African Music Bops Help Boomplay Raise $20 Million

African Music Bops Help Boomplay Raise $20 Million

By CultureBanx Team

  • Africa’s Boomplay raised a $20M Series A round

  • Boomplay reaches 44 million active users

CBx Vibe:Soco” Starboy Feat. Wizkid

Boomplay, Africa’s top streaming platform owned by Transsion has just closed a $20 million Series A funding round, for content acquisition, recruitment and product optimization. Music across the continent is widely fragmented but remains one of the last true growth opportunities in the world. This begs the question: is Boomplay’s long term play to get acquired by streaming giants like Spotify (SPOT -0.28%) or Apple Music (AAPL -0.36%)?

Why This Matters: The success of streaming has attracted lots of new investment and longtime owners have seen an opportunity to cash out. Much of Boomplay’s growth is due to the streaming service coming pre-installed on Transsion smartphones, which are the best selling ones in the continent. This strategy has allowed Boomplay to quickly reach 44 million active users. By comparison Spotify and Apple music have 200 million and 56 million active users.

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Angola’s Unitel Board Wants to Oust Africa’s Richest Woman

Angola’s Unitel Board Wants to Oust Africa’s Richest Woman

By CultureBanx Team

  • Isabel dos Santos owns a 25% stake in Unitel

  • Other shareholders want to cut down on the influence of dos Santos

CBx Vibe:We Ain’t Homies” Arin Ray Feat. YG

Africa’s richest woman Isabel dos Santos has been re-elected to the board of Unitel, Angola's biggest telecommunications company. The decision comes after speculation that dos Santos could have been ousted due to a shareholder dispute.

Why This Matters: Ownership of Unitel is split equally between Isabel dos Santos, Oi, Sonangol and Leopoldino do Nascimento, each has a 25% stake in the company. Sonangol recently started making waves on the board by hinting at possibly selling its stake, and wanted to cut down the influence dos Santos had at the company.

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Zimbabwe’s New Currency Exacerbates Poverty

Zimbabwe’s New Currency Exacerbates Poverty

By CultureBanx Team

  • Zimbabwe's central bank introduced a new currency called RTGS dollars

  • In 2009, the Zimbabwean dollar was destroyed due to hyperinflation

CBx Vibe:Left Da Bank” Zaytoven

Zimbabwe's central bank decided to introduce yet another currency into its already crippled financial system. The country recently started trading a sharply discounted replacement currency called RTGS, as they attempt to ease a cash shortage that has paralyzed the economy and forced millions deeper into poverty.  

Why This Matters: John Mangudya, Zimbabwe’s central bank chief perhaps views this as a safer and less risky bet after the Zimbabwean dollar was destroyed in 2009 due to hyperinflation. The BBC reported at its height prices were almost doubling every day and the central bank printed notes worth 100 trillion Zimbabwe dollars to try and keep up. The RTGS dollar is supposed to bring together bond notes, debit cards and mobile payments to make sure that they are all worth the same.

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Are Chief Diversity Officers Losing the Good Fight?

By Fredrick Lee

  • 20% of Fortune 500 companies have diversity officers

  • More-diverse corporations outperform less-diverse competitors by 35%

CBx Vibe:Fragile” Tech N9ne Feat. Kendrick Lamar

Diversity and inclusion is a profitable avenue for corporations not to ignore.  However, recent bad press from corporations like Gucci and Prada raise questions about their commitment to diversity. Many chief diversity officers lack leadership support, resources and training. Perhaps this makes promoting diversity a harder commitment and sets these executives up for failure.

Why This Matters:  Only 20% of Fortune 500 companies employ chief diversity officers. In many cases corporate leaders listed diversity at the bottom of the top eight business strategies for their corporations. It’s easy to see why more than half of surveyed chief diversity officers in a 2018 McKinsey study, feels there is little or no support from corporate leaders for their work.

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African Unicorn Jumia Heads to Wall Street

African Unicorn Jumia Heads to Wall Street

By CultureBanx Team

  • Jumia set to IPO on the NYSE

  • The e-commerce platform raised about $770M and is valued at $1.2B

African e-commerce platform Jumia filed with the SEC to raise up to $100 million in an initial public offering. The tech unicorn has grown quickly but is burning through an equally high amount of cash in its quest to become the Amazon (AMZN +1.55%) and Alibaba (BABA +0.34%) of Africa.

Why This Matters: Some analysts think listing Jumia shares on the NYSE makes sense, but investor appetite is questionable considering the company's persistent financial losses in its core markets. Jumia has raised about $770 million from investors and is valued at $1.2 billion. However, at the end of 2018 the e-commerce firm loss $977 million.

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