Agribusiness

Sub-Saharan Africa  has 60% of the  uncultivated arable land  in the world  and only 5%  of the cultivated land is  irrigated with modern  techniques.  While yields in all crops are at least 50% below global averages, the sector has considerable potential to lead globally in many sub-sectors.  The  region’s  agribusiness   potential  is  real  and  the  sector’s  future  growth  is  critical considering  that   in  most African countries  agribusiness  represents   30-70%  of  all   direct  and  indirect employment; however, climate change, competitiveness, and access to finance remain the sector's Achilles heel.

Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG)

Africa’s consumer landscape is  undergoing a re-adjustment.  The middle income growth  expected by many a few years ago  has yet to materialize,  driving multinationals (“MNCs”) and local  companies to right-size and re-strategize.   Both Asian  and Latin American companies faced similar growth  patterns over the  last two decades, but contrary to their African  peers, they successfully focused on the lower segments of the population,  i.e. the bulk of the population.  In fact, one can  say these companies democratize the  FMCG industry  in Asia and Latin America by catering to  the bulk of  the population with  better, safer, affordable  products.

Food Retail

Modern  retailing is  also  bound  to transform  the  agribusiness and FMCG supply chains by  pushing for standardization, scale  and cost efficiency,  all likely  to benefit consumers.   Interestingly, in  Asia and Latin America,  local  retailers,  not  MNCs,  dominate  their  markets.  Indonesia, for example, has  seen the percentage  of  food purchased through  modern channels tripled over  the last two decades,  driven by rapid  urbanization and growth in  per capital income. Rapid movement to hybrid e-commerce and physical presence will be required to succeed over the next decade.

Healthcare

Access  to   healthcare  remains   a  key  challenge   in  Africa. According  to  KPMG’s  report the  “State  of  Healthcare  in Africa,” the  region still  lags behind the  rest of  the world  in key health  indicators.  However,  there has been considerable progress over the last decade.  Primary  care is more accessible in  rural  areas,  and  better  quality  hospitals  and   clinics  are appearing  in most  major cities.   The opportunity lies in "second cities" or cities in target countries with a population of 1 million or more that have not seen a major increased in private investments despite growing demand and incomes.

New Technologies

There is growing interest in technology companies in the Region, particularly, in Kenya, which is now referred to as the “Savanah Valley”. Fintech is attracting considerable investment in new companies in payments and remittances, insurance, business solutions etc., areas which are all taking advantage of the strong US$35 billion p.a. e-wallet facilitated by Mpesa in Kenya. New technology companies in the agribusiness, logistics, education and healthcare are also popping up across the Region creating new investment opportunities and leapfrogging sectoral challenges. 

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