Happy as an investor in Africa

Boubacar Diallo

Havas Horizon and the Institut Choiseul publish their fourth barometer on the perception of the African economy. According to this study of some fifty institutions and large groups, companies are convinced that Africa has become a land of innovation.

The enthusiasm of investors and major global groups for Africa is not fading. This is apparent from the study conducted by Havas Horizon and the Institut Choiseul. Fifty banks, investors and groups such as Microsoft, Sanofi or CFAO interviewed said they were optimistic about their future prospects in Africa. “Ninety-two percent of our respondents say they are optimistic and above all 80% want to strengthen their positions in the coming years,” says Jean-Philippe Dorent, CEO of Havas Horizon.

The most attractive countries are Ivory Coast, Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana and South Africa. But some regions are less popular. “Central Africa is still a little out of order and we have rather disinvestment forecasts, at least in the short term,” says Jean-Philippe Dorent. Nigeria, highly dependent on oil, arouses more distrust than Kenya whose economy is much more diversified.

Overall, economic dynamism is driven by global growth as well as domestic demand. The emergence of a middle class and the demographic boom strengthen economies. Curiously, it is not the oil sector nor that of the raw materials which are the most dynamic in the eyes of the investors, according to Jean-Philippe Dorent: “If we look at the sectors which the investors say to be the most promising, we have First, financial services, then we have mass distribution and finally energy. ”

The study also highlights the development of an African innovation model. Digital products and services are developing faster than elsewhere in order to compensate for the lack of infrastructure, for example in banking or telephony. African innovation has become an attractive component for foreign companies that can rely on seedlings of young shoots from Kenya, Côte d’Ivoire or Rwanda and Morocco.

Only black spot, corruption. While everyone welcomes an improving business climate, corruption and bad governance remain plagues to fight and obstacles to development.


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