Cameroun - Russie. Cameroon couple living 'Russian dream' with music and burger empire Mercredi le 23 Octobre 2019 Société Imprimer Envoyer cet article à Nous suivre sur facebook Nous suivre sur twitter Revoir un Programme TV Grille des Programmes TV Où Vendre Où Danser Où Dormir au Cameroun
Decked out in gold jewellery and high-end fashion, Walter and Cindy Tchassem descend on a Moscow fast-food joint escorted by bodyguards report AFP.


Both originally from Cameroon, the couple are at the centre of a music and restaurant business empire in Russia.

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"People can't understand how we did it, it's unique," Walter, 37, tells AFP at an outlet of the couple's Black Star burger chain on Moscow's Novy Arbat commercial strip.

Union can be a tricky place to do business, but Walter says he hasn't run into any problems

"But I always say to them: When you believe in yourself and you work hard, anything is possible."

As President Vladimir Putin hosts African leaders this week for the first ever Russia-Africa summit, the Tchassems are a high-profile example of African entrepreneurial success in the country.

The son of a Cameroonian diplomat in Moscow, Walter has lived in Russia for 25 years and taken Russian citizenship.

He co-founded Black Star in 2006 with two school friends, hip-hop artist Timati and businessman Pavel Kuryanov.

Originally a music label, Black Star has grown into a major brand, expanding into street-wear and restaurants, with about 100 shops and burger chain outlets throughout the former Soviet Union and plans to expand into Europe.

Walter says it's hardly surprising Moscow is looking to build ties with fast-growing Africa.

"In the long-term it's Africa that will be the winner, because Russia offers a lot of opportunities," he says.

The ex-Soviet Union can be a tricky place to do business, but Walter says he hasn't run into any problems.

"Our business is based on a lifestyle, it can go into any country because it's not political," he says, while still praising Russia's Vladimir Putin as "the best president on the planet".

'New generation of Russians'

Cindy, 32, focuses on public relations for the firm, while supporting an orphanage in Cameroon's economic capital Douala and planning to launch a charitable foundation.

She moved to Moscow in 2012 to join Walter after they met and married in Paris and the couple now have two sons aged four and six.

"You can build your own business in Russia by the age of 30, there is the potential for very fast success," she says.

"You can easily get rich no matter how old you are," Cindy says, though she admits Russia's "very macho" culture can make it difficult for women entrepreneurs.

Despite the racist attacks that for years made headlines in Russia, the couple says they have never suffered from racism.

"I have never felt that; the new generation of Russians travels, they understand things," Walter says.

In fact, he says: "I think it is less difficult here than in a country that colonised Africa."

The couple's business has helped by them become social media stars.

Together they have more than 400,000 subscribers on Instagram, where they post glamourous pictures of trips on yachts or private jets.

Walter says they hope their success can be inspiring.

"We want to make other young Africans dream," he says.

"There is this idea that the African is born to suffer, but this isn't true, you have to believe in yourself and work!"

The couple are often seen in colourful outfits from top designers, and Walter admits that fashion "is kind of my drug".

"I love it, I won't hide that I spend an enormous amount on it," he says.

His wife laughs. "He's a fashion addict!"




(Fin du match)


1 - 0


1 - 1

 CHAN 2021 | Classement

Groupe A

1 Mali 7
2 Cameroun  5
3 Burkina Faso  4
4 Zimbabwe 0

Groupe B

1 RDC 5
2 Congo  4
3 Niger  3
4 Libye  2

Groupe C

1 Maroc 4
2 Togo 3
3 Rwanda  2
4 Ouganda  1

Groupe D

1 Guinée  4
2 Zambie  4
3 Tanzanie  3
4 Namibie  0
CHAN 2021 | Matchs
16 Jan 2021    
Cameroun 1 - 0
Mali 1 - 0 Burkina Faso
17 Jan 2021    
Libye 0 - 0
RDC 1 - 0 Congo
18 Jan 2021    
Maroc 1 - 0 Togo
Rwanda 0 - 0 Ouganda
19 Jan 2021    
Zambie 2 - 0 Tanzanie
Guinée 3 - 0 Namibie
20 Jan 2021    
Cameroun 1 - 1 Mali
Burkina Faso 3 - 1 Zimbabwe
21 Jan 2021    
Libye 1 - 1 RDC
Congo 1 - 1 Niger
22 Jan 2021    
Maroc 0 - 0
Ouganda 1 - 2 Togo
23 Jan 2021    
Zambie 1 - 1 Guinée
Namibie 0 - 1 Tanzanie
24 Jan 2021    
Burkina Faso 0 - 0 Cameroun
Zimbabwe 0 - 1 Mali
25 Jan 2021    
Congo 1 - 0 Libye
Niger 1 - 1 RDC
26 Jan 2021    
Ouganda 20h00 Maroc
Togo 20h00 Rwanda
27 Jan 2021    
Namibie 20h00 Zambie
Tanzanie 20h00 Guinée
30 Jan 2021    
 Mali 17h00 Congo 
 RDC  20h00 Cameroun 
01 Fev 2021    
03 Fev 2021
06 Fev 2021    
07 Fev 2021    


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