Business in Africa can be highly profitable, but with profitability, there comes risk. This state is exacerbated by the fact that Africa itself, its countries and people suffer from a chronic lack of data. This is why, for over a year, the Johannesburg-based research firm In On Africa (IOA) has been at work to provide a solution to this data deficiency.
Now available is the 2017 Africa Country Benchmark Report (ACBR), the definitive resource for understanding Africa. The ACBR measures, ranks and interrogates each of the dynamic 54 countries that makes Africa such a complex and exciting continent.
Drawing on more than 19,000 data points, 34 indexes and 30 key indicators, the ACBR measures the vibrancy of Africa through ground-breaking analysis and compelling presentation. The 750-page report covers the business, economic, political and social spheres of each country and region in Africa, highlighting the opportunities and challenges that exist now and into the future.
The business sphere analysis provides some of the ACBR’s best findings and showcases how to use IOA’s collected data to make decision-making easier, faster and more profitable. The ACBR has already made some important lessons known that the business community, in and outside Africa, needs to be aware of.
One such lesson is that technological advancement sparks business growth.
Ethiopia is a perfect example because, as of 2017, their economy became East Africa’s largest. New government policies promoting aviation, space exploration and industrial parks drew investors, businesses and entrepreneurs to those targeted fields. Another clear example is that of Morocco’s push to broaden their already well-performing economy, in part, by taking advantage of their desert expanses to generate solar electricity for export to Europe. These countries confirm the trend that the overall leader in all ACBR quadrants, Mauritius, set with their expanding economic performance through promoting technological research and development.
Another lesson learnt is that businesses must look to democracies for better business performance, going forward. They must do this for a number of reasons:
- Firstly, non-democratic regimes are inherently unstable, and businesses hate disruptive revolutions.
- Secondly, autocratic governments steal business profitability by taking a share through bribery and the practice of inserting the rulers’ relatives onto company boards.
- Finally, businesses operating in non-democratic states have little choice but to co-operate, while also being hindered by unfair competition from businesses owned by the ruling elite and state.
These lessons and many more are comprehensively analysed, compared and outlined in eye-catchingly detailed infographics throughout the ACBR. Businesses, economists, scholars, journalists, policymakers, government officials, civil society and any individual or organisation interested in Africa will find the ACBR indispensable.
IOA has called upon more than a decade of experience working in and focusing on Africa, coupled with its extensive African network, to compile this trailblazing report. The ACBR advances Africa data assessment at a crucial time when quality information about Africa is needed more than ever to inform development on and for the continent.
Find out more about the ACBR at www.inonafrica.com.