution Day.

Late July-14 August: 2Q2023 earnings season.

AUGUST

3 August (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

SEPTEMBER

19-20 September (Tuesday-Wednesday): Federal Reserve interest rate meeting.

21 September (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

26 September (Tuesday): Prophet Muhammad’s birthday (TBC).

28 September (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Prophet Muhammad’s birthday (TBC).

OCTOBER

6 October (Friday): Armed Forces Day.

Late October-14 November: 3Q2023 earnings season.

31 October – 1 November (Tuesday-Wednesday): Federal Reserve interest rate meeting.

NOVEMBER

2 November (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

DECEMBER

12-13 December (Tuesday-Wednesday): Federal Reserve interest rate meeting.

21 December (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

EVENTS WITH NO SET DATE

2023: The inauguration of the Grand Egyptian Museum.

2023: Egypt will host the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank’s Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors in 2023.

1Q 2023: Adnoc Distribution’s acquisition of 50% of TotalEnergies Egypt to close.

1Q 2023: Egypt + Qatar to launch joint business forum.

1Q 2023: FRA to introduce new rules for short selling.

1Q 2023: Internal trade database to launch.

1Q 2023: The Madbouly government will choose which state-owned hotels will be merged into a new hotels company ahead of an offering to foreign and Gulf investors.

Enterprise is a daily publication of Enterprise Ventures LLC, an Egyptian limited liability company (commercial register 83594), and a subsidiary of Inktank Communications. Summaries are intended for guidance only and are provided on an as-is basis; kindly refer to the source article in its original language prior to undertaking any action. Neither Enterprise Ventures nor its staff assume any responsibility or liability for the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, whether in the form of summaries or analysis. © 2022 Enterprise Ventures LLC.

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