Angola-based investment firm ABO Capital recently announced that it has acquired a well-known Turkish school situated in the Samba district, just south of the capital Luanda. Complexo Escolar Privado Internacional (CEPI), formerly Colégio Esperança Internacional, provides education for pre-school through high school students. How we made it in Africa asked Zandre Campos, CEO of ABO Capital, about opportunities in Angola’s private education sector. Here are slightly-edited excerpts.
Angola has investment opportunities in a variety of industries; why did you specifically decide to invest in the education sector?
I chose education as one of my main areas of focus because I believe it is the cornerstone of success. A quality education system leads to skilled workers and creates economic opportunities. An educated workforce enables economic diversification, which is a key component in developing a prosperous economy on the African continent. Being a father to two children also influenced my decision to invest in education. I want to provide my children and all the other students with the strongest educational opportunities possible. We must provide our youth with a better future by investing in teachers, prioritsing universities and focusing on student needs. An increase in quality teaching, coupled with a growth in universities and attention to student needs, gives Africa the potential to become an education powerhouse.
I decided to purchase CEPI because of its history of education excellence for students from pre-school through high school. I want to continue providing students with a strong education and endless opportunities so they can pursue their dreams and make Africa and the world a better place.
What other business opportunities are there in Angola’s education sector?
ABO Capital has plans to open up three additional schools in the near future. We believe there is a lot of opportunity for businesses to invest in education throughout Africa. When businesses make investments in education, students are given the opportunity to excel. For example, our investment in CEPI continues to support those students.
Angola has been hard hit by the fall in the oil price. How has this impacted the overall business environment?
While the oil crisis is difficult, I believe that it will strengthen the Angolan economy. There are several investment opportunities in the country, and on the continent, and the crisis forces business to look to other sectors. Developing other sectors, such as tourism and agriculture, will greatly benefit the economy.
Besides the education industry, if you had to single out one other sector in Angola that you believe holds the greatest potential for investment, which one would it be?
I believe there are several sectors that hold great potential. ABO Capital invests in companies in the healthcare, technology, energy, transportation, hospitality, education and real estate sectors throughout Africa.
I believe it is important to invest in healthcare because it is imperative to provide quality healthcare to Africa and the people around the world. Currently, ABO Capital invests in Sphera Global Healthcare. Sphera is a unique medical company that specialises in medical services and brings together carefully selected high-level hospitals, clinics, doctors and technologies.
Sphera is developing communication technologies, including video conferencing, telemedicine, virtual platforms, apps, and mobile-health. Besides improving communication, the technologies also guarantee the delivery of quality healthcare and reduce unnecessary hospital or clinical visits. mHealth is a mobile app that provides consultation 24/7 for pediatric and general medicine. It stimulates engagement, maximises preventive disease discussions, increases efficiency and reduces the cost of care when the number of unnecessary visits is reduced. Most importantly, more people have access to quality healthcare services.