A spy with an eye for investment makes multimillion dollar inroads


Former head of South African intelligence, Mo Shaik is making inroads into the continent with the pan-African investment operation he is running for the Development Bank of Southern Africa.

Shaik, a banker by trade, said at WEF Africa in Cape Town that he has gathered 5 billion rand in investment into everything from roads to oil & gas pipelines in the last year. He believes state coffers can no longer afford to pay for the infrastructure that the continent needs.

“Government need to create an environment where capital can come in and build. But African governments also need to set up mechanisms where they can supervise infrastructure projects in their country so they can be done properly,” he said.

The investments include building hundreds of kilometres of roads across Zambia and Zimbabwe, a power project in Ghana, oil & gas in Mozambique.

Shaik also said the DBSA contributed 150 million US dollars in raising funds for a sovereign wealth fund in Angola that will be used to build roads and infrastructure.

Shaik said in the future, the operation will look at investing in a new coal fired power station at Mamba in Zambia.      

*Chris Bishop is Managing Editor of Forbes Africa and is attending the World Economic Forum on Africa 2015, which takes place in Cape Town, 3-5 June.