Ethiopian Business Review

Nassir Dino (PhD), associate professor of software engineering, is chairman of the organizing committee of ‘Zamzam Bank’. He is also the cofounder and president of Higher Learning Center of Excellence (HiLCoE), a specialized centre of excellence in education, research and consultancy in the field of information and communication technology (ICT). The Centre was established in 1997 and has since graduated thousands of skilled professionals.

Thirteen years ago, Nassir started to establish Zamzam, the first Islamic bank in Ethiopia. However, his effort did not bore fruit because the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE), the financial regulatory body, denied them license to start operations in the final hours.

After 13 years of patience, however, his effort got favorable response from the administration of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD). During the holy month of Ramadan, on May 22, Yinager Dessie (PhD), the new governor of NBE, met the founders of Zamzam; and informed them the good news. After more than a decade of stall, the Governor told them to resurrect Zamzam. On the same day, the Premiere also reaffirmed his support for the realization of the bank. This was announced in a historic speech the PM made at the grand Iftar at the Millennium Hall. For Nassir, his team and the tens of millions of Ethiopian Muslims, the ecstasy the news created was unprecedented and is still afresh.

Zamzam has already started floating shares and is set to start operations in about a year. EBR’s Ashenafi Endale discusses with the professor who also studied Islamic Banking and Islamic Insurance in London, the UK, about the prospect of the bank.

Tuesday, 16 July 2019 00:00
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Adefris Worku (PhD), is director of Climate Science Research at the Ethiopian Environment and Forest Research Institute. He has conducted various research on climate change that has sbeen published on local and foreign journals. He blames the government for giving little attention to the forestry sector. Although schemes like carbon trading can have a positive impact on the country’s reforestation efforts, he stresses that it is only after the government focuses on the area that the nation can recover from the adverse impacts of climate change. EBR’s Ashenafi Endale sat down with him to further understand the issues the country is facing.

Sunday, 16 June 2019 02:00
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Hilina Belete is one of the few entrepreneurs in Ethiopia who have managed to take a family business to the next level, making it a successful and strong contender in the food industry. She is the CEO of Hilina Enriched Foods Processing, at which she worked in various posts before taking it over from her father. It took Hilina more than a decade to be what she is today. When the 32-year old entrepreneur took the CEO post, the company was not well-known as it is now. But after a joint venture agreement with ONYX.S.A.S (Group Nutriset) of France, overseen by Hilina, the company pioneered the production of high quality nutritional and fortified foods for both the institutional and commercial market in Ethiopia and East Africa region. This includes Plumpy‘nut (RUTF), Plumpy’ sup (RUSF), Sheba Peanut Butter and Sheba Peanut Splits. With hundreds of employees and through its network of local suppliers, Hilina attempts to fill the gap in the country’s efforts to raise food security.

As one of the youngest CEOs in Ethiopia, Hilina believes investors are not still aware of the big opportunities in the country’s food sectors. Mentioning the challenges she faces to get raw material, Hilina thinks ventures should be incentivized to invest in the food sector. EBR’s Samson Berhane sat down with her to learn what makes Hilina tick.

Sunday, 16 June 2019 00:00
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