Opinion: Entrepreneurship and E-commerce Ripe In Africa

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Written by Kevin Mwanza

From Ventures Africa

Despite what they naysayers claim about widespread fraud and easier access to goods through the markets of other countries, Africa (and Kenya in particular) is ripe for entrepreneurship – e-commerce in particular.

If there’s one business model that seems to be generating the most success in Africa, it’s the “simple” model. Creating easy to crack business models that allow companies to make money early on while growing slowly and strategically gives startups a greater chance at success versus other models. Easy-to-execute ideas, especially online business/e-commerce models are allowing African entrepreneurs to dip their toes into the business world to get a feel for the water.

Those willing to put in the work and realize that success will rarely, if ever, come overnight will be best poised to grow in the African economy. They are the ones who will learn every aspect of their business and, when the time is right, will be able to hand tasks to the right team members as growth happens.

Late nights, stress and creative problem-solving come with the territory for entrepreneurs, and not everybody is up for this kind of work when the idea is not their own. Fortunately, there is a large pool of talented people in Africa who are eager to gain experience and do whatever it takes to be part of a successful, and profitable, startup. It’s this talent pool that is re-branding many African nations as open for business on a regional and global scale.

Barriers to Success?

One large, yet surmountable, barrier that stands between many African entrepreneurs and a successful business is the continents diverse payment landscape. M-Pesa, for example, is popular in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda – three countries where there are more mobile money accounts than bank accounts. However, some merchants are wary of M-Pesa and other mobile money providers because the system is arguably new and not fully understood by all in business.

Read more at Venture Africa