Africa Business Ideas Continent Guides

The 10 Best Industries in Africa for Investors in 2021

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  • Rapid social and economic growth in Africa represents great opportunities for investors
  • It’s thought that online shopping in Africa will be worth $75 billion by 2025
  • Africa’s population is becoming richer, more mobile and more educated. People, especially in cities, have more money to spend. Many are spending their gains on education and modern medicines
  • In 2018, tourism accounted for 8.5% of Africa’s GDP, with the industry bringing in $194.2 billion to the continent. It’s believed that this figure will rise to $262 billion by 2030

Africa is growing rapidly, with six of the world’s ten fastest-growing economies being on this continent. Rapid growth always represents great opportunities for investors. Here are the ten industries that have the most to offer.

1. Agriculture

The agricultural industry is a job-creating machine, employing roughly 60% of working people in the sub-Saharan area. Food production is potentially even larger. The expansion of agriculture has brought its share of environmental issues. Developing solutions to these problems may create even more innovation, job growth, and business opportunities in Africa.

2. Consumer services

Africa is catching up with consumer spending and growth and is one of the last regions to embrace it. People are earning more so are looking for more to spend their money on. This drives infrastructure and small-to-medium businesses, as well as encouraging consumers to make online and mobile purchases. It’s thought that online shopping in Africa will be worth $75 billion by 2025. This is a huge market for investors and entrepreneurs with good business ideas to capitalise on and make money.

3. Manufacturing

This sector is growing in line with the appetite for consumer goods and reducing economic and social instability. As Africa prospers, its manufacturing base will grow and strengthen, making the continent much more resistant to recession and less reliant on exporting its natural resources. Africa’s manufacturing sector will also start up under more sustainable practices and technologies than developed countries.

4. Financial services

Higher salaries and more people in stable work leads to more demand for banking services. At present. Africa’s banking market is the world’s second-fastest growing. Its competitive environment drives more innovation and use of technology which makes it attractive for investors.

5. IT and Telecoms

In the decade between 2007 and 2016, mobile phone usage grew by almost three and a half times. This rapid adoption of mobile comms has led to big sociol and economic changes, with many people in more remote regions using their phones for banking and financial services. As more people move from pay-as-you-go to monthly subscriptions, they’re using more data. This leads to mobile phones being used for business, healthcare, education, and keeping in touch.

6. Healthcare and education

Africa’s population is becoming richer, more mobile and more educated, which means that people, especially in cities, have more money to spend. Many are spending their gains on education and modern medicines. African governments are upping their health spending to hit the UN’s Millennium Development Goals.

People are embracing new medicines and technologies so that good healthcare isn’t just for the wealthy anymore. Anyone interested in innovations within educational and healthcare content and technology would be making a wise investment.

7. Renewables

Africa has huge potential for renewable energy tech. It has a huge coastline for hydro and wind power and more solar power potential than anywhere else on earth. For decades Africa has struggled with unstable and unreliable – or in some places non-existent – power supplies. So, bringing electricity to under-served areas can transform the prospects of the people there. It is leading to lot of new solar, electric, hydro, and wind startups.

8. Infrastructure

As Africa’s population looks for more banking services, more cars, more phones, and more education, there has to be the infrastructure to provide these services and goods. The infrastructure industry will grow at pace with the other industries as they rely on one another to move the continent forward.

9. Tourism

In 2018, tourism accounted for 8.5% of Africa’s GDP, with the industry bringing in $194.2 billion to the continent. It’s believed that this figure will rise to $262 billion by 2030, with tourism employing around 30 million Africans. The increase in political, economic and resource stability will drive this industry forward.

10. Mining

Global investment in mining will carry on growing, especially in relatively new regions for the industry like Congo. Far from being a thing of the past, the mining industry may modernise and streamline over the next few decades as companies look for sustainable and ethical solutions.

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