In a shock poll out today by Quinnipiac, Vermont senator Bernie Sanders leads former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Iowa.
Sanders leads Clinton by one point- 41% to 40%.
It is the first time that Sanders has been ahead of Clinton in a major polling survey in the Hawkeye state.
“Sen. Bernie Sanders has become the Eugene McCarthy of 2016,” Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll said in a press release today. “He is the candidate of the Democratic left, against his own party’s bosses and their prized presidential candidate, Secretary Hillary Clinton.
9-10-2015 Quinnipiac Poll:
The new Iowa survey was conducted between August 27 and September 8 and sampled 832 likely Democratic caucusgoers.
From the press release:
“There is a wide gender gap among Democrats today as Sanders leads Clinton 49 – 28 percent among men, with 16 percent for Biden, while Clinton leads Sanders 49 – 35 percent among women, with 9 percent for Biden.”
Cover Photo Credit: Phil Roeder/Flickr (CC By 2.0)
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About the AuthorRich Robinson is the CEO and publisher of Rise News. He is also a journalist and a native of Miami. Robinson graduated from the University of Alabama and can be followed on Twitter @RichRobMiami.
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Africa’s First Billion Dollar Start Up Is A Bet On The Rise Of The Continent’s Middle Class. But Is It A Smart Bet?
For decades, the narrative around African business has been pretty negative. But things are changing as demonstrated by the recent achievement by the Africa Internet Group– as it became the first ever African based “Unicorn” start up company.
Africa Internet Group just received an $85 million investment, valuing the company at over $1 billion, and making it a “Unicorn”.
AIG is essentially Silicon Valley, but all packed into one business.
They invest in and help manage over 30 African companies like Easy Taxi, Jumia, and Lamudi, which mimic the Uber’s, Amazon’s, and Zillow’s of the world.
Glassdoor reviews from former employees of AIG give it a 3.2 rating out of 5 with 21 reviews. The pros largely coalesced around the work: always busy and challenging.
The cons all focused on the same issues surrounding management, with every negative review either highlighting a lack of communication or unrealistic expectations for their subordinates.
These complaints about management seemed to be shared by ownership, as last December, the company began to lay off upper level staff left and right, with one of its largest companies, Jumia, firing over 300 workers in Nigeria, its largest market.
It is not unusual for one startup to go through upheaval like this, but when many companies all operating under the same umbrella go through the same issues, it is a bit worrisome.
However, AXA and Orange would not have invested in AIG at the valuation they did unless it was satisfied with its executive team, so one would think that this massive shakeup is largely a good thing for the company.
Given the timing of the overhaul and the subsequent transaction, this management purge was most likely a contingency for these large firms’ financing, because ultimately, they are not investing in AIG, but in the rising African middle class.
The common theme amongst AIG’s portfolio is e-commerce, as they have laid the foundation of their company on the emerging proletariat.
The size and the economic maturity of the middle class is the subject of fierce debate, as companies like Nestle serve as cautionary tales; their billion dollar expansion hit a rut and was forced to scale back its African workforce by 15% once returns proved to be smaller than expected.
WATCH: Inside a Africa Internet Group Office in Lagos, Nigeria.
Much of the investment in Africa has been based around the notion that one third of Africans are “middle class,” which emerged from a 2011 paper from the African Development Bank Group which stated that the middle class had tripled over the last 30 years.
However, the AfDB defined it as Africans living off of $2 to $20 in purchasing power per day, with it divided into three separate tiers which further muddied the certainty surrounding the definition of “middle class.”
Standard Bank released a study last September that looked at 11 African countries which account for over half the continent’s GDP, and found the size of their middle class to be 15 million people, or about 300 million less than AfDB estimated for the entire continent.
The middle class of the largest African country by GDP, Nigeria, is estimated at 11%, with 86% of all Africans reportedly falling under “low income.”
The Pew Research Center provides extra support to this assertion as they estimate that just 6% of Africans qualify as “middle class,” which they define as living off of $10 to $20 per day.
90% of Africans are estimated to still live off of less than $10 per day according to Pew.
However, even though the data seems to hint that investors may be too bullish, it does not mean that they should reverse course and become bearish on the many different African economies.
