Africa’s consumer-facing industries have the potential to deliver good investment returns, according to Robert Scharar, Commonwealth Funds manager and president of financial planning and investment firm, FCA Corp.
Scharar is the fund manager for the newly launched Africa Fund – based in the United States – that invests in publicly traded companies across the continent. The fund is less interested in investing in resource companies in Africa, and focuses more on businesses targeting the continent’s growing consumer class.
“One of the reasons for that is that the resource companies tend to be global in nature,” Scharar told How we made it in Africa. “Many of those companies are global securities so you are not offering the shareholders something they couldn’t access really easily on their own. So while we might buy stocks in resource companies, we tend to look for the growing service businesses and other things… So we would look at companies involved in consumer goods sales, it could be supermarket chains, it could be transportation companies, it could be banking and health service providers – things that are servicing what we see as a growing consumer class across the continent of Africa.”
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