Marhaba!

Happy 2013 and all the best to you, your loved ones, and your businesses in the New Year.

We thought it fitting to start our January issue looking at Egypt as it was on the 25th of this very month in 2011 that Tahrir Square saw one of the largest gatherings of protesters in a generation.

The revolutionary change seen across the North African region during this time is one of those game changing events that will stick with you for the rest of your life.

So naturally, we wanted to dive into Egypt today and see how things had progressed over the last two years. Little did we anticipate that while researching the story and interviewing our experts, things would deteriorate politically as much as they have. At the time of writing this, Egyptians are protesting on the streets again.

Those for and against the Muslim Brotherhood are at heads over a controversial decree giving President Morsi “ultimate powers” and then a draft of the constitution was “rushed” out, causing liberals, Christians and everyone else who is not pro-Morsi to fear for their rights and freedoms.

Perhaps it sounds like I’m sensationalising this? Reading through the live-tweets that have been coming out of Cairo’s streets, there seems to be a real palpable concern that the Islamists in power will go too far. Many fear of what could become to democratic Egypt. It’s not hard to imagine why there might be fear, an example of a transitional government that went from secular to Islamist happened in our not-to-distant past in Iran.

Again, of course there’s a level of subjectivity to all of this. In another example of looking at changemakers this issue, we got an exclusive interview with Mara Group’s founder and managing director, Ashish Thakkar. What an incredibly pleasant guy. And inspiring too. We had the chance to dig into how he went from a 15-year-old selling computers to owning a billion-dollar business conglomerate as well as pry some tips from an entrepreneur who’s walked the walk.

We encourage you to engage with our conversations online on Twitter (@AfricanBJournal) or via email at anastasiat@georgemedia.com. If you know of an interesting initiative in Africa, a notable member of the business community we should highlight, or a company that deserves notice, please reach out. We want to tell your stories because knowledge shared is knowledge gained.

I hope you enjoy this issue,

Anastasia Tubanos

Editor