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How To Expand Into Frontier Markets: Africa

Africa is the second largest continent (after Asia), covering about one-fifth of the total land surface of the earth, with over 1.2 billion in population, and is projected to reach 1.7 billion by 2030. According to Brookings, Africa’s fast-growing population and markets present important opportunities for business in an environment of slowing global growth. At the same time, greater innovation and investment from business is essential to meet Africa’s unfulfilled demand for goods and services, close the gaps in its infrastructure and create jobs.  

According to Forbes, Africa is undergoing a drastic shift toward financial stability. Investors expect that this continent may host several emerging markets in the near future, which bodes well for doing business in Africa. The country’s increased infrastructure in communications, technology, finances, and its legal environment makes the continent more tempting for investors. Companies looking to expand internationally should consider this growing market.

Below, we’ve laid out our top four tips to help companies find success when doing business in Africa.

  • Identify top markets

To expand into frontier markets, you have to carry out in-depth research to understand and identify the top markets. According to Fraym, Urban Markets Index, the top 5 markets in Africa consist of Cairo, Johannesburg, Lagos, Luanda, and Kinshasa.

  • Find Growth Industries

According to Entrepreneur, there are a number of industries to watch for growth in Africa. These major industries are poised for growth as the African economy continues to develop.

  1. Africa’s technology advances skip the wired stage of communication, generating exciting innovation in the financial technology sector.
  2. Online retail has not caught on the way it has in the Western world, but that could change in the near future. Many countries have increased internet connections, especially through smartphones, making this a growth opportunity.
  3. Mobile solutions are driving amazing tech innovation in Africa, especially in healthcare, because there are so few doctors and so many patients. An enterprising company may be able to glean fresh ideas from Africa to take to the rest of the world.
  4. With a rapidly urbanizing population, more cities will need good public transportation options. Investors expect governments to start upgrading their transportation infrastructure to meet their needs.

You may have noticed how many of these exciting sectors reflect technological innovation through communications. Africa’s innovation in tech drives much of its growth.

  • Have a localized strategy for each country

To succeed, you need a localized strategy for each country. You would also need dedicated resources or a local support team to execute that strategy. To build a localized strategy, companies have to engage in extensive due diligence to identify untapped opportunities. Serving unmet needs within their target base.

By performing on-ground market research, companies get the required market insights. Insights are needed to get familiar with the competitive, distribution, and regulatory landscape. This allows companies to properly position their solutions in the market.

Initial and ongoing market monitoring allows companies to deliver a unique value proposition. One that they can continue to build an entire ecosystem around. Incorporating a local ecosystem would be critical in your strategy.

  • Have a reliable one-stop-shop payment solution.

Whether you are starting a new business or expanding your already-existing business in Africa, it is important that you have a one-stop-shop payment solution to make it easier than ever for your business to pay vendors, suppliers, employees, and partners at all times.

AZA Finance Helps You Expand into Africa with Confidence

With our unique international and intra-Africa payments & settlements, FX, and treasury services, we help businesses overcome one of the most significant challenges for enterprises entering or expanding in frontier markets, which is the lack of financial services that operate across multiple countries and currencies. AZA Finance is the only fintech that offers a full range of international and intra-Africa payments & settlements, FX, and treasury services to African and international enterprises. Powered by AZA Finance’s proprietary financial technology, we provide services through our API solution or Web Platform.

We have enabled 26,000 businesses to expand into frontier markets, make payments, and balance assets across 115+ markets.

To learn more about how AZA Finance can help your business expand into frontier markets, schedule a call here.


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