Mobile economy grows in Africa as it reaches rural areas

Africa’s mobile economy in numbers

Here are some estimates of the growth potential of the mobile economy in sub-Saharan Africa, according to industry association GSMA. The GSMA report The Mobile Economy Sub-Saharan Africa was published Sept 2021 with figures up to December 2020.

  • By end of 2020, 495m people were subscribed to mobile services in Sub-Saharan Africa, 46% of the population and up 20% on 2019.
  • Primary source of growth in new users is young people owning a mobile phone for the first time, as 40% of population are under 15 years old.
  • It is estimated there will be 120m new subscribers by 2025 to 615m (share of population 50%). This is 4.4% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) over 2020-2025. Out of the new subscribers, 22m will be in Nigeria and 15m will be in Ethiopia.
  • SIM Connections will rise from 930m in 2020 to 1.12bn by 2025, which is CAGR 4.8%
  • Mobile internet: In 2020,  303m were connected to mobile internet (28% of the population), and the estimate is there will be 170m more by 2025 (40% of the population) to 474m, CAGR 9.3%.
  • Mobile technologies and services generated over $130bn (8% of GDP) and this will be $155bn by 2025.
  • Transactions on mobile money platforms were $490bn end 2020.
  • The mobile sector makes $15bn contribution to public funding, before regulatory and spectrum fees
  • The mobile ecosystem supported 300,000 formal jobs, plus 1.1m informal jobs.
  • Total revenues from mobile phone industry were $44.2bn in 2020, and are forecast to rise to $56.2bn in 2025, assuming operator capex of $45bn over 2020-2025.
  • Smartphones were 48% of connections in 2020, rising to 64% by 2025. Top three markets in 2025 will be Nigeria (163m smartphones, South Africa 89m and Kenya 52m)
  • Mobile data traffic (GB per subscriber per month) to rise more than fourfold (4.1x) from 2.2 to 9.0 by 2026.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *