Bloomberg Launches African Edition – A Step Forward For Africa’s Growing Financial Markets

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The economy of Africa is on the move. Despite the political shocks and inconsistency of global commodity prices that slow down the growth of the continent, Africa keeps getting up, dusting its shoulders and surges forward.

A good example can be seen in our own country. Kenya has been recently described as a growing incubation hub for businesses, international traders and general growth in the Eastern African region. We have received a number of high profile guests including Facebook C.E.O Mark Zuckerberg who described the country as the ‘world leader’ in mobile money. He was inspired by the strides that the country is making in terms of development and it truly is exciting to picture where Kenya and the continent in general can be in the next five years.

The magnitude of information shared is also an aspect that’s worth mentioning. With the rapid expansion of internet connectivity, faster speeds and more people accessing devices that can connect to the internet; there is a generation that morphed in the last few years that craves information. A generation that needs to know what is happening at every second, and not just in the country but in other parts of the continent and the world at large.

Bloomberg, one of the world’s leading news agencies, recently announced the launch of Bloomberg.com/Africa, a regional edition of Bloomberg’s flagship digital destination designed to serve the continent’s growing audience of business and financial professionals. The agency that is now 26 years in serving the world with the best in cutting edge business and financial news, delivering data, news and analytics to a dynamic network of people.

Justin B. Smith, CEO Bloomberg Media addressing the delegates at the Bloomberg Africa Business Media Innovators 2016 summit.
Justin B. Smith, CEO Bloomberg Media addressing the delegates at the Bloomberg Africa Business Media Innovators 2016 summit.

Speaking during the launch in Naivasha, Bloomberg Media CEO Justin B. Smith unveiled the new edition at the second Bloomberg ‘Africa Business Media Innovators’ (ABMI) forum today which convened media, technology and business influencers from 11 countries – including nine African nations – to explore the role business and financial journalism plays in bringing accountability, transparency and investment to African economies.

The site will combine the resources of Bloomberg’s more than 100-strong editorial team across seven bureaus in Africa, as well as Bloomberg’s global team of more than 2,600 reporters and analysts. It is the latest in a series of regionally-focused editorial platforms built to serve the growing audience of business and financial consumers seeking stories on global markets told through a local lens.

Expounding further on the mission that Bloomberg has for the continent at the ABMI 2016 in Kenya, Smith said that they aim to build the leading multi-platform global business and financial media company and delivering more relevant stories to our global audiences via localized platforms is central to our strategy.

In the last year, Bloomberg launched regional sites in Europe, Asia and the Middle East, re-launched their Japanese language website and entered into an ambitious multi-platform partnership in India. The expansion that has continually grown the Bloomberg brand and leveraged its multi-platform distribution, is going to play a significant role in the growth of Africa’s economy and that of other developing economies.

What does this launch mean for Africa?

  • With the launch of this dedicated regional digital platform, Bloomberg will establish a home to showcase the best of Bloomberg’s rich content on the people, companies, politics and economies shaping the continent. This basically gives us the international platform to tell our stories the best way we know how; through our eyes. There have been several instances where our stories have been corrupted and rubbed off the continent the wrong way.
  • This will help us build our media capacity as the agency increases the number of financial journalists and reporters. One key role in advancing the growth of financial markets is accurate and timely reporting of matters business and finance.
  • Expanding and strengthening economic news coverage. A lot is happening in the continent, however, some news outlets sadly still focus on entertainment news instead of focusing news to what really matters. The launch of Bloomberg will provide a greater access to reliable and proficient data and news about the continent’s continued development

The site will be powered by Javelin, Bloomberg Digital’s new article and template design that was unveiled recently with the launch of Bloomberg Technology. Javelin provides a significantly improved user experience, reducing page load time, which is critical in delivering a faster mobile experience for a largely mobile-driven African audience. Bloomberg.com has seen impressive growth in the region in mobile – in the last three months, the site has seen +23% growth in mobile unique visitors compared to the same period last year.

The best of the new edition’s content will be fed to a dedicated Africa Twitter handle @BBGAfrica and the agency will continue to explore the addition of Africa-specific products to expand its reach to this important growing economy, and where appropriate, seek partners to help scale Bloomberg’s reach across the continent.

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