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Top 20 Fastest Growing Companies in Africa (2024)

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Top 20 Fastest Growing Companies in Africa (2024)

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The Financial Times has released its list of the top 20 fastest growing companies in Africa for 2024.
 

These companies have shown remarkable growth, driven primarily by organic means, and have made significant contributions to their respective industries.

Here’s a closer look at each company and what they do.

  1. Omniretail Inc. (Nigeria, E-commerce)

    • About: A leading online retail company in Nigeria, Omniretail Inc. provides a wide range of products, including electronics, fashion, and household items, through its robust e-commerce platform.
  2. Kyosk Digital (Mauritius, E-commerce)

    • About: Kyosk Digital specializes in providing digital solutions for retail logistics and supply chain management, helping small retailers streamline their operations and improve efficiency.
  3. Resourgenix Pty Ltd. (South Africa, Employment Services)

    • About: Resourgenix is a prominent employment services provider in South Africa, offering staffing solutions and workforce management services to various industries.
  4. Moniepoint Inc. (Nigeria, Fintech)

    • About: Moniepoint is a fintech company that offers mobile banking and payment solutions, aiming to provide financial inclusion for the unbanked population in Nigeria.
  5. Afex Commodities Exchange Ltd. (Nigeria, Fintech)

    • About: Afex operates Nigeria’s first private commodities exchange, facilitating trade and investment in agricultural products to improve market efficiency and farmer incomes.
  6. Chari.Co (Morocco, E-commerce)

    • About: Chari.Co is an e-commerce platform that supports small and medium-sized retailers in Morocco by providing access to a wide range of products at competitive prices.
  7. Enara Group (Egypt, Energy & Utilities)

    • About: Enara Group is an energy solutions provider in Egypt, focusing on renewable energy projects and utilities management to support the country’s sustainable development goals.
  8. Yellow Digital Retailers Ltd. (Mauritius, Energy & Utilities)

    • About: Yellow Digital Retailers offers affordable solar energy solutions to households and businesses in Mauritius, promoting the use of clean energy across the island.
  9. Kentegra Biotechnology Epz Ltd. (Kenya, Health Care)

    • About: Kentegra Biotechnology is a Kenyan biotech firm that develops and manufactures health care products, including pharmaceuticals and medical devices, to improve health outcomes.
  10. HearX Group Pty Ltd. (South Africa, Health Care)

    • About: HearX Group provides innovative hearing health solutions through digital platforms, offering services like hearing tests and affordable hearing aids.
  11. AfricaWorks (Mauritius, Real Estate)

    • About: AfricaWorks is a real estate company that offers flexible workspace solutions across Africa, catering to the needs of startups, freelancers, and established businesses.
  12. Mycredit Investments Ltd. (Nigeria, Fintech)

    • About: Mycredit Investments provides microloans and credit facilities to individuals and small businesses in Nigeria, helping them achieve financial stability and growth.
  13. Agro Supply Ltd. (Uganda, Agriculture)

    • About: Agro Supply is an agricultural company in Uganda that supports smallholder farmers by providing access to quality inputs, financing, and market linkages.
  14. Lapaire Glasses (Ivory Coast, Health Care)

    • About: Lapaire Glasses is a health care company that manufactures and distributes affordable prescription glasses, improving vision care accessibility in Ivory Coast.
  15. Deimos Cloud Pty Ltd. (South Africa, IT & Software)

    • About: Deimos Cloud offers cloud computing and IT services to businesses in South Africa, helping them leverage technology for improved efficiency and scalability.
  16. Alpha Morgan Capital Managers Ltd. (Nigeria, Fintech)

    • About: Alpha Morgan Capital is an investment firm in Nigeria that provides asset management, investment advisory, and financial planning services.
  17. Balancell Energy Pty Ltd. (South Africa, Manufacturing)

    • About: Balancell Energy specializes in the development and manufacturing of advanced energy storage solutions, including batteries and power management systems.
  18. Thrive Agric Ltd. (Nigeria, Agriculture)

    • About: Thrive Agric is an agricultural technology company in Nigeria that connects farmers with investors to provide the necessary capital and resources for increased productivity.
  19. Bisedge Ltd. (Nigeria, Logistics & Transportation)

    • About: Bisedge is a logistics and transportation company in Nigeria that offers supply chain management services, focusing on efficiency and reliability.
  20. Evolution Foods International Pty Ltd. (South Africa, Food & Beverages)

    • About: Evolution Foods is a food and beverage company in South Africa that produces a range of healthy and innovative food products for the local and international markets. 

