Mall for Africa Boosts Prosperity
Mall for Africa boosts prosperity by allowing African consumers to purchase items from retailers located in the United States and the United Kingdom. The company’s innovation offers a secure and easy way for African citizens to purchase items online.

The Foundation of Mall for Africa

Chris Folayan, a Nigerian citizen and the founder and CEO of Mall for Africa, opened Mall for Africa in 2016. Foloyan founded this organization in Nigeria because this nation is the most affluent and high-powered country in Africa. Folayan has plans for Mall for Africa to expand in several other African nations as well, such as Ghana and Kenya.

The primary objective of Mall for Africa is for customers to purchase items from the U.S. and the U.K. and to market their own goods effectively in the absence of fraud and theft. Companies transport their products to the United States and United Kingdom infrastructures. Africa then receives the items.

In 2018, Mall for Africa began coordinating with the United States Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) in order to construct facilities in 15 of Africa’s nations. The purpose of this was to reduce shipping costs from international companies and allow for secure payment methods with provincial dollars.

Africans who make purchases online often pay high-cost fees for shipping items. To counter this, Mall for Africa opened storehouses in Portland, Oregon and London to reduce transportation costs. Furthermore, customers are able to purchase items using their own currency through new payment options.

Market Advantages

Mall for Africa boosts prosperity in Africa because of the availability of supplies and materials that generate employment opportunities, improve schooling and new forms of medical treatment. In particular, one entrepreneur purchased a sewing machine which enabled her to begin her own sewing operation. Educational institutions have benefited from Mall for Africa by having the ability to purchase necessary academic materials. These materials include items such as computers and books.

The medical field has benefited from the ability to obtain medical equipment. This gives doctors the ability to effectively pronounce medical conditions and offer treatment options.

Mall for Africa has helped create jobs for Nigerian residents. For instance, more than 60 citizens work full-time. Some expect the number of workers to increase with the implementation of new infrastructures in other African countries.

Since the company first launched, Mall for Africa has boosted prosperity in terms of profit. In fact, it has produced millions of dollars in yearly profits. An expansion of profits should happen due to the implementation of this business in other African nations. In 2019, Nigeria and Kenya are expecting to see a large increase in sales due to the development of various enterprises and the expansion of the working class earning more pay.

eBay’s Collaboration with Mall for Africa

While Africans are able to purchase products overseas as of 2017, Americans now have the ability to purchase original artifacts from Africa through the Mall for Africa application on eBay. Residents in some countries have the ability to sell their artifacts through eBay and market these products to U.S. consumers. Some of these countries include Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, South Africa and Burundi. The commodities will be available through the Mall for Africa application on eBay, which enables entrepreneurs to expand brand awareness and increase economic prosperity in Africa.

The primary groupings of products are fashion, antiques and jewelry. Mall for Africa will likely include other groupings in the future with the addition of other African countries selling their products.

Mall for Africa’s shipping co-partner, DHL, handles the transportation of all packages. The merchant packages their items then delivers the package to the closest DHL shipping facility. In February 2017, DHL reported a substantial rise in international sales. The company predicts that by 2020 the online market will progress at a rate of 25 percent annually. That is close to double the volume of sales achieved nationally.

While this partnership is expected to expand inventory to the United States, there will also be opportunities for economic advancement for Africans who now have the option of selling their products internationally. Overall, Mall for Africa boosts prosperity for the African continent.

– Diana Dopheide
Photo: Flickr

DHL To Invest Millions in Sub-Saharan Africa, Sets Example for Foreign Direct Investment
Logistics leader DHL has joined the ranks of companies taking advantage of Sub-Saharan Africa’s potential for economic growth, which experts anticipate will coincide with continued improvements in infrastructure.

While the number of foreign direct investments (FDI) has decreased in recent years, capital investment in Africa has largely increased. Today’s average investment is US$174.5 million per project, up from US$67.8 million in 2013.

“The perception of investing in Africa has traditionally been rather negative, coupled with the fear of the unknown,” said Managing Director of DHL’s Sub-Saharan Africa region, Charles Brewer. “However, in 2014, traditional investors refocused their attention on the continent, attracted by its strong macroeconomic growth and outlook, improving business environment, a rising consumer class, abundant natural resources and infrastructure development.”

Improvements in infrastructure can be extremely cost-effective in developing regions, where underdeveloped infrastructure tends to increase costs for people and companies like DHL. According to African Business Review, supply chain costs are up to nine times more expensive in Africa than other regions around the world. Investments in infrastructure projects help streamline the supply chain and thus create more favorable economic environments for foreign and domestic companies alike.

According to economist and director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, Jeffrey Sachs, Africa will need to adopt an infrastructure-heavy plan to achieve double-digit economic growth in the coming years. According to him, that program ought to include large-scale investments in trans-national infrastructure projects in the way of power, roads, broadband and other basic infrastructural needs.

“There is no choice; Africa needs 10 percent per year of economic growth over the next 15 years,” Sachs said.

One institution working to increase investment in these infrastructure projects is the European Investment Bank (EIB), which plans to open offices in Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Zambia and Mozambique within the next year. Investments like the EIB’s US$43.8 million water and sanitation project in Ethiopia will help narrow what The World Bank estimates to be a US$93 million funding gap for African infrastructure development.

“Growth will remain strong in most low-income countries, owing to infrastructure investment and agriculture expansion,” wrote The World Bank in its outlook for Africa earlier this year. “However, extreme poverty remains high across the region. Foreign Direct Investments fell in 2014, reflecting slower growth in emerging markets and declining commodity prices. Several countries including Cote d’Ivoire, Kenya and Senegal, were able to tap international bond markets to finance infrastructure projects.”

As companies like DHL continue to invest in infrastructural improvements across the African continent, businesses will become better able to minimize the challenges resulting from a lack of reliable power and other supply-side obstacles. Streamlining the supply chain in developing countries can also save massive amounts of money for American companies hoping to tap into new and emerging markets. If such investment continues, Africa might well meet its goal of double-digit economic growth within the next 10 years, and regional markets could become the forces for poverty reduction that economists like Jeffrey Sachs believe they can be.

– Zach VeShancey

Sources: Daily Independent, African Business Review, MG Africa, The World Bank
Photo: AfricanBrains/span>

DHL in Africa
Ken Allen, CEO of DHL, has a lot to celebrate:  business in Africa is booming. DHL is in business to make a profit. Luckily for Africa, their business is working out the logistics of connecting frontiers of business to demanding consumers. The numbers for Africa make it an extremely appealing continent in terms of frontiers: there is a 2:1 inbound ratio. As export/import experts, DHL fits right in. They have an office in most countries and offices in all major cities. They partner with retail and other outlets to take advantage of expanding networks.

It is not all smooth sailing for DHL in Africa. There are still the issues of navigating through many countries without clearly marked street signs and the prevalent corruption. Allen responds that DHL has been in Africa for 25-30 years. The logistics of getting around in a place without street signs has been worked out: DHL flies their planes into Legos, for example, then uses smaller DHL carriers to get to regional destinations. As for the corruption, DHL is not a government watch-dog. They are in business to do business. Allen states that most officials see DHL as a positive force and corruption is stronger in perception than in reality. Their role is not to question or change the strict customs regulations, but to interface on behalf of their customers and the regulations to make the transactions as smooth as possible. The goal of DHL is to build the best architecture to make it easy to do business.

Katherine Zobre

Source: CNN