Published on 16 June 2017

How Iskandar Safa sells his ships in Africa

After Europe and the Arab World, Africa has become Iskandar Safa's new favourite hunting ground. The 65-year-old Lebanese businessman, who heads the powerful holding company, Privinvest, which includes among its subsidiaries Constructions mécaniques de Normandie (CMN) and the Abu Dhabi Mar shipyard, wants to add the African continent to his maritime empire.

Through Privinvest, Safa is currently offering different African countries international loans to enable them to restructure their debts and, by the same token, buy ships built in his yards. A first contract has been agreed with Mozambique and negotiations have been started with Angola and Congo-Brazzaville. The development of his business, which has so far been smooth, has run into its first legal difficulties, however, and these are hampering the group's financing activities. Sea "lord" Safa's African activities have been under scrutiny in recent months by the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC). At the same time, he has since December 2016 been involved in arbitration proceedings before the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) over his activities in Greece.

Indigo Publications' journalists have been following Safa's career for years. They have uncovered the contacts networks, behind-the-scenes wheeler-dealing and the secrets which underpin it. You can read all about them in this special report which Africa Intelligence has produced in collaboration with Intelligence Online. Following on from this report on his African networks, you can also access our in-depth review of Iskandar Safa and his inner circle in our Insiders series here.

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