Africans embrace indigenous innovation as 91% ready to use local solution
Four out of five Africans are of the opinion that recent developments in African technology have changed how they perceive the continent, a recent report on the continent has indicated.
The report, which includes the surveyed opinions of 4,500 Africans from Kenya, Nigeria and Ghana, revealed that the recent wave of technology innovation coming out of Africa is changing how Africans view the continent. When asked if recent developments in African technology had impacted their perception of the continent, four out of five (84.6 per cent) answered “yes”.
It said that nine out of 10 (91.7 per cent) are likely to use technology solutions that are made in Africa and nine out of 10 (91.8 per cent) are likely to describe Africans as innovative and entrepreneurial. When asked which African technology stories they were most excited to read about, 29.8 per cent said “funding stories”, closely followed by “expansion stories” (28 per cent) and “partnership stories” (27 per cent).
According to the Africa Innovation Impact Report, which was compiled by Talking Drum Communications, a public relations and communications consultancy that works with African technology companies, and Survey54, an artificial intelligence-powered market research company, education (21.1 per cent) is considered to be the sector most impacted by technology innovation in Africa over the last two years, which is more than financial services (18.3 per cent) and entertainment (15.1 per cent).
The report noted that a new innovation narrative has emerged in Africa in recent years, embodied by the exponential growth of funding for technology startups. It pointed out that not only has investment into African startups grown 18 times between 2015 and 2021, funding for African startups grew two times faster than global rates between 2020 and 2021.
It, however, observed that beyond the stories of multimillion dollar funding rounds and acquisitions, there are also the stories of the people these innovations have been developed to help.
The Africa Innovation Impact Report highlighted job creation (51 per cent) as the biggest advantage of Africa’s growing digital economy. According to it, more than exposure of the younger population to technology (29.3 per cent), growing financial inclusion (12.4 per cent) and the potential to plug infrastructure gaps on the continent (7.1 per cent).
Commenting on the findings of the report, Founder and Managing Director of Talking Drum Communications, Olugbeminiyi Idowu, said “our aim with the report is to capture the impact of Africa’s emerging innovation narrative beyond anecdotes and hearsay, and contribute to the conversation about how we keep things moving forward.
“Based on the data we have gathered, the innovation coming out of Africa is not only changing the way people live and work, it is also changing the way people think, how they view themselves as Africans and driving a demand for more innovation. There is a growing appetite for these innovations, both from African users and global investors, and there is much to be excited about what the future holds.”
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