 

Methodology

According to the Financial Times, the ranking was based on a combination of factors including:

      • Public data research by Statista to identify potential candidates.
      • Company applications with revenue figures verified by senior leadership.
      • Minimum revenue thresholds for 2019 and 2022 to ensure financial viability.
      • Focus on companies with organic (internal) revenue growth.
      • Verification and data cleaning by Statista to ensure accuracy.

Here is the full report – https://www.ft.com/content/a1bc5d2e-046e-499b-b27e-4d057f9d8477?ref=

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MTN Rwanda Launches Biodegradable SIM Cards in Environmental Push

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MTN Rwanda Launches Biodegradable SIM Cards in Environmental Push

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MTN Rwanda is taking a groundbreaking step towards environmental responsibility with the launch of the nation’s first-ever paper-based, biodegradable SIM cards, dubbed “bioSIMs.”
 
This initiative marks a significant addition to the company’s sustainability efforts, aligning with Rwanda’s Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy and the broader environmental goals of the MTN Group.

The telecom industry faces growing pressure to address its environmental impact.
 
With an estimated 4.5 billion plastic SIM cards produced in 2020 alone and a staggering 430 million tons of plastic waste generated annually, the need for eco-friendly alternatives is undeniable.
 
Biodegradable SIM cards are a recent innovation, and MTN Rwanda is among the frontrunners in embracing this technology.

These bioSIMs offer a solution by naturally decomposing over time, minimizing their environmental footprint.
 
They are crafted from 100% Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified paper, guaranteeing responsible sourcing of raw materials.
 
MTN Rwanda’s commitment extends beyond the SIM card itself, with the company optimizing packaging to further reduce its ecological impact.

Mapula Bodibe, CEO of MTN Rwanda, hailed the launch as a milestone in the company’s 25-year journey. “We aim to set a precedent for responsible business practices,” Bodibe said, “encouraging other industries to join us in building a greener future for Rwanda and beyond.”

The bioSIM launch is part of MTN Rwanda’s wider sustainability strategy, “Project Zero.”
 
The initiative includes transitioning a significant portion of their fleet to hybrid vehicles and installing solar panels at data centers.
 
These efforts contribute to the ambitious goal of the MTN Group – achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2040.

While no timeframe for widespread bioSIM availability has been announced, the launch signifies a promising step in MTN Rwanda’s environmental leadership, setting a positive example for businesses across the region.

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South Africa Launches First Military-Focused AI Hub in Africa

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South Africa Launches First Military-Focused AI Hub in Africa

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South Africa took a significant step towards integrating Artificial Intelligence (AI) into its national defense and security with the launch of the Defence Artificial Intelligence Research Unit (DAIRU).
 

The initiative, spearheaded by the Ministry of Communications and Digital Technologies in collaboration with the Department of Defence, establishes DAIRU as the fourth hub under the Artificial Intelligence Institute of South Africa (AIISA).

This development positions South Africa at the forefront of AI research for military applications, aligning with the global trend of utilizing AI in defense operations.

The launch coincides with the National AI Summit held on May 5, 2024, where the importance of regulations for responsible AI development was emphasized.

The draft National AI Plan, shared during the summit, will undergo a pre-policy process to gather public and industry feedback before submission for official approval.

Lieutenant General Michael Ramantswana, Chief of Staff of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF), hailed the DAIRU launch as a crucial milestone.

He stressed the importance of not only adopting existing AI technologies but also fostering innovation within the SANDF. Collaboration and resource sharing were highlighted as key factors in accelerating AI implementation.

DAIRU is expected to address critical needs in areas like AI capacity development, cyber defense, maritime and border security, countering illicit activities, and enhancing operational efficiency for the SANDF.

The initiative aligns with the Presidential Commission on the Fourth Industrial Revolution’s (PC4IR) recommendations, recognizing AI as a transformative force for both societal and economic progress.

This development in South Africa’s AI landscape paves the way for utilizing this powerful technology to strengthen national security and contribute to broader socioeconomic advancement.

