Africa’s potential as a growing market for businesses is underrated, as is a business’s ability to solve the continent’s largest problems.
In a slowing global economy, its rising population and markets offer economic prospects. To meet Africa’s unmet demand for goods and services, solve infrastructural gaps, generate jobs, and reduce poverty, businesses must innovate and spend more.
However, while it is important for existing businesses to innovate and spend more, it is also worth pointing out that there are a lot of untapped business opportunities in Africa that have zero to nobody investing in them.
In this article, we will discuss these untapped business opportunities in Africa and why you should consider investing in them.
1. Agribusiness in Africa
This is one of the most amazing options for untapped business opportunities in Africa.
With the shortages happening in Asia, Africa is an excellent substitute for those interested in investing in agriculture.
Agribusiness is getting attention on the continent because more people are beginning to acknowledge that many plants can be used for food, medicine, and miscellaneous purposes. The climate supports the growth of almost anything.
Some of the areas that you can focus on when it comes to an agriculture venture are:
- You can package cocoa, coffee beans, and palm oil in convenient packaging for export.
- Another option is to process the unprocessed agricultural crops into finished products that can be used by other industries, or you can give the industries the raw materials.
- You can plant and harvest agricultural products such as rice, yams, bananas, and cassava. Also, they can then be exported to international markets.
Apart from the listed options above, a great option is to start organic farming and cultivate fruits and vegetables to be transported to a local market or for export.
2. Business Process Outsourcing
In this form of business, you outsource a business process from a client and offer the opportunity to a third-party service provider.
You can offer business process outsourcing services in Africa. Although there are many businesses that do this, the opportunity still exists for investors in BPO ventures.
The BPO industry will keep growing as internet penetration increases across Africa.
3. Food Processing Business in Africa
There is an opportunity for small businesses in this niche.
For example, you can start a venture that processes cocoa beans into chocolate products such as flour, powdered milk, candy bars, etc. There is a high demand for your products with the cocoa bean crisis.
This idea is a goldmine, and with the right capital and marketing strategy, you have the chance of making a lot of money in the long term.
4. Solar Panel Development and Supply
In many parts of Africa, there is inadequate to no power supply. Many African countries still have to use kerosene, candles, and dry cell batteries as sources of light.
With the great population of the African continent, creating a solution to the power supply problem by providing off-grid solar power and supply services is a huge opportunity.
Renewable energy sources that can power homes, offices, and villages with or without connection to a national grid are in high demand in Africa.
5. Creating Electric Bicycles
Electric bicycles sound like a good idea for solving some of the transport issues in Africa.
The creation of electric bicycles is popular in the developing world and saves money that would have been spent on oil and gas. It is also an advantage when you consider the damage to our climate.
An electric bicycle is a suitable alternative to cars and buses. In addition, if these bicycles were made locally, it could be an untapped business opportunity to make money while creating solutions to problems in Africa.
6. E-Commerce Business
Ecommerce is a very lucrative business model that is making waves in Africa, and yet with a huge number of people in Africa, there is room in the market for others. As internet penetration increases, mobile phone usage will improve, and e-commerce will yield even more returns.
The demographic that young Africans occupy is always online, with frequent usage of their mobile phones or tablets. They are trendsetters and have disposable income to spend on tech gadgets, fashion, and anything stylish on the internet.
Massive opportunities are available for investors looking to put money into e-commerce. It would be advantageous to accept payments in local currencies. This would boost acceptance among African communities.
7. Blue Economy Business
The blue economy is an untapped opportunity in Africa. The term “blue economy” refers to activities carried out on the ocean that improve the economic growth, social development, and standard of living for the people living around coastal communities.
Some examples are industrial fish farming, oil exploration, the making of biofuels from algae, and the creation of pharmaceuticals using marine organisms.
8. Eco-Tourism in Africa
There are many tourist attractions in Africa, such as wildlife, safaris, nature trails, and beautiful places to visit.