Capital is still flowing into the continent, as foreign direct investment is up over 12% since 2008.
Additionally, some of the struggles companies like Nestle experienced could be due more to cultural misunderstandings than a lack of disposable income across Africa.
“There was no presumption [from the AfDB] that this middle class would exhibit Western modes in terms of consumption of food formula for middle-class babies [Nestlé] nor for whisky [Diaego],” Kayizzi-Mugerwa, one of the chief economists for the AfDB said. “In the latter case, Africans have always had a partiality for beer − irrespective of class – and the beer companies are doing roaring business.”
Many African countries are still dealing with structural issues that go back centuries, as Egypt’s inflation is 210th in the world due to the instability that has arisen over the last 5 years.
— AIG (@Africa_IG) July 17, 2015
Nigeria needs to modernize its workforce as 70% work in agriculture, yet farming accounts for just 20% of its GDP.
South Africa, which remains the model for many African countries, has 66% of its workforce comprising the services industry, which accounts for 67.4% of its GDP, yet the rest of the continent’s labor pool is much closer to Nigeria than its most modernized nation at its southernmost tip.
The historic investment in Africa Internet Group must be seen as a larger investment in Africa as a whole, because without a modernized Africa, the e-commerce that AIG provides would have no market for buyers or sellers.
Africa is still an emerging economy, but it has shed many of the 3rd world caricatures that the West has forced upon it over the years, with Sacha Poignonnec, CEO of Africa Internet Group providing a mission statement for the company that could be construed as one for the entire continent as well:
“We want to be profitable but we are very long-term oriented. Amazon is a great model to look at. They have a great valuation, they have a great customer base. Everyone one is confident that Amazon has a great future but they are still yet to make money.”
RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in public affairs. You can write for usCover Photo Credit: David Stanley/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)Post Views: 723
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To hear him tell it, no one is a bigger critic of Obamacare than Florida Senator and presidential candidate Marco Rubio. Except, that is, when he’s making decisions about his health insurance plan. Rubio campaign staffers confirmed to NBC late Thursday that he continues to accept a $10,000 federal subsidy reserved for congressional members under an… Read MorePost Views: 687
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By John Massey
Chairman of the Standing Committee of the People’s National Congress, Zhang Dejiang spent three days in Hong Kong, between May 17th and May 19th.
Zhang is a member of the Chinese Politburo (the central governing organization of the CCP and therefore the country), and chief official in affairs related to both Macau and Hong Kong.
Zhang was met with some resistance from democracy advocates, including the youth led organization Demosistō.
Activists took actions to voice their displeasure with Zhang, such as displaying large banners with pro democratic messages.
Large scale protests were largely foiled by the impressive security measures taken, which ranged from utilizing divers and scores of police, to confiscating yellow towels and umbrellas; symbols of the 2014 Occupy Movement that gripped Hong Kong.
The most dramatic of these protests was a premeditated “ambush” of Zhang’s convoy outside his hotel.
Several Demosistō members took part in the attempt, standing on the side of the highway or in the median. The police response was swift.
— Joshua Wong Chi-fung (@joshuawongcf) May 17, 2016
The activists were detained for a short while, reportedly receiving further abuse, as shown below.
They brought Wong (who earlier told me they were trying to stage ‘HK’s Tank Man’) to the ground after this pic.twitter.com/TRSlJDUXH8
— Nash Jenkins (@pnashjenkins) May 19, 2016
Though all the activists were released today, the trouble seems to have not ended in relation to this incident.
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Demosistō’s Facebook page reports that five activists related to this display had their residences raided by police.
Zhang has been described as a rising star of the CCP by the Brookings Institute, having studied at Kim Il-Sung University, and been integral in Chinese policy towards that country in the early 1990s.
During Zhang’s visit, he made claims that the CCP was not attempting to subvert Hong Kong’s unique identity, or the principle of “one country, two systems”.
Despite these reassurances to the group of banquet invitees, security officials do not seem to think these arguments are compelling to a significant number of Hong Kongers, due to the significant police presence, and the gluing of bricks to the sidewalk to prevent their use as improvised weapons.
Are you in Hong Kong and have a tip about this story? Send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
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