Published in May 2017

Africa needs an innovation revolution - here’s how it can happen

"Another important development has been the increase in smartphone penetration across Africa. Between 2014 and 2016, the number of smartphone connections across the continent doubled to 226 million while the cost of a smartphone dropped from an average of $230 in 2012 to $160 in 2015, according to a report published by GSMA(

By 2021, a further half a billion smartphone connections are expected to be added, taking the adoption rate to more than half of total connections in the region. The implications of this for e-commerce, in particular, are immense.

In financial services, innovators have taken advantage of the rise of mobile phones and the absence of cumbersome legacy systems to create new solutions that support financial inclusion."

By Andy Baldwin - Area Managing Partner – Europe, Middle East, India and Africa, EY