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Market entry project

SOTM November. Market entry project for a US communication company

africon was contracted to carry out a market assessment and recommend a suitable Africa strategy for a major international player in the two-way radio communication industry. The project had 7 countries of focus where a total of 184 interviews were conducted with the relevant players in the industry. The results concluded from the analysis of all interviews and market data was clear; South Africa dwarfs its counterparts in terms of market size and market maturity. Nigeria, Kenya and Angola on the other hand offer the greatest potential going into the future. Quality was found to be the key determining criteria for consumers when purchasing two-way radios. This is mainly due to fact that main users of two way radios tend to be in critical sectors where quality cannot be compromised including law enforcement, private security, mining, oil and gas. Customers in this sectors are willing to pay a premium for the guarantee of a reliable products. Africon can provide value to other radio communications companies by evaluating the market potential for their product, analyze the value chain and identify suitable distribution partners in the key market in sub Saharan Africa

africon publishes African steel insights on the ITA Journal.

Last October and in the International Tube Association 3rd journal edition, africon published an article about the Steel industry in East Africa. The article started by portraying the image of Africa that is perceived by the rest of the world. Many countries in the continent have started to change their image from a crisis centre to a potential emerging market. The macro economic factors strongly indicate positive changes that will lead the continent to be the next emerging market. The growing young population together with economic growth on the continent lead to a growing labour force and cities which lead to a significant increase in middle class. Furthermore, the continent is pushing towards manufacturing and automation as this sector remains as the continent weakest link. Also, constant rise in foreign direct investment over the past decades is further boosting the economy not only in financial terms but as well in terms of knowledge, expertise and technology.  Industries of almost all kind will experience a rapid growth due to this economic boom, however the African market is still very diverse as the continent host 54 countries.

East Africa currently distinguish itself by economical growth and political stability in the region and the least dependent on commodities such as gold or oil. The region was projected to capture the highest regional economic growth over the past year in Africa. The article went in depth to analyse those macro-economic factors and focused on the drivers of steel industry that promote economic growth in Africa and especially in East Africa

Overall, Africa does host enormous opportunities for firms from around the world. With its diversity and complicity however comes the need to evaluate closely where they are and how to make use of the it.

To access the full article, please use the link below:
The East African Steel Industry

africon CEO Mr. Marc Zander – Interview ” Investors lack info”

CT Executive Search Specializes in senior recruitment in the emerging markets, leveraging its proprietary research capacities in Moscow at a network of partners in Asia, Africa and Eurasian Economic Union. CT Executive interviewed africon GmbH CEO and Partner Mr. Zander last October to share insights about investors information and relations in Africa.

The interview started by covering African countries with most financial demand and highest potential. Mr Zander outlined the most important factors that drive Foreign Direct Investment FDIs, and  emphasised on the African regions that promote those factors. The interview then covered how to best enter the African market. Mr Zander recommended a detailed study of the market in order to enter with best fit African Market Entry strategy.

For the full interview please use the link below to gain more insights about investors lack of information in Africa: Interview https://www.ct-executive.de/download-file?file_id=472&file_code=de37e6d523

Automotive projects conducted by africon

Over the past years, more and more automotive firms have shown increasing interest in Sub-Sahara Africa. Even though OEMs like VW and Nissan have dominated the news with their announcement of establishing assembly plants in Africa, the largest immediate automotive business potential lies elsewhere: in the automotive aftermarket.

With more than 12,7 million vehicles on the road in Nigeria, more than 6 million in Egypt and almost 2 million in Kenya, more and more automotive parts are sold in Africa. The main challenge especially for global aftermarket leaders from Europe and Japan: the sector requires large amount of data to efficiently and effectively increase sales. With data availability in Africa being a major challenge, africon has successfully plugged this gap and supported aftermarket firms from around the world and in different product segments on their Africa strategy.  Amongst other points, we supported firms with market sizes, details on vehicles in operation, suitable import partners and even research on specific part numbers. For the upcoming years, africon has set an increased focus on the sector and expects more companies to follow current early movers to the continent.

africon interviews 184 IT partners for the communication sector

africon was contracted to carry out a suitable go-to market Africa strategy for a major international player in the two-way radio communication industry (LMR). The project covered 7 countries where a total of 184 interviews were conducted with relevant players in the industry. The results concluded from the analysis of all interviews and market data was clear; South Africa dwarfs its counterparts in terms of market size with at market of more than 30 mio Euro. Nigeria, Kenya and Angola on the other hand offer the greatest growth potential going forward. Quality was found to be the key determining criteria for consumers when purchasing two-way radios. This was due to fact that the main users of two-way radios use them in critical situations where quality cannot be compromised including law enforcement, private security, mining, oil and gas. Customers in these sectors are willing to pay a premium for the guarantee of a reliable products. These still hold a market share of more than 80% compared to cheap products from China. Another finding has been that local system partners are key to success where africon identified more than 30 locally in key markets

Mr. Zander moderates “High-Level forum Africa“ in Vienna

The largest Africa event in Austria was hosted on the 19th of December 2018 bringing together more than 1.000 people from Africa, Austria and Europe. The aim of the forum was to elaborate on the potential economic relations between Africa, Europe and Austria.
A side event themed “Disruptive Collaboration” – Africa and Euro in the digital age” was organised by Ecotec from Austria who invited Marc-Peter Zander, CEO and Partner of africon to moderate a part of the side event.

The result of the fruitful discussion has been that Africa drives its digitalisation strongly resulting in great chances for African and European companies.

africon active in training and education in the African context

Beside the longstanding partnership with the Hochschule Bonn Rhein Sieg, the engagement in the TVET initiative in Kenya and the permanent supervision of student’s thesis, africon continues its engagement in the field of training and education also in the city of its new headquarter Bremen.

In November 2018, Sonja Mattfeld was invited to speak in front of a class of international students at the Hochschule Bremen in the study program of Global Management. In her presentation she raised not only the awareness for the huge business potential in Africa and motivated the students to look for careers in that growing market, but also shared insights of research projects and taught some research and analysis techniques. The lecture was part of their business administration curriculum and will in close cooperation with the professor directly enable the students to apply their knowledge in their exams. 

africon is always happy to assist international students and universities, give lectures and support with mentoring of projects related to Africa. For any questions on this please do not hesitate to contact our HR development manager Lena Schwoerer