Ambassador Harold Doley Jr, Chairman of Sagarmatha Technologies Ltd International Advisory Board (IAB), and Paul Lamontagne, Chairman of Sagarmatha Technologies, photographed in October 2017 on the announcement of the IAB. Photo: Ian Landsberg/African News Agency (ANA)
CAPE TOWN  -Tiso Blackstar published an article in Business Day yesterday on the front page that can - charitably - be described as disingenuous, or purposely deceiving.

In reference to the alleged rushed timetable for the listing - the JSE rules are clear. The JSE requires a five-working-day book-building period to market and to investors.

Sagarmatha received JSE approval on Wednesday, March 28, thus initiating the five-day book building or marketing period, which closes on Thursday, April 5.

The facts are as follows:

* "Sagarmatha is the next emerging markets technology platform growth and success story, with e-commerce, syndicated news and business content, digital media, and technology ventures in one African-owned and managed integrated group.” (Ambassador Harold Doley jr; chairperson, International Advisory Board, Sagarmatha Technologies Limited.)

* Jim Rogers, the co-founder of the Quantum Fund and a member of Sagarmatha’s International Advisory Board, states: “Sagarmatha’s e-commerce offerings are Africa’s own Amazon, Tencent and Alibaba.

“In syndicated news content it is Africa’s answer to Reuters and to Bloomberg for business content. In digital news it is an African alternative to Quartz, Daily Beast, and NYT Digital.

“Sagarmatha is unique in that it is all of the above combined into one group and much more, including technology ventures while being authentically African. It is well positioned to succeed in Africa and beyond.

“Therefore, I will be proud to be involved, since Sagarmatha can assist Africans to achieve prosperity and embrace the global marketplace opportunity presented through technology.”

* Sagarmatha represents the new Africa, a company that is proudly African and infused with African talent. Its proprietary-developed platforms and technologies allow it to compete head-on with multinationals operating on the continent, and in their own countries.

* Sagarmatha believes that the future is right here, that Africa cannot afford to hand over control and management of information, content and commerce to the world’s most powerful technology companies.

If this happens it could change the narratives of more than one billion African people. Rather, we believe in writing new stories - together.

* Sagarmatha believes that Africa must use its immensely gifted young talent, to develop platforms, systems and populate these with consumers, thus using the opportunity to make a quantum leap into the fourth industrial revolution.

* As to the question of valuation as alluded to in the article by Business Day, Sagarmatha Technologies Ltd was valued by the following world-leading valuators:

* University of the District of Columbia School of Business & Public Administration, led by professors experienced with technology valuations in the US.

* Redwood Valuation Partners, a world-class technology valuation company from San Francisco. Redwood’s credentials encompass more than 500 to 1000 technology companies, including Fitbit, Visa and WhatsApp.

Selwyn Lewis, an astute international financier, also supports a focus on Africa and, given the credentials of the valuations, has, through The Selwyn Lewis Family Trust, invested significantly in Sagarmatha Technologies.

It is important for our readers to note that the current portfolio of businesses in Sagarmatha is similar to global Multisided Platform Technology Companies (MSPTs) in their early stages - think the likes of Amazon that made significant losses in its first 15 years and until today still hasn’t paid a dividend. Yet Amazon is valued at $700billion.

There are countless other examples of household company names that are in a similar situation.

In summary:

Sagarmatha allows Africans to scale the highest peak of technology as equal partners and to take ownership of their own platforms through innovation.

Sagarmatha is the Nepalese word for Mount Everest. The name has been chosen because it speaks to an ambition to scale the heights of multisided platforms of ambition and wealth creation for the continent of Africa.

I am convinced that informed readers will realise that Sagarmatha is more than just a media company.

It is about changing the future of Africa by connecting, engaging and driving the digital economy.