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African Biotech Startup Syndicate Bio and SOPHiA GENETICS Partner to Improve Access to Cancer Diagnostics in Africa

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African Biotech Startup Syndicate Bio and SOPHiA GENETICS Partner to Improve Access to Cancer Diagnostics in Africa

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Nigerian biotech company Syndicate Bio has partnered with SOPHiA GENETICS, a leader in cloud-based healthcare software to improve access to advanced cancer diagnostics in Africa,
 

This collaboration aims to address the critical need for wider availability of comprehensive genomic profiling and liquid biopsy testing across the continent.

The World Health Organization (WHO) reported in February 2023 that Africa faces a significant cancer burden, with an estimated 1.1 million new cases diagnosed annually and roughly 700,000 deaths.

Data suggests this number could rise to nearly one million deaths per year by 2030 without decisive interventions.

Through this partnership, Syndicate Bio will offer cutting-edge liquid biopsy testing, a minimally invasive approach that can benefit patients who currently lack access to traditional diagnostic methods or have to travel outside Africa for testing.

“Our collaboration with SOPHiA GENETICS is focused on enabling the widespread use of precision medicine in oncology across Africa,” said Abasi Ene-Obong, Founder of Syndicate Bio.

“We believe this will significantly improve patient outcomes on the continent.”

Ene-Obong elaborated on the potential of the partnership, stating, “By combining Syndicate Bio’s scientific expertise with SOPHiA GENETICS’ AI-powered technologies and data-driven solutions, we have a unique opportunity to revolutionize cancer care in Africa. This includes non-invasive cancer analysis, predictive genetic testing, and the implementation of effective precision medicine strategies.”

SOPHiA GENETICS recognizes the far-reaching impact of this partnership. The company’s Chief Medical Officer acknowledges that Syndicate Bio’s implementation will not only benefit Africa but also contribute to a comprehensive dataset that will provide valuable insights for shaping the future of global healthcare.

Syndicate Bio, launched in September 2023 by former leaders of African genomics startup 54gene, is dedicated to driving advancements in genomics and precision medicine initiatives, with a primary focus on Africa.

In October 2023, the company signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Nigeria’s National Institute of Medical Research (NIMR) to establish a foundation for transformative genomic studies.

This collaboration aims to gain a deeper understanding of diseases prevalent in Nigeria and identify potential targets for drug discovery. NIMR will play a crucial role in ensuring ethical oversight throughout the research process.

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CatalyzU and Future Africa Launch “How to Startup” Fellowship to Empower African Entrepreneurs

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CatalyzU and Future Africa Launch "How to Startup" Fellowship to Empower African Entrepreneurs

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CatalyzU, a tech-driven platform that supports African talent, has partnered with Future Africa, a pan-African venture capital firm, to launch the “How to Startup” Fellowship.
 

This seven-week online program equips aspiring and existing entrepreneurs with the skills and knowledge needed to build successful businesses in Africa.

The program kicks off on May 23, 2024, and applications close on May 14. It targets startup founders, aspiring entrepreneurs, startup employees, and corporate innovators seeking to launch ventures within Africa.

Developed by experienced African founders and venture capitalists, the fellowship promises an immersive learning experience beyond traditional entrepreneurship education.

Participants will receive hands-on training, live learning sessions, and gain insights from real-world case studies, all designed to address the unique challenges and opportunities of the African startup landscape.

The curriculum covers essential aspects of building a startup, including idea validation, minimum viable product creation, navigating legal and financial hurdles, and fundraising strategies.

The program boasts renowned instructors like Iyinoluwa E. Aboyeji, Co-founder of Andela, Flutterwave, and Future Africa, and Mia Koschitzky-Kimani, Managing Partner at Future Africa and Co-founder of DukaConnect.

Upon completion, graduates join the Young African Catalyst network, a community of over 200 African founders and VCs, offering ongoing support and potential partnerships.

“We’re thrilled to empower the next generation of African startups,” said Karl Nchite, Co-founder and CEO of CatalyzU. “Africa’s entrepreneurial scene is vibrant and rapidly growing.

By providing practical experiences and access to industry leaders, we equip entrepreneurs to turn innovative ideas into thriving businesses.”

