The African Women Impact Fund (AWIF) is an initiative of the UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and its partners (UN Women, the Office of the Special Envoy on Women, Peace and Security of the African Union Commission, and the African Women Leadership Network) established in collaboration with the Standard Bank Group and MiDA Advisors with the aim of creating a sustainable investment platform to grow the number of women asset managers on the African continent.
The foundation was established in Jersey on 1 December 2020 by Standard Bank Offshore Trust Company Jersey Limited (“SBOTCJL”) for the Standard Bank Group.
The Foundation was created to support the AWIF initiative, which aims to raise up to $1 billion over 10 years (€840 million or R15.1 billion) for women fund managers, who in turn will invest in high-impact businesses and projects across the African continent. Standard Bank Group and MiDA Advisors partnered with UNECA to launch AWIF in 2020 in response to the African Union’s Agenda 2063 and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals 5 and 8 – which target gender equality, decent work and economic growth and to address the gender inequality that less than 5% of asset managers in Africa are women. The African Women Impact Fund Foundation, will secure donations from international donors, and will provide support to the AWIF initiative by providing capital, operational support and a structured development programme
Kenya welcomes 50th signatory
to the Women Empowerment Principles
Stanbic Bank Kenya officially signed the Women Empowerment Principles (WEPS), highlighting the bank’s unwavering support towards women. The signing marked Stanbic Bank as the 50th organization to sign the Women Empowerment Principles allowing the bank to join a global network of over 5,000 companies, including 49 companies in Kenya, that are committed to achieving gender equality in the workplace, marketplace, and community.
Africa’s data centre market poised for massive growth
Africa is poised for a data centre boom as internet penetration rates rise and the continent begins to play catch-up with other regions.
For the time being, Africa accounts for less than 1% of the world’s co-location data centre supply, with South Africa accounting for the bulk of the continent’s capacity. Co-location facilities rent space, power and cooling to enterprise and hyperscale customers; they also offer interconnection enabling businesses to scale at low complexity and cost. Customers in Africa are increasingly using data centres to access public cloud-based services from hosts like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft and others.
We expect to see a substantial wave of data centre investments materialise across the continent, led by regional economic powerhouses including South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria. Other markets, including Ghana, which are attracting investment from big US Tech giants like Twitter and Google, are increasingly seeing interest from data centre investors. Other secondary markets of interest include Uganda and Cote d’Ivoire, while interest in North Africa is also on the rise.
Standard Bank wins big at the World’s Best Digital Banking Awards 2021
Global Finance has announced the Round One winners for the 2021 World’s Best Digital Banks Awards in Africa, in which Standard Bank Group has been selected for multiple awards across seven categories.
How businesses can benefit from a data-driven culture
In a world with increased competition and ever-evolving customer expectations, companies are using data now more than ever to make more informed business decisions. This approach to using data has been integrated into almost every industry, with financial services being one of the front-runners. The value of data and analytics lies in its ability to solve real world problems through precise integration of data, statistics, mathematics, and technology. However, to harness the power of data and make informed data-driven decisions, a data culture remains a prerequisite and must exist at the heart of an organisation.
The use of historical data and traditional data points has always formed an integral part of a bank’s decision-making processes. But with the evolution of digital and omni-channel capabilities, the quantity and recency of data has exponentially increased, allowing banks to make real-time decisions based on comprehensive data sets. As banks are continually trying to solve customer problems and address unique customer needs, using comprehensive real-time customer data provides the bank with the opportunity to recognise customers as individuals and engage in a way that makes them feel unique, appreciated and understood.
Model Partnerships - Catalysing Africa’s digital transformation by backing start-up growth
The accelerating pace of technological change and Africa’s booming tech start-up ecosystem has drawn the attention and support of large African corporations like Standard Bank.
Standard Bank is committed to growing entrepreneurship across Africa to drive Africa’s growth.
The bank also intends to move beyond merely serving financial services and transform into a platform business by investing in innovations and partnering with others, including start-ups.
Traditionally, corporations and start-ups haven’t always seen eye to eye because of different mindsets.
Start-ups, unlike Corporates, are associated with nimble capabilities equipped to explore opportunity spaces in short bursts of iterative sprints until a repeatable model is found. Corporates, on the other hand, are accustomed to familiar repeatable business models.