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Africa’s digital opportunity in nurturing rise of super apps

Africa , 07 Dec 2020

Africa could serve as an incubator for super apps following the success of these apps in markets like South East Asia, Latin America and Europe, according to a report by research firm Briter Bridges.

According to the report, super apps allow users to access several services (such as transport, delivery, payment and lending) via a centralised digital platform.

“Taking funding as a benchmarking indicator, African markets remain the most untapped when it comes to multi-service applications, especially if compared with Asia or Latin America, where super apps have been raising investment in the order of billions of dollars,” the report indicated.

“Yet, the steep growth across the logistics, e-commerce and the broad, on-demand ecosystem across Africa, in addition to the direct involvement of players such as GoJek, Amazon, and Facebook, suggests that, in the near future, the continent could soon see new organisations - such as Metro Africa Express (MAX) or KeyOps adapt their suite to new verticals and more sizeable funding,” it added.

According to Briter Bridges populous cities such as Jarkata, Dehli, Sao Paulo and Mexico City have experienced success with these applications.

The research company added that cities like Lagos could see super apps or multi-service applications flourish.

The report highlighted the successes of Africa’s super apps including SafeBoda, Gozem, and Halan, that were able to break out of their core offering and bundle other services.

“Spearheaded by Jumia’s rocky journey, the African continent is currently witnessing the rise of its first generation of super apps, as players such as SafeBoda (founded in Uganda, expanded to Kenya and Nigeria) and Halan (first launched in Egypt and expanded to Sudan and Ethiopia) have been attracting international investors’ attention and achieve meaningful growth,” Briter Bridges stated.

Experts believe the growth of such super apps in Africa will not only expand digital services but also attract heavy investments and grow the continent’s enterprises.

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