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis until spots are filled. This initiative follows CatalyzU’s rebranding in July 2023 and its acceptance into Techstars Toronto alongside other startups from Canada and emerging markets.

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Google Seeks African Startups Pioneering AI Solutions for 8th Accelerator Program

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Google Seeks African Startups Pioneering AI Solutions for 8th Accelerator Program

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Google is calling on African tech ventures to apply for the eighth cohort of its Google for Startups Accelerator Africa program.

This year’s program prioritizes startups leveraging Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) to tackle challenges and unlock opportunities across the continent.

The Google for Startups Accelerator Africa is a virtual program spanning three months.

It equips African startups with mentorship, technical resources, and access to a global network of experts and investors.

Since its launch in 2018, the program has empowered 106 startups from 17 African countries, collectively raising over $263 million and creating more than 2,800 jobs.

“We’re excited to support the next generation of African AI pioneers,” said Folarin Aiyegbusi, Head of Startups Ecosystem, Africa at Google.

“Through the Google for Startups Accelerator, we’ll provide them with the resources and mentorship needed to build impactful businesses that thrive.”

Aiyegbusi emphasized Africa’s booming tech scene and AI’s potential to transform various sectors.

Running from June to September 2024, the Class 8 program offers benefits including:

  • Up to $350,000 in Google Cloud credits
  • Personalized guidance from Google AI experts, seasoned entrepreneurs, and industry leaders
  • In-depth training on AI/ML development, product strategy, and scaling
  • Connections to potential investors, partners, and customers
  • Supportive network of fellow founders facing similar challenges and opportunities

Applications are open until May 20, 2024, and can be submitted online at https://startup.google.com/programs/accelerator/africa/.

Eligible startups should be based in Africa or develop Africa-centric solutions, with a transformative approach to AI/ML.

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Mauritius Telecom Plans New Subsea Cable to Boost Africa-Asia Connectivity

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Mauritius Telecom Plans New Subsea Cable to Boost Africa-Asia Connectivity

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Mauritius Telecom, the leading telecommunications provider in Mauritius, is spearheading the development of a new subsea cable project, dubbed T4.
 

This critical infrastructure will enhance internet connectivity between Africa, the Indian Ocean islands, and Asia.

Discussions are underway with potential partners, including Indian telecom giant Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. and French multinational Orange SA (Groupe Orange).

T4 is designed to replace the existing South Africa Far East (SAFE) cable upon its expiry in 2027.

The new cable boasts a significant upgrade, offering a staggering 1,000 times the capacity of its predecessor, according to Mauritius Telecom CEO Kapil Reesaul.

“Recent cable disruptions highlight the need for a more robust connection to the Far East,” Reesaul explained. “T4 will directly link Mauritius to India and Singapore, ensuring greater redundancy and improved internet stability.”

The project is motivated by a series of recent outages, with Mauritius experiencing a technical glitch on April 26th, adding to disruptions caused by damaged undersea cables near Ivory Coast (March 2024) and Yemen (since February 2024).

The new cable is expected to follow a similar route as the SAFE cable, stretching approximately 13,500 kilometers from South Africa to Singapore, with stops in Madagascar, La Reunion, and Mauritius.

This initiative builds upon Mauritius Telecom’s recent investments in network infrastructure. In 2023, the company invested $60 million in the T3 cable connecting Mauritius to South Africa.

Additionally, the island nation leverages the existing LION/LION2-EASSy-EIG cable for connections on the northern route.

Reesaul anticipates increased data traffic flowing through India and Singapore in the future, potentially exceeding the capacity of existing backup systems. T4 aims to mitigate this risk and ensure continued reliable connectivity.

Talks are ongoing with potential partners for the T4 consortium, including Telkom SA, Telekom Malaysia Bhd, Cable & Wireless Ltd. of the Seychelles, and China Telecom Corp.

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IZI Rwanda Delivers Electric Buses in First-of-its-Kind E-Mobility Project

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IZI Rwanda Delivers Electric Buses in First-of-its-Kind E-Mobility Project

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IZI Rwanda, a frontrunner in electric vehicle solutions, has delivered five electric buses to Kigali, Rwanda’s capital city.
 

These buses mark the beginning of a pilot project aimed at electrifying Kigali’s public transportation system at a significantly lower cost than previously anticipated.

