Africa rising


Above the Noise

Distilling insights and key lessons from new concepts and current events. In this post, one of our founding partners, Arshad Abba, highlights why African continues to be full of growth opportunities


Africa as a region is forecasted to be the world’s slowest growing in 2021. This is due to the struggle to vaccinate its population and continued slowed growth from its two largest economies, South Africa and Nigeria. The growth story across Africa will vary significantly with higher growth anticipated in the East and North Africa.


Figure 1 - GDP Growth

Despite this set back Africa will continue to rise having shown significant developments in human development, growth in its addressable population and continued resilience throughout the challenges it faces. These long run trends will continue and be a source of dividends for those who can succeed in these markets.

Figure 2

Opportunities in Africa

A youthful population, a growing middle class and fast urbanizing markets are Africa’s largest assets that will provide significant opportunities as these markets formalize.

Figure 3

18 months after Covid-19’s first infection, Africa has remained resilient. This has strengthened our view that Africa will continue to develop and pose future long-term opportunities for investors. For more than 20 years my partners and I have been strong advocates for Africa and we continue to assist clients develop their strategies across the continent leveraging the limited data available to develop in-depth strategies with great success.

With its many challenges come opportunities for companies that want to invest across the African continent for the longer term. The following are key considerations from our experience in succeeding in Africa:

  • Affordability and accessibility are the two leading challenges in Africa and most emerging markets. Understanding its impact and how to overcome these challenges is important to success
  • Transitioning from primary products to value added exports is necessary for Africa’s success – progress has been made here and more is required to fast track Africa’s industrialization – this journey is gaining momentum and exploring its possibilities may yield strong long run returns
  • Africa remains highly diversified and opportunities exist across the continent – developing an Africa wide strategy that recognizes this diversity and unlocking the potential in a structured way is fundamental to become an Africa wide success – one size fits all will not work
  • Technology is the catalyst for change and Africa as a continent will be the largest beneficiary of the technological developments over the next decade – Technology has and will continue to support Africa bypass traditional models – Investing in these sectors and understanding its impact can created a competitive advantage as the continent formalizes
  • Technology will reshape the Africa landscape – Supported by infrastructure development this will create unlimited benefits for those that invest early and stay the distance