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Sunday, 21 August 2022

THIS EVENING: Did the PIF lock down its United Bank purchase? + OFH is setting up a VC fund this year

Good afternoon, friends, and welcome to another relatively busy Sunday afternoon to disprove the conventional wisdom that Augusts are slow in the land of news.


Orascom Financial Holding (OFH) plans to establish a c.USD 30 mn tech venture capital fund by the end of this year, CEO Nils Bachtler told Enterprise. “We are in the process of exploring regulations and setups, and we're expecting to have everything up and running by the end of this year.” Bachtler said.

Did Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund complete the purchase of United Bank? The Public Investment Fund (PIF) has reportedly completed its acquisition of the bank for an undisclosed amount after the due diligence wrapped up months sooner than expected, Al Shorouk reports, citing unnamed sources it says have knowledge of the matter. The acquisition was expected to be finalized by December.


The international press is broadly focused today on the death of the daughter of a far-right Russian ideologue in a car bombing. Alexander Dugin, whose daughter died in the suspected attack, is an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The story is on the front pages of the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, and Reuters.

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

  • Hassan Abdalla is the new acting governor of the Central Bank of Egypt: President Abdel Fattah El Sisi appointed Hassan Abdalla, the former vice-chairman and managing director of Arab African International Bank and current chairman of state-owned media giant United Media Services, as acting governor of the Central Bank of Egypt on Thursday, one day after Tarek Amer unexpectedly stepped down.
  • The Central Bank of Egypt left interest rates on hold on Thursday, hours after Hassan Abdalla was appointed governor.
  • A new logistics zone in Sokhna: The Suez Canal Economic Zone’s (SCZone) Main Development Company and DP World Sokhna have signed an agreement to build a USD 80 mn logistics zone at Sokhna Port


*** It’s Inside Industry day — your weekly briefing of all things industrial in Egypt. Inside Industry focuses each Sunday on what it takes to turn Egypt into a manufacturing and export powerhouse, ranging from initial investment and planning to product distribution, through to land allocation to industrial processes, supply chain management, labor, automation and technology, inputs and exports, regulation and policy.

In today’s issue: As part of the government’s continuing consultations on its state ownership policy document, the textiles and garments industry had its turn earlier this month to share its thoughts on the privatization plans for the industry. We look at how industry players want the state to proceed with its ownership status in the sector.


Get climate finance for your business from the UK government: As the clock ticks down to COP27, the Climate Finance Accelerator (CFA) is hosting a webinar tomorrow to introduce its plans to support low-carbon projects in Egypt. The CFA, backed by the UK government’s International Climate Finance (ICF), is a four-year technical assistance program designed to “develop a sustainable pipeline of bankable and investment-ready, low-carbon projects and identify suitable financing options.” The webinar is aimed at investors and developers involved in low-carbon projects in Egypt and will discuss climate finance, the CFA’s plans for Egypt, and the benefits of taking part in the program. The webinar takes place tomorrow (Monday, 22 August) starting at 11:30am CLT. Register here.

ALSO HAPPENING TOMORROW- The launch event for the global ClimaTech Run competition for tech entrepreneurs, hosted by USAID-backed Business Egypt, takes place at Le Lac Du Caire at 5pm CLT.

A delegation from the European Investment Bank delegation is visiting Egypt from 17-21 August to discuss the NWFE program with the International Cooperation Ministry, according to a ministry statement. Announced by International Cooperation Minister Rania Al Mashat last month, NWFE is the mechanism by which the ministry will promote its pipeline of low-carbon projects to investors. The EIB delegation is meeting with officials from the international cooperation, agriculture, irrigation and housing ministries during its visit to discuss the details of the program.

The second Egypt- and UN-led regional climate roundtable takes place in Bangkok this Thursday: The one-day event will see climate negotiators from the Asia-Pacific region discuss climate finance with private- and public-sector stakeholders ahead of the COP27 summit in November. This is the second of five regional roundtables being organized by Egypt and the UN. The first took place in Ethiopia last month.

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

☀️ TOMORROW’S WEATHER- The mercury is set to rise slightly tomorrow to a high of 36°C, with a nighttime low of 27°C, our favorite weather app tells us.

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