I write about money in Africa for the Wall Street Journal. Greek immigrant. Tell me things matina.stevis@wsj.com

Businesses Seek Out New African Frontiers

wsj.com — Shoprite Holdings Ltd. sold more Guinness stout at its 11 stores in Angola and Nigeria last year than at home in South Africa, where it has 10 times as many outlets. But Africa's biggest retailer is also contending with an Islamic insurgency in Nigeria, where Boko Haram militants have staged attacks near its shops-and the effects of wilting...

South Africa’s Sasol Says Savings Savvy Vital for Volatile Oil Market

blogs.wsj.com — Major oil companies are scrambling to cut costs as global oil prices plummet. Sasol, South Africa's petrochemicals giant, is the latest to roll out its aggressive savings plan, involving potentially thousands of job cuts. Sasol has two goals in mind: Weather the slump in crude prices; and be well placed to take advantage of any business opportunities as soon as the market turns around.

Sasol Cuts 1,500 Jobs as Oil Price Slumps

wsj.com — NAIROBI-South African petrochemicals giant Sasol Ltd. said it has cut 1,500 jobs, the latest big round of layoffs in a global oil sector scrambling to cope with the oil-price rout. Sasol said it was also slashing its dividend to weather lower oil prices, even as it reported a big jump in second-half 2014 profit.

Standard Bank’s Sharpened Focus on Africa Lifts Profit

wsj.com — Standard Bank Group Ltd., Africa's biggest lender by assets, recorded a 12% rise in net profit in 2014 as it continued to dispose of business outside the continent. The Johannesburg-based bank said net profit rose to 15.93 billion South African rand ($1.35 billion) from 14.26 billion rand in 2013, on a 1% rise in group headline earnings to 17.32...

Kenya Set for Faster Growth, Says World Bank

wsj.com — NAIROBI-Low oil prices and loose monetary policy in the U.S. have bolstered Kenya's economy, East Africa's largest, helping it grow faster than expected last year and setting it on course for sustained growth in the years ahead, the World Bank said in a report Thursday.

MTN Rides Africa Mobile Data Boom Amid Nigeria’s Woes

wsj.com — NAIROBI-MTN Group Ltd., Africa's largest telecommunications company, has weathered trouble in Nigeria and currency-related losses through strong demand for mobile data services and cost-cutting to record a 20% jump in net profit in 2014 from the previous year.

Africa’s bond bonanza finds fewer takers

marketwatch.com — NAIROBI--For the past two years, debt investors have been flocking to Africa, lured by the promise of high returns and the continent's enormous economic potential. But the benign climate that enabled nations that were once financial pariahs to raise billions of dollars is rapidly clouding over.

Africa’s Bond Bonanza Finds Fewer Takers

wsj.com — NAIROBI-For the past two years, debt investors have been flocking to Africa, lured by the promise of high returns and the continent's enormous economic potential. But the benign climate that enabled nations that were once financial pariahs to raise billions of dollars is rapidly clouding over.

IMF Board Approves $750 Million Precautionary Program for Kenya

wsj.com — NAIROBI-The International Monetary Fund board on Monday approved a request by the government of Kenya for a precautionary program of about $750 million, said the fund's resident representative in Kenya, Armando Morales. The Kenyan government had requested the program as an insurance policy again economic shocks, despite having successfully borrowed in the international capital markets in 2014 in its first dollar-denominated bond.

Refugees Cross a Narrow Sea Passage With Europe on Horizon

wsj.com — CHIOS, Greece-Amer Khalif, a 23-year-old Syrian refugee, swam frantically toward the Greek coast-guard boat, screaming "Help, help!" Two friends panted behind him, clinging to their inner tubes and splashing in the clear Aegean water on a warm September morning.
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Mar 31, 2015

RT @silentcarto: Maps: Explore our interactive on the battle against Islamic State bit.ly/1CIxDuA via @WSJ pic.twitter.com/Z3bNyCgXQ3

Mar 31, 2015

RT @ejcs: Congratulations to Nigerian friends, no matter who you support, on your exciting, historic election.

Mar 31, 2015

@DavidBiderman1 I certainly don't. But I can tell u about Addis Ababa!

Mar 31, 2015

RT @DavidBiderman1: When will Greece run out of money? "The truth is: Nobody knows. Even Greece." Gotta love it @MatinaStevis blogs.wsj.com/briefly/2015/0…

Mar 31, 2015

RT @jeromestarkey: RT @MilesAmoore: Kano celebrations for perceived Buhari victory growing increasingly wild #nigeriadecides pic.twitter.com/zzPD9Y9HEW

Mar 31, 2015

RT @laurnorman: Our latest as #Irantalks labor on - and possibly past - tonight's deadline. wsj.com/articles/russi…

Mar 31, 2015

Massive day for #Nigeria, its democracy & #Africa: @WSJ colleagues on ground @patmcgroarty & @HeidiVogt + @drewfhinshaw there in spirit

Mar 31, 2015

RT @elnathan: Now, President Jonathan has two choices. Drive us all into chaos. Or be the guy who organised the most credible elections ever.

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