By Andrew Sardanis
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Extra resources for A Venture in Africa: The Challenges of African Business
The bus is a vital link in Africa, transporting people and merchandise between villages and towns and its arrival and departure creates scenes of vibrant activity. The bus in the picture was manufactured by PEW, one of the ITM companies, in Blantyre, Malawi. 15 A VE NTU R E I N AF R I CA Banda remained authoritarian, eccentric and capricious throughout his life. In the late 1960s he issued a decree banning blue jeans, miniskirts and long hair. There were hilarious scenes at the Blantyre airport when international visitors were forced to have a haircut and change clothes.
And some competitors viewed our policy with derision; but our many years of successful operations have proved that it was sound. ’ I remember the comments of a Zambian friend and partner since 1958 who was in charge of our Zambian operations in the 1970s when I proposed to transfer the manager of Mazembe to supervise all the Caterpillar dealerships out of New York. ‘Good luck,’ he said. ‘Take him, but watch him. He is a big spender. ’ I often agreed with the Zambians’ view of some expatriates, an attitude that my deputy in London considered ‘disgusting’ and said so to me many times.
The plan worked Working in remote areas, where logistical support was paramount, became the hallmark of ITM, as we proved with our Angolan diamond mining operations. And river bed mining first required diversion of the river Cuango by the construction of large dykes and dams. 28 AN G O LA: D IAM O N D S AN D … TH R EATS surprisingly well, though, for about a year, but the enthusiasm could not last and inevitably the industry was destroyed. We did agree to run Sorrel under contract with the Angolan government, which had nationalised it together with every other business and property in Angola.
A Venture in Africa: The Challenges of African Business by Andrew Sardanis