Africa and the United Kingdom: challenges and opportunities to expand UK investments

Research reports and studies

January 2020 Maximiliano Mendez-Parra, Sherillyn Raga and Lily Somme

This report highlights the opportunities and challenges facing UK firms when investing or conducting business in Africa, with a particular emphasis on the non-extractive sector. It highlights the mutual benefits for Africa, in terms of economic transformation and growth, and for the UK, in diversifying investments in rapidly expanding markets. The study draws from data on UK investments in Africa, and information provided by more than 75 UK companies operating in Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa. read more

Horn of Africa: Guul Group to assist with Asoko Insight digital DealRoom

Asoko Insight Investment platform

Somalilandsun:”Asoko Insight is facilitating a deal room for the Department of International Trade (DIT) of the UK government to put African companies in touch with British investors.

The digital DealRoom will take advantage of Asoko’s unique data acquisition model and unrivalled corporate database of over 100,000 private African companies to support the UK’s partnership with Africa to build a secure and prosperous future for all our citizens.

This digital deal room launched at the UK-Africa Investment Summit. You may read more about Asoko’s partnership with DIT here: read more

Guul-Group Bridges Investor- Investment Opportunity Gap – Featured on Horn Newspaper

Horn Newspaper feature
Horn Newspaper feature

Guul Group Horn paper feature


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Page 2


Guul Group
Take a risk with Guul Group

Guul-Group Bridges Investor- Investment Opportunity Gap

“We have facilitated lucrative deals for foreign and Diaspora investors within various sectors in Somaliland” – Mahamed Liban

By: Yusuf M Hasan

HARGEISA (Somalilandsun) – Consultancy services by Guul Group Company has made blind investment in the country a thing of the past.

Foreign and Diaspora investors are now making knowledgeable decisions through services provided by Guul Group-GG company registered in Somaliland with partners in the UK.

According to the Chief Executive Officer Mr. Mahamed-Guled Liban, his GG Company has so far facilitated numerous investment services to Diaspora Somalilanders as well as foreigners wishing to invest in-country. read more

Somaliland’s returning Diaspora proving to be a dynamo for development


Somalis living in Somaliland are rightly proud of their track record on democracy over the last couple of decades. This last week has seen yet another significant milestone, with local elections passing off peacefully and with a high turnout. International observers, including representatives from Progressio ( ) and Somaliland Focus ( ) have been favourably impressed by the degree of democratic engagement and minimal irregularities. Somaliland’s continuing spirit of calm, is just one of a number of reasons why economic activity has increased apace in recent years. The country’s strategic location coupled a general improvement in the international climate locally has helped foster a greater appreciation of Somaliland’s potential. Diaspora communities in the UK, USA, the Netherlands and Scandinavia, as well as Australia and New Zealand have maintained strong ties and there is increasing evidence of Somalis being eager to return to play a constructive role. Private enterprise is fast proving to be the dynamo of the economy. Mahamed Liban, the founder of Guul Group ( is typical of the bright, articulate members of the Somali Diaspora who are returning in droves, eager to share their knowledge and skills. Liban, one of an increasing number of British Somali entrepreneurs, is upbeat about the prospects for his Hargeisa-based company; “We have already been approached by a number of foreign investors, namely from Australia and the UK and Guul Group is well placed to facilitate commercial activity by drawing up on market insight, local knowledge and contacts. The company provides investment opportunities with the aim of attracting and working with foreign investors and strategic alliance partners on projects in Somaliland and potentially other Horn of Africa markets.” In common with other returning members of the Diaspora he recognizes that even as a Somali there is need for considerable readjustment; “Culture is enormously significant and so for someone who has been away for two decades, much will seem alien and so a measured approach is best.”. Liban is candid when talking about the challenges new businesses face; “…many returnees and foreigners have a distinct lack of local knowledge and market insight. It is important to remember that what might work or sell in Europe or the US will not necessarily work or sell here.” The fact that Somalis are happy to embrace new technology is an added draw and this will be further encouraged by the fact that the country is currently being connected to fibre optic cables. Economic development is well under way and there is increasing body of evidence to suggest that many foreign, Diaspora and local investors are going to achieve that thing they are all seeking, namely ‘Guul’ (meaning ‘success’ in Somali). read more