Kigali’s population has surged by 50% since 2013, while the number of operational buses has dwindled.

This decline is primarily attributed to rising diesel costs and capped fares, often requiring buses to be 80% full just to break even.

Shrinking bus fleets have led to long wait times for commuters, impacting their daily lives and productivity.

Additionally, vehicle emissions contribute 13% of Rwanda’s greenhouse gases, necessitating a swift transition to cleaner transportation options.

The Rwandan government has actively promoted public transport electrification through various policies.

However, Public Transport Operators (PTOs) have been hesitant to invest in electric buses due to the high initial cost, uncertain resale value, and lack of local maintenance facilities.

IZI Rwanda’s innovative e-mobility-as-a-service model addresses these concerns and offers a smooth path for PTOs of all sizes to electrify their fleets.

Under this model, bus operators pay a low per-kilometer fee and gain access to IZI’s “Pay As You Go” service, including a fully electric vehicle, charging infrastructure, comprehensive vehicle maintenance, and driver training.

This eliminates upfront costs for operators, allowing them to achieve an average operational cost saving of 40%, boosting profitability and enabling them to serve the growing urban population.

A proprietary platform developed by IZI plays a crucial role in their cost-effective solution. It significantly extends the lifespan of electric vehicle batteries, thereby reducing overall vehicle costs.

The IZI Connect fleet management system, already managing over 9,000 vehicles in China, monitors battery health and facilitates predictive maintenance. This is further supported by a Battery Laboratory capable of on-site battery cell repair and replacement.

This state-of-the-art Battery Laboratory, the first of its kind in Africa, will not only service IZI’s fleet but also offer battery analysis, repair, and maintenance services to other electric vehicle users in Rwanda.

Strategically located in Kigali, the lab is expected to create specialized jobs and accelerate the adoption and growth of electric vehicles across Rwanda and East Africa.

“We believe IZI’s service model has the potential to significantly improve our business profitability and fuel our expansion,” stated Charles Ngarambe, CEO of Kigali Bus Services.

IZI Rwanda has received orders for over 200 electric buses to be deployed in Rwanda throughout 2024.

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Village Capital, Norad Partner to Launch Climate-Focused Ecosystem-Building Program in Africa

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Village Capital, Norad Partner to Launch Climate-Focused Ecosystem-Building Program in Africa

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Village Capital and the Norwegian Agency for International Development Cooperation (Norad) have launched a new initiative – Empowering Sustainable Entrepreneurship Africa, aimed at bolstering climate-focused startups and strengthening entrepreneurial ecosystems.
 

This program targets Entrepreneur Support Organizations (ESOs) and ventures in Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, and Tanzania.

Village Capital, with a long history of supporting entrepreneurs in Sub-Saharan Africa (over 14 accelerator programs since 2012), will bring its expertise to the table. Norad, a champion of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), will contribute its global partnership experience.

Empowering Sustainable Entrepreneurship Africa takes a two-pronged approach.

First, it will equip ESOs, often the backbone of local entrepreneurial communities, with the technical skills and resources they need to thrive.

Second, it will directly support climate-focused startups in the target countries, fostering a pipeline of high-growth ventures tackling critical areas like renewable energy, food security, and climate adaptation solutions.

“ESOs are essential,” said Rachel Crawford, leading special projects at Village Capital. “They provide crucial support to entrepreneurs, acting as trainers and connectors to vital networks like investors and talent.”

“But these ESOs often face similar challenges to the startups they help. Village Capital’s unique program design addresses this by combining ecosystem development, venture support, and access to capital,” Crawford added.

Per Fredrik Ilsaas Pharo, Norad’s director of climate and environment, echoed the program’s significance. “Entrepreneurs are drivers of change for the SDGs,” he said. “This partnership tackles the barriers they face – limited access to funding and technical support – by strengthening the ESO ecosystem.”

“The program’s multi-sectoral approach, focusing on areas like the blue economy and climate adaptation, positions it to make a significant contribution to African innovation and entrepreneurship,” Pharo concluded.

For ESOs in the targeted countries interested in program details and engagement opportunities, Village Capital will host an information session. This session will delve deeper into the program and its eligibility criteria.

To learn more and express interest in the information session, contact Ahmed Fadl, program manager at Village Capital (ahmed.fadl@vilcap.com).

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