There is more than enough space for investors looking to collaborate with business people in Africa to develop the tourism industry.
The tourism industry needs add-ons such as restaurants, lodging houses, and hotels. These can be built in different countries in Africa. You would be taking advantage of an already existing flow of people.
9. Business Data Storage
With the recent advancements in mobile telecommunication and information technology, there is a need for data storage.
A prepared company can meet the growing need for data storage services as so much digital content needs preservation.
Investors or business owners can offer cloud-based backup solutions to individual users or companies.
The general idea is to provide platforms, such as internet-based file-sharing platforms, for people or companies to preserve their data.
This is one of the most technical businesses on the list of untapped business opportunities in Africa.
10. Opportunities for Cybersecurity in Africa.
With the rise of the internet across Africa comes hackers and other internet dangers. This means that there is a huge opportunity in cybersecurity.
Think about the number of people who are scammed out of their resources daily. Many are blackmailed daily with stolen data from their tech devices.
There are 1.7 billion people online worldwide, and there is a need for cybersecurity services to protect identities, assets, and businesses from unauthorized access.
There is a market for cybersecurity experts who can help secure the communication networks of business moguls to help prevent cyber-attacks, loss of data, and the stealing of intellectual property.
A cybersecurity consultant job is an open opportunity if you have the skillset to detect vulnerabilities in computer systems.
11. The Fintech Industry in Africa
The financial industry in Africa has been having a conversation that pertains to payment solutions on the continent. The financial technology industry is a market that is largely unpopulated and one that will welcome other players.
The lack of efficient payment platforms to help process payments is a hindrance to doing business inside Africa and across international markets.
With high phone penetration and the massive spread of mobile devices to many people across Africa, there is an enormous growth opportunity for the fintech industry on the continent.
Financial technology, short for fintech, is simply the use of technological tools to provide financial services across Africa.
Some of these services are money transfers, money lending, and deposits. The technologies that make this possible include biometrics, machine learning, artificial intelligence, cryptography for cryptocurrencies, mobile payments, blockchains, crowdsourcing, etc.
12. Opportunities in Edutech
The population of educated people in Africa is much smaller than the uneducated. Africa is the continent with the highest illiteracy levels in the world.
More than 65 percent of adults in Sub-Saharan Africa cannot read or write. This outlines the opportunities in the education sector if the right business model is developed.
Young Africans need an education. If shown a way to benefit from technology as a tool for development, they will embrace it.
The Edutech industry is about creating digital content for teaching students to learn on the internet.
One of the best business models for developing mobile applications is where children learn via interaction with games, quizzes, and educational videos that teach them digital literacy and the skills that would change their lives.
13. Urban Logistics Solutions
Many opportunities exist for investors both within and outside of Africa for urban logistic solutions.
As African cities expand, businesses will need cutting-edge technology and solutions. These new technologies will help maximize the growing volume of goods they receive and help improve distribution.
There is an opportunity for business people with experience to build marketplaces to help them trade their interests in the online space.
14. Low-cost Healthcare
When you consider infant and maternal mortality rates, it becomes clear that Africa faces a massive healthcare challenge.
Challenges also represent opportunity, and entrepreneurs who are able to provide excellent medical care at a low cost will make a lot of money in the healthcare space.
You can do any of the following and more, mobile clinics, medical attention using mobile applications, health insurance, online pharmacies, etc.
New ideas are welcome as long as they solve problems in the healthcare space in Africa.
15. Affordable Housing Opportunities
Housing shortages have always existed in Africa and a solution that would help would make a huge difference.
Entrepreneurs and investors willing to invest in Africa will have the government’s full cooperation, as its priority is to deliver affordable accommodation to its citizens.
You can offer consulting services and support to investors who want to bolster the real estate industry. Provide low-cost designs and housing that can be constructed from local materials and is affordable for the citizens.
So if you are an investor and you are on the lookout for untapped business opportunities in Africa, this article has opportunities you can invest in. You can take advantage of one of them and create wealth for yourself and your family.