Business ideas for youth in Africa

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Foreign investors know Africa is a fast-growing continent with lots of money to make. Since Africa’s a small and poor economy, many investors and businesses need to be made aware of its many opportunities.

However, several African countries have undergone economic reforms. They are now among the best places to invest, especially since their returns are higher than those in the developed world.

Africa had 9 of the 15 fastest-growing economies and a 14% annual return on investment. African farmlands and human and natural resources will become more valuable as the global population grows.

Africa has low wages and is closer to North America and Europe than Asia, so that it can grow its manufacturing base. Only 12% of Africa’s trade is domestic.

Smart and innovative investors see endless opportunities in Africa as China has over 70% of its Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in several African countries. Western nations, Russia and Turkey, are investing more in Africa.

Healthy Food Manufacturing

Africans have joined the global fitness craze. Africans still import gluten-free powders, protein powders, healthy shakes, smoothie powders, and sugar substitutes.

Foreigners are happy to invest in businesses that meet growing demand, and Africa can easily make some of these items.

Green Engineering

Green engineering firms are attracting foreign investments and grants from governments, individuals, and groups concerned with global warming and environmental protection.

Home Automation

Google’s Alexa lets you remotely control home devices and systems.

While at work, you can turn off the oven, dishwasher, and security cameras. Home automation devices promote security and reduce stress. Many people worldwide are adopting this trend, which has yet to reach Africa.

Self-Driving Vehicles

Start a self-driving vehicle dealership or manufacturer for African markets to attract foreign direct investment quickly. Some GPS-equipped vehicles can drive themselves.

Drone Tech

Foreign investors are funding African drone companies that solve problems and improve lives. The military or security agencies can use drones for surveillance, crime-fighting, rescue, engineering, and other purposes.

Automated Goods Delivery

Some US companies use automated delivery services to deliver products to customers. Due to their poor road networks, many African cities could benefit from such services. It can also help logistics companies avoid robberies and other security issues when delivering goods to consumers.

Tourism and Hospitality

Many tourists visit Africa to experience its rich culture and stunning scenery. You can exploit many African tourism niches. You can innovate like Air B’n’B, which received much direct funding.

Shopping Malls

African nations are only now adopting shopping mall culture. Suppose you can find a strategic location with high traffic and revenue. In that case, you can get large foreign investment for your shopping mall project. In recent years, Nigeria had many foreign-funded shopping mall projects in major cities.

Mobile Phone Manufacturing

Africans use mostly Chinese and American phones. You can create a business that manufactures and assembles high-quality mobile phones in Africa. In that case, you can easily attract foreign investors.

Fashion Lines

Clothing, especially shoes and bags, are imported into Africa in alarming quantities. Since Africans are fashion-conscious, a business that manufactures ready-to-wear clothing and reduces imports will attract foreign investment due to its high-profit potential.

Biofuel Production

Biofuel is another business idea. Africans need help with high fuel prices for cooking, vehicles, and manufacturing. Biofuel converts waste into fuel, solving this issue. Bio-fuel refineries could also attract foreign direct investment.


E-Commerce still needs new niches and ideas. Shopify created a unique E-commerce business that succeeded despite Amazon and eBay’s market dominance. Many people prefer to shop online, making e-commerce one of the most profitable industries. Foreign investors will partner with you if your idea is unique, like Shopify.

Cryptocurrency Startups

Foreign investors know the cryptocurrency revolution is unstoppable. African and global cryptocurrency startups are attracting foreign investors.

Medical cannabis

Since medical marijuana is new in Africa, a farm with processing and packaging facilities is another trending business with foreign investment potential.

Cybersecurity Solutions

Cybersecurity startups are also attracting global investors. As many brick-and-mortar businesses move online, almost everyone will need internet services.

Sharing Economy

Businesses that promote sharing are also receiving attention. Saving money makes these services popular. Uber, AirBnB, and other sharing economy businesses can receive foreign investment.

Money Lending Apps

Many people need quick cash before payday, but many African countries do not have credit cards to pay emergency bills. This led to money-lending apps for emergency bills. This is another business idea that can attract foreign investors seeking African business opportunities.

Digital Banking Solutions

Another innovative business idea is East African M-pesa digital banking. Many investors want to join M-Pesa’s East African success.

Alternative Energy

Another lucrative African business is alternative energy. Many African nations have yet to master 24/7 electricity. Investors and citizens of energy-strapped nations will embrace a non-traditional power source.

Affordable Housing

Unfortunately, many Africans cannot afford housing, especially in urban areas, essential for survival.

Trailer houses, tiny houses, and houses made of non-traditional materials can help African cities solve housing issues. Foreign investment and grants are easy to get for life-saving businesses.


E-Health services allow patients to see doctors and get prescriptions at home. Phone or online consultations are common. This is another popular foreign investment business idea.


Nanorobots kill bacteria and pathogens in the body. They are replacing synthetic drugs and chemicals worldwide. This innovative business can attract foreign investors when you bring it to Africa.

Solid Minerals Extraction

Africa has gold, iron ore, tin, columbite, and diamonds. Explore and sell these minerals. These firms attract foreign investment.

Virtual Reality Centers

Tourism and entertainment are embracing VR centers. Entertainment and tourism investors can provide foreign funding.

Gaming apps are lucrative. Some gaming apps make hundreds of millions. This is another business idea that can attract international investors.

Wastewater Recycling

Waste water recycling is a growing technology that benefits water-scarce African nations. Wastewater recycling technology filters used or impure water for drinking or other uses. Foreign investors are flocking to Africa for this business idea.

Agricultural Processing

Despite its abundant food resources, Africa imports processed foods from other continents, especially America and China.

African companies are learning how easy food processing and packaging are. This category attracts foreign direct investment because homegrown and processed food is cheaper and more profitable.

Internet Service Providers

GSM Service providers profited from African expansion. GSM is now being replaced by texting apps with calling features. Foreign investors are targeting African ISPs as they prepare to replace GSM providers in the coming years.

Electrical Vehicles

TESLA dealerships attract foreign direct investment in African countries with reliable power.

TESLA makes electric cars in America. TESLA dealerships have yet to be available in Africa, but the innovation is popular in the US and other continents.

Artificial Intelligence and Robots

Foreign investors are also interested in robot-staffed supermarkets, hotels with robot room service, logistics companies that use AI to move goods, etc.

AI improves efficiency and lowers HR management costs, making businesses more profitable.

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