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Market Commentary | The week that was

The Financial Times, in collaboration with Statista, has released its annual ranking of Africa's 100 fastest-growing companies. This ranking is based on the company's revenue's Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) between 2018 and 2021. The Covid-19 pandemic has increased the move to online services, with fast-growing companies in sectors providing digital facilities in finance, payments, trade facilitation, and healthcare. The three fastest-growing businesses in South Africa, are reported to be in 6th place, Deimos, with Bluesky Digital Solutions in 12th, and Northam Platinum Holding in 23rd place in Africa.

Deimos Cloud is a tech-oriented business that provides cloud and software services. Revenue increased from $500,000 to $9.5 million, a CAGR of 177%.

Information Technology and Software company Bluesky Digital Solutions reported a CAGR of 94.6%. They specialize in cloud computing services, custom application development, architecture, configuration, business analysis, training, and deployment management.

The third South-African company, Northam Platinum Holdings, recorded a CAGR of 62.9% in revenue from $587.5 million to $2.1 billion between 2018 and 2021.

Other mining companies that are included in the ranking are Impala Platinum Holdings (29th), Sibanye Stillwater (33rd), Pan African Resources (49th), and African Rainbow Minerals (51st).

The plan to get Tourism South Africa back on track: The newly appointed Minister of Tourism, Patricia de Lille, said the tourism sector has many issues that need to be addressed: “My priority is clear, let’s get to over 21 million tourists’ arrivals before 2030." De Lille confirmed that she has been given four priority areas to focus on by President Cyril Ramaphosa. The first area is the tourism sector's main plan, which focuses on the world’s needs and the role that the South African government needs to play in advancing tourism. The second area is to improve e-Visa turnaround times. Thirdly, the focus will be on reforming, simplifying, and improving license processing times for tourism operators. De Lille’s final focus area from Ramaphosa is to ensure black ownership through the implementation of the Tourism Equity Fund (TEF). She will also prioritize the improvement of the infrastructure of state-owned tourist attractions and national parks.

Markets: The rand was under pressure throughout Monday as the dollar rallied. On Monday, 17 April, the rand was trading at R18.06/$, R19.86/€, and R22.44/£. Brent crude is trading at $86.28 a barrel. Despite being on a rate-hiking cycle, a Fed official said that the U.S. central bank has made little headway in returning to its inflation target of 2% and would need to move interest rates higher still.

Looking at the week ahead: This week the domestic data calendar is light. Data will be released on the residential, mining, and manufacturing sectors. The major data release for the week will be U.S. inflation after the better-than-predicted jobs report that came out on Friday, which showed higher hiring and pay gains.

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