Unceremoniously but critically, Africa comprises most of the world’s youngest markets. Much of this, in alliance with a set-to-explode populace, lends quite the hand in Africa’s “next frontier” status.
As local ventures haste to build for the continent, international brands have not only read but also interpreted the handwriting on the wall, making inroads to the region.
But, selling to African consumers might be tough luck for all and sundry because most people still rely on minted notes.
Take eCommerce (or mCommerce) for instance. Africa-focused e-tailers like JUMIA, Copia, Konga, and even Flutterwave sell via online stores. Barring internet connectivity to access said eCommerce platforms, buying stuff with cash in hand is the practice, dominantly.
Even though Africa is the world’s official headquarters for mobile money adoption, many people in this part of the world still don’t have access to digital financial services (DFS).
In fact, more than half of the transactions happening in the motherland are offline. In a place like Ivory Coast, people with inconsistent income streams may not bother about financial services.
Well, low living standards is a commonality, especially for the African countries with small to mid-sized economies. Also, in some places, financial services are like South African tech unicorns: non-existent.
How will the cracks between offline and online transactions be papered? Who has what role to play in enabling cashlessness in African markets?