Into the Technology Space Enters a New East African Star: Announcing the Launch of ModernETH, Based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 26, 2007--Manny Amare, president and co-founder of Altour Management Technology (AMT), has recently announced the launch of a new technology-focused company, MODETH IT Outsource, PLC (ModernETH). Based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, with offices in London and the United States, the vision of ModernETH is two-fold: to provide technological services in Ethiopia, as well ascapitalize on the cost-effective, off-shore delivery service model for clients based in the UK and U.S., including those of AMT.
Within the Ethiopian market, ModernETH is dedicated to providing informational, agricultural and import/export technology services. Using information technology solutions, ModernETH aims to help Ethiopian businesses operate at optimal performance by streamlining strategic technology planning, architecture, engineering and provisioning. Innovations via agricultural technology will look to facilitate the modernization of Ethiopia's agricultural system, allowing Ethiopian farmers, processors and traders to become more
competitive in the marketplace. Finally, import/export technology via ModernETH's partners will enhance and improve the trade flow of Ethiopia's trade organizations.
"The task of facilitating the modernization of Ethiopia's technological extension system is far beyond the capabilities of a single institution," said Manny Amare, managing partner of ModernETH. "We plan to function as a pace-setter for the industry, developing system designs and models of professional activities. Our hope is to encourage new entrants into the field, thereby fostering further innovation in Ethiopia."
Manny brings over a decade of hands-on technology services experience to ModernETH. As co-founder and president of AMT, the New York-based information technology company, Manny is a proud member of the leadership team that saw ALTOUR become a leading global travel company, ranking among the top travel agencies in the U.S. with sales exceeding $500 million. The launch of Ethiopia-based ModernETH marks
the realization of a lifelong dream for Manny and reflects the confidence of the investor group backing the effort.
The ModernETH senior management team also includes Jacek Lewandowski, director of distributed systems for City University of New York, who holds advanced graduate degrees in computer science and electrical and electronics engineering. To this project Jacek brings extensive experience in the creation and development of broad-based solutions for information technology, specializing in virtualized tiered storage, fiber channel technologies, highly-available clustered systems, large-scale multi-processing, business continuity and
disaster prevention.

A Board of Advisors for ModernETH includes such industry leaders as Alexandre Chemla, founder and owner and Barry Noskeau, executive
vice president of ALTOUR.
For more information, please visit

Manny Amare, 212-897-5152

Ethiopian Prime Minister and Starbucks Chairman Discuss Ways to Support Ethiopian Coffee Industry

Starbucks Announces Plan to Open First Farmer Support Center in Africa in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi and Starbucks Corporation (Nasdaq: SBUX) chairman Howard Schultz today reaffirmed their commitment to making Ethiopia a leading force in the global specialty coffee marketplace. Schultz and Prime Minister Meles said their discussions reflected a deepening relationship between Ethiopia, the birthplace of coffee, and Starbucks, one of the world’s largest specialty coffee companies. The Prime Minister and Schultz discussed ways to expand the branding and marketing of Ethiopia’s world-renowned fine coffees in order to achieve better prices for farmers and improved opportunities for the millions of Ethiopians who depend on coffee for their livelihood. Schultz announced that the company will open a Starbucks Farmer Support Center in the Ethiopian capital in 2008. The facility, the first in Africa, will enable Starbucks to work collaboratively with Ethiopian farmers to raise both the quality and production of the country’s high quality specialty coffees.
“We will be working closely with Starbucks to bring badly needed investment and technology to our coffee industry, as well as brand recognition and promotion for our high-grade Arabica beans,” said Meles Zenawi, Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia. “These measures will afford Ethiopia new leverage in the global coffee market. I am extremely encouraged that Starbucks Chairman Howard Schultz shares our belief in a bright future for Ethiopia’s coffee economy.” Earlier this year, Starbucks signed a distribution, marketing and licensing agreement with Ethiopia and has agreed to assist in expanding consumer awareness of Ethiopia’s famed coffee brands -- Sidamo, Harar/Harrar and Yirgacheffe. In addition to meeting with Prime Minister Meles, Schultz and other top Starbucks executives will have a roundtable discussion with government officials, coffee farmers, exporters and other coffee stakeholders to share ideas on how to strengthen the partnership and improve the Ethiopian coffee industry. On Friday, Schultz will address leaders of the Ethiopian business community and young entrepreneurs. The Starbucks Farmer Support Center in Addis Ababa will provide resources and ongoing support to coffee communities with the goal of improving coffee quality and growing practices and increasing the number of farmers participating in the Coffee and Farmer Equity (C.A.F.E.) Practices, Starbucks’ sustainable coffee buying guidelines. “This is an extraordinary opportunity for Starbucks to continue to partner with the Ethiopian coffee community to support their efforts to produce some of the world’s finest coffees. We have always recognized that coffee farmers play a critical role in Starbucks success and we are proud to help expand the audience and demand for Ethiopian specialty coffees. Prime Minister Meles has a deep understanding of the global coffee business and is genuinely committed to forging public-private partnerships to ensure a bright future for Ethiopian farmers.” Schultz said. Between 2002 and 2006, Starbucks increased its Ethiopian coffee purchases by nearly 400 percent. Today, Ethiopian coffee can be found in nearly all of Starbucks’ U.S. stores. In 2008 Starbucks plans to intensify its promotion of Ethiopian coffees.
As part of Starbucks’ expanded economic investment in the region, Schultz also announced that the company is negotiating with an Ethiopian apparel factory to manufacture its Starbucks black aprons, worn by approximately 27,000 Coffee Masters worldwide. Starbucks also invested in school and bridge infrastructure projects in Ethiopia as well as partnered with CARE and WaterAid on projects to improve the economic and educational prospects in the coffee-growing regions of Ethiopia. Schultz is joined in Ethiopia by Cliff Burrows, president Starbucks EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa), Dub Hay, Starbucks senior vice president of Coffee & Global Procurement, and Sandra Taylor, Starbucks senior vice president of Corporate Social Responsibility. ###

