5 Untapped Industries that Can Make Billionaires in Africa
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Industry - April 14, 2023

5 Untapped Industries that Can Make Billionaires in Africa

Africa is home to a number of untapped industries that entrepreneurs and investors can explore to become billionaires and drive economic growth across the continent.

Identifying the challenges and leveraging the strengths of these industries can drive innovation, create jobs, and generate wealth for Africans and their communities. Let’s dive in.

Real Estate 

Real Estate is a budding industry on the African continent, with young entrepreneurs making generating significant fortunes for themselves. Despite this, real estate is billed to produce more billionaires on the continent. This can only be possible if the problem of fraud and lack of trust can be solved.

Entrepreneurs who are looking to jump into real estate should be looking to provide solutions to problems of fraud. They can develop an app that ascertains the credibility of real estate agents and properties. They can also establish a startup that provides technical solutions to the challenges of acquiring and managing rentals. For example, Hostel is an online marketplace that provides student accommodations based on their preferences.

Finance & Investment 

Out of Africa’s 19 billionaires, only Othman Benjelloun and Michiel Le Roux are taking advantage of the finance and investment industry. This shows that there is plenty of room for more billionaires. To tap into this industry, entrepreneurs can utilise technology platforms like online investment marketplaces like Bamboo, and crowdfunding platforms like Betterworld.

Importantly, African entrepreneurs can launch financial advisory platforms that can offer financial services to their local community. The platform would provide solutions to those looking for capital, and connect local businesses with international investors.

Energy solution

Africa has abundant natural resources such as wind, solar, and hydro energy, which can be harnessed to meet the growing demand for energy on the continent. Despite these natural resources the continent still struggles with huge energy challenges. Nigeria, the giant of Africa for example still lacks a local oil refining capacity, which has exposed it to unpredictable fuel price changes in the international market. The failure of the nation’s energy policy has largely influenced the lives of many as businesses have shut down and a lot of jobs have been lost. 

Entrepreneurs can tap into this industry by providing small decentralised solutions. For example, Olivia Nava and Sachi DeCou of Tanzania teamed up to introduce solar-powered kiosks that charge mobile phones in off-grid areas. Their company Juabar has built a franchise network of micro-business owners who offer phone charging services. If you are seeking to be a billionaire in Africa, providing basic solutions to energy problems is the way to go.


Africa’s manufacturing industry has produced billionaires like Africa’s richest person, Aliko Dangote, the founder and CEO of Dangote Group, a conglomerate with interests in various industries such as cement, sugar, flour, salt, and oil among others. While we applaud his business acumen and unwavering commitment to the development of Africa’s manufacturing sector, it’s important to say that the industry can still produce more billionaires. 

Entrepreneurs can take advantage of this sector by introducing cost-effective solutions to produce things that matter in their local communities. By doing this, they will be attending to some of the challenges in the sector and making billions of dollars for themselves. Also, they can identify products that have high import tariffs and look for ways to produce them locally.

Health care

According to reports, Africa imports 94% of its pharmaceuticals, with local manufacturers producing only 25%–30% of pharmaceuticals and less than 10% of medical supplies. This is one reason why entrepreneurs need to tap into this sector. Other healthcare challenges are the limited number of trained medical professionals and the lack of quality control for medicine.

Entrepreneurs can tap into this industry by establishing a health tech startup that caters to the average or low-income African. They can emulate the founders of RxALL and True-Spec Africa, who both developed AI-powered scanners for determining the legitimacy of drugs. They can also develop apps that facilitate easy access to healthcare facilities in their local communities.

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