FINANCIAL writer David Mataen has published a book that explores the growing investment opportunities in emerging Africa. The book "Africa -- The Ultimate Frontier Market: A guide to the business and investment opportunities in emerging Africa" is an investor's guide to the transformations that have occurred in the African business landscape in the last 60 years and the key areas of interest for the future.
The book should be of particular interest to individuals and corporations interested in doing business with the continent. Sub-Saharan Africa is now one of the world's most talked about regions in terms of emerging investment opportunities and sources of new growth. Its economies represent a quintessential frontier market and they are set to develop into an area of long-term investment interest.
"Africa -- The Ultimate Frontier Market" provides a detailed but lucid look at the changing trends in social life, government and business since the 1960s.
It explains the background to consumer market developments and why they have occurred, the enablers that have been laid down within Africa that ready it for business expansion, and the sectors where there is opportunity for investment and growth.
By following the long-term developments described by Mataen, investors will understand the pace of change in Africa in the past and gain an appreciation for how its business and economy will progress in the future. At this time of great opportunity, this book is an essential addition to anyone's investment library.
With the launch of the Mobius Africa Fund set to test investor interest in this emerging market, Mataen's book could not come at a more crucial time.
Mataen says of his book: "What motivated me to write this book were two major factors which were mutually perpetuating. The growing interest in Africa as a business proposition or destination for investments which has been generating overwhelming inquiries and demand for information and appetite for knowledge on the continent and its economic attractions. This is about the demand.
"The second factor was the frustrations of the aridity and barrenness everyone quickly encounters when they embark on the search for organised and quality information on the continent. It is just not there. This is about the supply.
"Hitherto, a dynamic stalemate has reigned between these two opposing forces. And this is where 'Africa -- The Ultimate Frontier Market' comes in. It has sought to close the gap between the two forces, to bridge the chasm dividing demand for and supply of premier content on the emerging African economic appeal," he said.
Mataen was born and educated in Africa and has spent 13 years working there in financial services, including time in commercial and investment banking, stock brokerage, and management consultancy.
He also spent two and a half years as a contributing columnist to Business Daily.
In the course of his working life he has picked up invaluable insights that have become a foundation for his expert knowledge of business and investing in the continent; he is perfectly placed to comment on African society and business growth within it.
He is currently the head of corporate finance at Faida Investment Bank in Nairobi, Kenya.
"What makes this book most relevant at this moment in time is the time itself.
It is by any measure Africa's turn -- the attention of the world has finally successfully turned to Africa as the ultimate and final source of long-term growth opportunities. Anyone not looking at Africa now may be making the same mistake made by those who ignored China and India 15 or 20 years ago. This book may well be the beacon light to this global pursuit and contest for Africa's economic soul," said Mataen.