A quick-witted person whose bequest is treasury of knoledge

A quick-witted person whose bequest is treasury of knoledge

Professor Kinfe Abraham

Distinguished Pan-Africanist, Professor Kinfe Abraham, who was the president of the Ethiopian International Institute for Peace and Development (EIIPD) and the Ethiopian Special Envoy to the Sudanese Peace Process, passed away on Thursday 8 November 2007 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Professor Abraham was the author of over 20 books and numerous articles on a range of topics pertaining to conflicts in the Horn of Africa, the function and role of the Inter-governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the African Union (AU). He also served as the Director-General for Political and Humanitarian Affairs and then as the Acting Deputy Executive Secretary of IGAD.

Kinfe Abraham was born in the historic Ethiopian town of Adwa, Tigray, on October 20, 1950 to Abraham Shale and Birrnesh Wasyihun and undertook his primary and secondary education at Atse Fasiledas School in Gondor town. In 1967 he commenced studies at Addis Ababa University and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Educational Administration in 1971. Shortly thereafter he left for the Research Institute for Management Science in the Netherlands where he received his Masters of Arts in Industrial Management in 1973. In 1979 he was awarded a second Masters degree, this time in American Literary Studies, from Sweden’s Uppsala University. Dr. Abraham followed this up with a doctorate in Race and International Relations from the same institution in 1982. He developed a wide-ranging degree of expertise in the areas of education, economics, development, politics and international relations.

Professor Abraham was a staunch advocate of African economic and political emancipation, and undertook a range of projects for international organisations, including the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA). More recently, in his capacity as the Chief Political Advisor and Special Envoy to the Sudanese Peace Process, Professor Kinfe led the Ethiopian effort to secure peace in Sudan. He has also been actively engaged in leading and supporting mediation efforts in the Horn of Africa.

Professor Abraham’s experiences enabled him to publish a range of books on the conflicts in the region including Sudan: The Politics of War and Peace; The Horn of Africa: Conflicts and Conflict Mediation; Somalia Calling; and Ethio-Eritrean History and War. His interest in supporting and enhancing the processes of regional and continental integration in Africa is encapsulated in his seminal work entitled The African Quest: the Transition from OAU to AU and NEPAD. In this book he outlined the historical evolution of the Pan-African movement from its inception, and analysed the obstacles and challenges to implementing its ideals. He also discusses the opportunities that Africa should embrace in order to accelerate economic and political integration.

Professor Abraham’s interests in development encouraged him to pen a critique of the emerging global order and corruption in Africa in a book entitled The Missing Millions: Why and How Africa is Under-Developed. His credentials as a Pan-Africanist were illustrated by his committed advocacy of continental integration. Some of his earliest work documented, analysed, and contrasted black nationalism in the United States and Africa, and led to the publication of The Politics of Black Nationalism: From Harlem to Soweto. It is no surprise that he was a sought-after speaker who delivered speeches at international events and institutions in countries ranging from the US, UK, Switzerland, Sweden, Japan, Israel, Norway, China Austria, India, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Sudan, Nigeria, Morocco, Egypt, Kenya, and Djibouti. He had also chaired and convened several international conferences on themes like international and regional security, conflict management, economic integration, transboundary resources, the hydro-politics of the Nile River Basin, the Ethio-Arab and Middle Eastern relations, NEPAD, and the African Union. The late Professor Abraham, who is survived by his wife, daughter and son, will undoubtedly command a place in Africa’s intellectual history, and his status and legacy as a leading Pan-Africanist is secure. The Africa World Journal (AWJ) described Professor Abraham as one of the leading thinkers of Africa. He will remain an inspiration to current and future African thinkers. His prolific research output and his rich intellectual life have set the standard for Africa’s aspiring young and emerging scholars.