14 June 2013

How to invest in Africa

Todd Moss and Ross Thuotte at CGD made the case a few weeks ago for investing in Africa (literally). 

The question for how best to do this popped into my head a few weeks ago at a conference on business in Africa. So what can you do? I have some very meagre savings, and interest rates are so low right now in the UK they may as well be stuffed under my mattress. Surely there is a way of tapping into the high growth in developing countries?

I asked the question on twitter and got these five responses:
‏@davidcshipley: There's plenty of options which will get you way more than 2% - EMD, AR strasts etc. (Not investment advice). for Africa specifically there are some frontier funds which directly focus there, plus EM Eqs which have some allocation 
@Scott_Gilmore:  Try http://myc4.com  
@StyledByAfrica: Check out @Homestrings about investing in Africa 
‏@tylercowen: Some contemporary African art is fairly liquid, it has a high bid-ask spread but one way to start... 
‏@RealClearAfrica:  http://investinginafrica.net/#cat-1
Anyone have any experience with any of this or any other tips?


M Kevane said...

Maybe you could decide what African country you are likely to want to retire to, then what region in that country, then what village, then who would be your host in village, and then invest in building a house. Then plant some trees.... then an orchard... then a poultry farm.... then a motorbike with a large frame on back for hanging all the chickens as you drive to market.

I think successful investors are people who decide at some point they really would rather be rich than not-rich (by global standards you'll be top 1% no matter what). It takes a lot of time to be a good investor. (Anybody can be a lucky investor, obviously.) You can't be an investor and also a do-gooder I think (I mean the kind of person who actually does stuff rather than giving money to non-profits). Both take a lot of time. Of course, you can also invest in the USAID/DFID trough. But then you'd have to start writing sentences like, "Climate change mixed with limited livelihood options will generate a combustible mix with security and instability implications for coming decades."

Homestrings said...

Thanks to @StyledByAfrica for suggesting Homestrings! We have a post on 'Where to Start' with investing in Africa here: https://www.facebook.com/notes/homestrings/investing-back-home-where-to-start/397302020358518

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