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It’s me, DJ Instant Noodles (Onion chicken flavor, obviously – I’m not a philistine). Whose belly do I have to fondle to get us to start speaking programming languages? If the luddites are right, and computers are going to steal our jobs, kill our cattle, and burn down our villages, we might as well learn to speak to them in the languages they (or their compilers) understand. ?

Meanwhile, someone translated Davido’s smash hit, ‘If‘ from Engibberish to Javascript and it’s the most awesome thing I’ve ever seen (and I’ve seen The Lion King).

(Yes, I know Javascript is not really a programming language, since it doesn’t get complied, but will you die if you stop being an insufferable nitpick?)

Today’s gossip.

1. ?? What’s that sound? ? We are hearing (unconfirmed) reports that Nigerian telcos, Globacom and Etisalat might be getting married soon. Specifically, that Mike Adenuga, Chairman of Globacom is considering acquiring the latter. There are a couple of reasons why a deal like this might make sense:

a. Globacom can significantly close the gap between itself (37.3m subs) and MTN (60.3m subs) by acquiring Etisalat (~18m subs), currently the smallest player in terms of subscriber count.

b. Revenue from voice and SMS has been on the decline, and macro-economic conditions have not been great, so consolidation is expected. Each telco ends up spending less money per customer if they share infrastructure. This is especially interesting for Glo because Etisalat’s customers seem to *me* like some of the most “valuable” in the country. Their data tariff per GB is the highest among the big 4, while Glo’s is the cheapest. Owning Etisalat’s 18m subs instantly increases their ARPU (avg. revenue per user).

+ Related: if the rumors turn out to be true, then you can bet that the smaller (tier two) players like Smile, Spectranet, Ntel, etc will do all they can to block the deal (they are already under lots of pressure). Globacom can afford to offer consumers the lowest data tariffs, because they own fibre-optic infrastructure and can leverage sunk costs to gain market share. Acquiring Etisalat puts them in an even stronger position.

c. Etisalat is in dire straits; they defaulted on a $1.2 bn loan and are currently in takeover negotiations with about 12 Nigerian banks. They took the loan in a foreign currency, and the Naira losing so much value since 2013 means they have to run faster to stand still. It is well.

2. ?? Ewa Agoyin Online just launched to deliver…Ewa Agoyin to people who are into that sort of thing. (For the uninitiated, Ewa Agoyin is boiled beans and pepper sauce, often eaten with bread…yeah, I’m hungry now.) They only deliver in Lagos, between 10am and 3pm, so check them out if you want.

3. ⚡️ Akon is considering an IPO of the Chinese-funded solar power initiative he started 3 years ago. Bloomberg reports that they have completed 203,200 small scale solar projects since launch. The Akon Lighting Africa project, as it is called, has expanded operations to Brazil, with China and India on the list. Link.

4. The Afrobytes Tech Conference in Paris is starting today. Link.

Afrobytes is an annual international Tech Conference connecting businesses and technology leaders, founders, investors, and policy experts with the fastest-growing African tech startups. The inaugural conference will take place in Paris on June 8-9, 2017, at Le Medef. Find out more and register here. Get 25 percent off with the code TECHCABAL.

Also interesting…

+ African startups can now apply for TechCrunch Startup Battlefield Africa. Link.

+ Kenya has the 14th fastest mobile internet speeds (1st is UK). Link.

+ Jumia Food Kenya did a thing and now, they’re telling us about it. Meh.

+ Guessing the teacher’s password. Link.

Upcoming events

Paris: Afrobytes Tech Conference 2017, June 8th. Link

Lagos: Dribble Meetup, June 10th. Link

Lagos: forLoopWomen: A Successful Female Dev, June 10th. Link

Lagos: Explore the Republic, June 10th. Link

Deadline: World Bank’s XL Africa application, June 12th. Link

Devcenter is a verified community of African software developers. Our developers are tested with the same methods as Google and Facebook. Build your next technology product with us. Link

Thank you for reading.

Have a great day.

Osarumen Osamuyi Author

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