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Nigerian-based Kobo360 raises US$1.2 million seed round

Nigerian-based logistics startup Kobo360 has raised $1.2 million in pre-seed funding round soon after being accepted into the YCombinator class of 2018

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Nigerian-based logistics startup Kobo360 has raised $1.2 million in pre-seed funding round soon after being accepted into the YCombinator class of 2018.

The round was led by Western Technology Investment and Nigeria’s Verod Capital Management.

Kobo360 has developed an Uber-like app that connects Nigerian truckers to companies with freight needs. The startup intends to use the funds to pay drivers online immediately after completing a successful haul.

Within just 4 months since their launch, Kobo360 reportedly processed orders worth an estimated $2.8 million. The company reportedly coordinates 5,000 trips a month, has served 324 businesses and moved north of 37 million kilograms of cargo since 2017. It currently has 5,480 active drivers using the platform.

Kobo360 is looking to launch its app in Hausa and Pidgin by August this year. It also plans to add 20,000 trucks on its platform and expand to Togo, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, and Senegal.

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World Bank predicts Mozambique economy growing at 5.7% on average

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The World Bank has predicted that the economic growth in Mozambique is expected to accelerate in the medium term averaging 5.7% between 2022 and 2024, as a result of demand recovery and economy benefits from the start of liquefied natural gas production this year.

In a report released Thursday, the World Bank said the start of LNG production at the offshore Coral Project and the expected resumption of other LNG projects would help spur the southeast African nation’s growth in the intervening year.

The World Bank said a three-year extended credit facility arrangement agreed by Mozambique with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and budget support from other partners would further help to strengthen its economic recovery.

The IMF’s executive board had, in May, approved a $456 million program for the country, the first since the global lender suspended support to Mozambique six years ago.

However, the World Bank warned that risks remained for Mozambique’s growth, especially from rising import prices due to the conflict in Ukraine, a possible surge in COVID infection waves, and insurgency in the north.

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Nigeria, Algeria, Niger to revive Saharan gas pipeline talks

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The governments of Nigeria, Algeria and Niger Republic have held talks to revive a gas pipeline project across the Sahara which had been put on hold for over 40 years, with the potential opportunity for Europe to diversify its gas sources as the world faces a short fall as a result of the Russian-Ukraine war.

The three countries, represented by their various Petroleum Ministers, met in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital on Wednesday and resolved to set up a task force to revive the project and designated an entity to update the feasibility study.

A statement by Niger’s Oil Ministry after the two-day meeting stated that the Trans-Saharan gas pipeline project estimated at $13 billion, could send up to 30 billion cubic metres a year of supplies to Europe.

The statement added that the energy ministers of the three countries will meet again in Algiers at the end of July to “validate the proposals of the newly installed task force.”

“The pipeline should allow Europe to diversify its sources of natural gas supply but also allow several African states to access this high value energy source,” the statement said.

“With a length of 4,128 kilometres (2,565 miles), the pipeline would start in Warri, Nigeria, and end in Hassi R’Mel, Algeria, where it would connect to existing pipelines that run to Europe,” it said.

The gas pipeline idea was first proposed more than 40 years ago with an agreement signed between the three countries in 2009, but progress stalled stalled following a lack of follow through by the countries.

Earlier this month, Nigeria also took steps to revive another gas pipeline project that would pass through West Africa, Morocco to Europe.

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