On February 16, 2021 Forbes published a guest article by Damien Pieretti, Vice President at HSBC.
Mr. Pieretti explains: “From Cairo to Lagos, financial exclusion persists as a socio-economic hardship and a symptom of structural inefficiencies in African economies. Now more than ever, it also reflects opportunities for technology and telecommunications firms to catalyze innovations that expand market access to previously unserviceable customer segments while generating attractive returns for investors.
In African countries like Egypt and Nigeria – two of the continent’s largest and most mature economies where financial exclusion rates remain orders of magnitude greater than in the US – hundreds of funded startups have already begun unlocking the long-term value in almost every sector, especially financial services.
Even markets as geographically and culturally disparate as those of North and sub-Saharan Africa exhibit important converging success factors, including:
- Local ecosystems boosted by a) long-term improvements in telecommunications infrastructure, and b) an expanded pool of professional computer engineering talent.
- A massive consumer base highly penetrated by mobile phones and largely excluded from formal markets.
- Maturing local regulatory frameworks coinciding with intra-continental harmonization expanding regional markets for scaling digital product offerings.
- Diversification of local entry vehicles and exit ramps including local and international IPOs as well as corporate buyouts.”
The article profiles several e-commerce and fintech start-ups in Egypt and Nigeria.
You may read the guest article on the Forbes internet site.