1) African food brands for export

Photo credit: FairAfric

Every year, Africa loses thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in potential income by exporting unprocessed, non-value-added commodities like raw cocoa and coffee beans.
And then when these commodities have been transformed into premium chocolate and gourmet coffee by factories in North America and Europe, we spend even more money to import the value-added products back to Africa.

As a result, while chocolate and processed coffee represent a lucrative global market that is worth over $100 billion annually, thousands of African cocoa and coffee farmers remain trapped in extreme poverty.

2) Off-grid solar

Photo credit: Everspring.net

While policymakers in Europe and North America debate about the most fitting energy transition strategy for their countries, Africa presents a clean and open slate for renewable energy, especially solar.
The race to spread solar power across Africa is now a multi-billion-dollar industry that continues to attract entrepreneurs and investors from within and outside the continent.
What makes solar one of the most attractive business opportunities in Africa right now is the significant potential for off-grid solar solutions.

Over 600 million Africans are tired of waiting for energy from centrally-managed power grids that are slow to deploy, inefficient, and inflexible to the continent’s growing power needs.

3) Apartment hotels

luxury apartment agoda
Photo Credit: Agoda

The rise in global business travel, a massive market that spends more than $1.2 trillion annually, is the big trend responsible for the growing demand for apartment hotels in Africa.

Apartment hotels, also known as ‘serviced’ apartments or ‘long-stay’ hotels, are an emerging real estate niche that brings together the best of both a hotel and an apartment.

The appeal of this offering is that residents get the privacy of a furnished and fitted apartment with the convenience of hotel services. On top of that, apartment hotels can cost up to 20-30% less than an equivalent extended stay at a conventional hotel.

In 2015, there were only 8,802 serviced apartments in 102 locations in Africa. By 2017, the numbers had increased to 9,477 serviced apartments in 166 locations, a rise of 7.6% and 62.7% respectively. This shows the rising level of interest in the sector, according to the Global Serviced Apartments Industry Report.

4) Digital financial services

ibonus prepaid
Photo Credit: iBonus.net

Over 60% of Africa’s adult population is unbanked. Up to 350 million of them own and use phones, but fewer own a bank account or have access to formal financial services. That’s a huge market indeed.

By using mobile phones and the internet, fintech entrepreneurs across the continent are deepening financial inclusion and unlocking incredible market opportunities in financial services. And the opportunities range from processing payments and money transfers to savings, and access to credit.
Current estimates project that over the next 3 years, Africa’s fintech industry will grow by at least $40 billion and contribute up to $150 billion to Africa’s GDP by 2020. It’s this huge market potential that’s making investors fall over themselves to invest in African fintech companies.

5) Automatic Fare Collection Operator for Buses

Photo Credit: Autofare.net

Shortage of cash notes, fraud, and fake money have been a problem for bus companies in under developing countries. However, nobody wants to invest or to finance any fare collection system for old buses.

By following a proven financial model based on charging a minimum deposit on each passenger stored-value card, it will be a big money making business with minimum or no investment.

Operating as an Automatic fare collection operator independent from the bus company, you can have a positive cashflow of investment over USD 1 million, and earn about USD 1 million every year for a population of a million passengers.

To learn more: autofare.net

Post Author: Keith Lau

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