Issue Two: Middle East and Africa
Country case studies: South Africa, Kenya
Company case studies: Souqalmal
Africa is the last frontier of fintech startups, which is suddenly showing signs of awakening. Until now, barring the exception of M-Pesa, it is the banks that were expected to come up with innovations in financial services. With several global funds now going in with their war chests, the startup landscape is now ignited. The startup landscape in Africa is developing rapidly. Advancements in digital technology, faster internet connections, the proliferation of mobile phones, a large talent pool, a young, aspirational population and an improving environment for innovation are some of the factors that are driving this rise. Cities like Nairobi, Lagos, Cape Town, Johannesburg, Accra and Cairo are emerging as major startup hubs. The gaps that exist regarding healthcare, housing, transport, electricity, water, sanitation and other basic services provide a huge opportunity for African startups to make an impact.