The answer to Africa’s future in the digital realm will come from several startups that instead of importing foreign technologies to solve continental problems, invent tailored solutions for the region and grow into fully developed firms.
According to African Exponent, Mobile and cloud may be global technologies, but these African startups have explored their functionalities, shaped their applications and used them to build differentiated business models suited to their markets.
They have created new and uniquely African technologies that speak to their lifestyles and complexities, using the infrastructure as a base to deliver key services in ways the rest of the world would never have thought to.
No one has ever doubted that Africa has a thriving entrepreneurial spirit. Despite sub-Saharan Africa being one of the most challenging regions to launch a business, the 2017 Global Entrepreneurship Index ranks it highest in ‘Opportunity Perception’ reports.
For instance, Seventy percent of Africans live in rural areas. These are areas where electricity is very unstable, if not completely absent. People who are lucky enough to have electricity connection have to pay extremely high bills for it. This serves as great opportunities for the business minds and startups.
Challenges, such as limited internet connectivity or access to a reliable power supply, only add fuel to Africa’s innovative energy and creativity. Startups continue to develop clever solutions around these obstacles, bringing essential services to their markets. And technology is playing a vital role.