While the mine operators and the oil and gas drillers have long been alive to Africa's possibilities, a rising "middle class" means an opportunity for consumer goods companies. With consumer spending set to rocket to $2.2 trillion in less than 20 years, according to the African Development Bank, there has been no shortage of multinationals making their move into sub-Saharan Africa.
Unilever, whose biggest brands in the region include Sunlight soaps and Stork spreads, plans to nearly double its revenues from Africa within five years. The continent (excluding north Africa) was recently made one of the company's eight operating regions across the world, headed by Frank Braeken, who says he has seen "a tremendous surge in investor interest". Asda's owner Wal-Mart has recently spent $2.4bn on a majority stake in the South African retailer Massmart while earlier in the year Diageo, which already sells more Guinness in Nigeria than in Ireland, splashed out almost £150m on Ethiopian brewer Meta Abo.