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Monday, 20 March 2023

Egypt could be the continent’s top wind generator by the end of the century + Are the tides officially turning against WFH?

Egypt could soon become Africa’s biggest wind generator, dethroning South Africa from the top spot as the continent’s largest wind generator by 2030, energy columnist Gavin Maguire writes for Reuters, citing data from Global Energy Monitor. Maguire expects South Africa to slip to become the 28th biggest wind energy producer in the world, from 25 currently, giving way to Egypt to rise to the 25th spot.

REMEMBER- Egypt’s wind power generation jumped 13% y-o-y in 2022 to 6.1 GWh, and there’s more to come with private companies currently constructing or developing some 2.8 GW of fresh wind capacity, while the government is set to add 252 MW of wind capacity in the Gulf of Suez.

It’s time: Major US corporates are signaling to their employees that the WFH era is coming to a close. Large US-based companies — including Meta, Amazon, Starbucks Corporation, and Walt Disney — are now requiring their employees to work from their office spaces, Bloomberg reports. Many companies have stopped short of demanding employees to report to the office five days a week, with Amazon, General Motors, and Starbucks enforcing a hybrid model with three days per week from the office and Disney requiring employees to work from the office four days per week.

Was WFH going to spell the end of creativity? Many of the companies above had installed a remote or hybrid work policy, but their backtracking on a remote work environment could be the result of a threat to creativity, Bloomberg suggests. News Corp CEO Robert Thomson claimed that employees are losing “subtleties of body language and the nuances of knowing glances,” while Disney CEO Bob Iger added that the creativity and collaboration needed for their industry was under threat.

There are undeniable cultural upsides to working from the office: An EY study conducted this year found that working from the office for some time is essential to foster company success, in fact, it has led several companies to invest in real estate (a whopping 58%) in an effort to not necessarily expand, but rather to “curate” a space suitable for the post-pandemic labor trends.

Was the collapse of SVB a sign that VCs need to talk about how to manage their money? Years of loose monetary policy enabled relatively immature venture capital firms to amass unusually large sums of cash, far in excess of what they needed, says the Financial Times, quoting an unnamed former chief risk officer at a prominent US bank. Yet after spending the past week scrambling to ensure their banked funds, VCs are coming to face how little time they had spent thinking about how to manage them. The faster the cash flowed in, the less attention the companies paid to it, added David Koenig, head of DCRO Risk Governance Institute. VCs also hadn’t considered that regulators would only insure the first USD 250k of cashed money in the event of trouble.

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