The Wall Street Journal’s China Real Time blog looks at the smaller private Chinese firms which are setting up shop across Africa, with less media attention that the huge state firms:
One such company is Touchroad International Holdings Group, a Shanghai-based private conglomerate, which is betting on Africa to drive its growth.
Africa now accounts for about 50% of the total revenue for Touchroad and affiliate Daheng Holding Group. Touchroad Chairman He Liehui, who spoke to us in Gaborone, Botswana, where he was looking over plans for a 500-hectare industrial park the group is building, is expecting that to grow.
Touchroad and Daheng, which had combined revenue of around $150 million last year, have businesses in textile manufacturing, foodstuff and textile trading, and resources development. The latter covers coal, gold, diamonds and uranium, though some of the mining explorations are still in an early stage, He said.
In the past 10 years, He estimated the group has invested about $100 million on the continent. It is active in about 20 African countries, but Botswana, one of the smallest, yet most stable and democratic countries in Africa, is where it has invested the most so far.