Tuesday, 10 January 2017

President Akufo-Addo's Administration Must Remain Focused On Making Ghana More Business-Friendly For Both Local And Foreign Investors

When Saudi Arabia's Prince Alwaleed bin Talal's Kingdom Holdings announced that it was selling its stake in Accra's luxury Mövenpick  Ambassador Hotel, many Ghanaians must have wondered who would buy it.

Well, it so happens that Kingdom Holdings Company has eventually sold its interest in Accra's Mövenpick Ambassador Hotel for U.S.$100M. Clearly, those who purchased it, Quantum Global Investments Africa Management Ltd.of Mauritius, are confident of Ghana's future prospects.

Let us, as a people, have hope in our nation's future. This is a marvellous place - despite its many challenges. Ghana can be transformed- and it eventually will.

Now that a new government has taken over from the previous National Democratic Congress (NDC) regime of President Mahama, it is important that  when Parliament finally approves the ministers nominated by President Akufo-Addo, and they start working, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) administration focuses on the important business of creating an enabling environment for the private-sector to thrive.

The new administration must not allow itself to be distracted from that task by storm-in-tea-cup-issues that ordinary people don't really think will either make a difference to the task of improving their country's economy or impact their living standards in any shape or form.

As regards the arguments about the president's inaugural day speech, the new government  must simply learn from what is a self-inflicted wound and move on - by  putting that unfortunate and needless case of plagiarism in part of the president's speech (delivered after his swearing in, on 7th January, 2017), behind it.

The President also needs to quickly resolve the issue of the state providing former President Mahama with the retirement home he wants. Whatever the law says, surely, President Akufo-Addo can ask him to continue staying in the house he lived in during his tenure as president, as a state guest, till the end of his natural life - whereupon it will be taken back by the state again? That resolves the problem neatly, does it not?

Our homeland Ghana is a fantastic country and is indeed open for business - as President Akufo-Addo said in his inaugural speech.

Getting more information out to investors (both Ghanaian and foreign) about the many business opportunities here, and creating an environment that will give them confidence that they will get decent returns on their investments in our country, and that all their businesses here will be safe, is what should occupy the minds of our nation's  politicians - not pointless arguments about plagiarism.

Yes, plagiarism is terrible and must be avoided at all costs by the President's speechwriters because it is in effect theft of intellectual property and totally unacceptable - but we must stop crying over spilt milk and move on.

The harm has already been done, in any case. Clearly, the president needs more diligent speechwriters - very good ones who won't embarrass him in future. Are our university English faculties not full of good potential speech-writing candidates who will never dream of producing lifted and unattributed content for the President of the Republic of Ghana? Haaba. Hmm, Ghana - eyeasem o.

And since we want the world to know that this is a nation of laws,  the new NPP government must ask the Ghana Police Service to arrest and prosecute all those morons seizing state properties across the country, and prosecute them in the law courts.

Above all, the President must address the nation on this matter and make it absolutely clear to those extremist NPP members and supporters seizing government properties (because  their party has come to power again after years in the political wilderness),  that he disapproves of such lawlessness strongly - and will not tolerate party members  taking the law into their hands in that manner: because this is a nation in which the rule of law prevails.

The responsible sections of the Ghanaian media  must play their part in the nation-building effort by giving hope to young people  that  Ghana indeed does have a bright future ahead of it - because it really is an attractive investment destination.

The culled APO press release posted below announcing the purchase of Prince Alwaleed's Kingdom Holdings' interest in Movenpick Ambassador Hotel proves that point in our humble view. The transaction which closed on 28 December 2016 is said to be sub-Saharan Africa's biggest open-market hotel transaction thus far. Splendid.

Please read on:

''PORT LOUIS, Mauritius, January 10, 2017/ --

    QG Africa Hotel LP acquires 100% of exceptional Mövenpick Ambassador Hotel in Central Business District of Accra, Ghana

    Largest open-market hotel transaction in sub-Saharan Africa to date

QG Africa Hotel LP, a Mauritius based investment fund managed by Quantum Global Investments Africa Management Ltd., today announced the acquisition of the Movenpick Ambassador Hotel Accra from Kingdom Holding Company (KHC). The transaction which closed on 28 December 2016 marks the most sizable open-market hotel transaction in Sub-Saharan Africa to date.

Complementing Quantum Global’s (www.QuantumGlobalGroup.com) already significant African investment portfolio the value proposition of this transaction is underpinned by its status as one of the largest hotel and mixed use properties in West Africa occupying an exceptional position in both business and touristic segments of the African hospitality market.

Quantum Global’s Group CEO, Jean-Claude Bastos de Morais, commented: “The acquisition of the Movenpick Ambassador Hotel Accra, one of sub-Saharan Africa's most successful hotels, is a great testament to the strength of our Hotel Fund and its growing portfolio. The hospitality industry across Africa is an indicator of the vitality and attractiveness of key locations across the continent and we look to further take advantage of those opportunities and generate value added returns for our investors.”

Sitting on a spectacular 16 acres (6.5 hectares) site of landscaped gardens in Accra’s Central Business District, Movenpick Ambassador Hotel Accra comprises extensive food and beverage as well as conference facilities making it the largest 5-star conference hotel in Ghana. The property is also complemented by retail as well as office facilities that form part of a unique environment, valued by tenants as well as hotel guests.

Adrian Leuenberger, Managing Director, Group Head of Asset Management, Quantum Global, commented: “Movenpick Ambassador Hotel Accra has demonstrated outstanding growth through the highly-rated and reliable delivery of world class hospitality facilities to its international and local customers. We are delighted with this major acquisition and are looking forward to a very promising future.”

Distributed by APO on behalf of Quantum Global Group.

QG Africa Hotel LP is a USD 500 million investment vehicle which aims to capitalize on the emerging opportunities in the hospitality sector. The fund is a long-term direct equity investor in hotel projects across sub-Saharan Africa, including greenfield and brownfield operations. The investment activities include construction, conversions, acquisition and renovation of hotel projects across sub-Saharan Africa.

Media Contact:
Linda Martin
Quantum Global
Phone: + 41 41 560 2900
Email: media@QuantumGlobalGroup.com

About Quantum Global:
Quantum Global (www.QuantumGlobalGroup.com) is an international group of companies active in the areas of private equity investments, investment management as well as macroeconomic research and econometric modelling. Quantum Global’s private equity arm manages a family of funds targeting direct investments in Africa in the sectors of Agriculture, Healthcare, Hotels, Infrastructure, Mining and Timber – as well as a sector agnostic Structured Equity Fund. Our team combines a solid track record and proven expertise to identify and execute unique investment opportunities with focus on Africa. Quantum Global works in close partnership with key stakeholders to maximize investment value and returns through active management and value creation. For more information, visit www.QuantumGlobalGroup.com.

Quantum Global Group"

End of culled APO press release.
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