If you were wondering what Akon’s been up to lately, well he now owns his own city in western Africa. Akon’s quest to create the world’s first city based 100 percent on digital currency appears to be coming to fruition, as the singer is now the official owner of Akon City in Senegal.
In July 2018, Senegal’s president Macky Sall gave Akon 2,000 acres of land near the country’s new airport, but it wasn’t official until this week, when he posted a photo of himself holding the signed agreement on Instagram.
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The Senegalese singer and producer has long been involved in charitable initiatives in Africa, and his latest venture is an effort to curb the currency instability on the continent.
Based just outside of the Senegalese capital, Dakar, Akon’s Crypto City, a sustainable tourism village, would revolve around the Akoin. Consumers would buy goods with Akoin right from their smartphones, which in theory would stimulate financial stability and encourage micro-exchanges. When asked specifically how these apps would function, Akon admitted at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity that he’s more focused on the big picture than the details. “I come up with concepts,” he said, “and let the geeks figure [the details] out.”
According to Akon, construction on the city has already begun, with an estimated completion time of about 10 years.
A version of this article was previously published on July 3, 2018, and was updated on January 15, 2020 with more information.