African global business services sector to grow to $19.8 billion by 2023 – research

Knowledge Executive GBS BPO sector Africa South Egypt

A new report by market researcher Knowledge Executive shows Africa’s Global Business Services (GBS) is expected to grow to nearly $20 billion by 2023.

The company published the findings in the 2021 Africa Global Business Services (GBS) Benchmarking and Market Report.

It said the report affirms Africa as a rising industry powerhouse.

The report found South Africa is the continent’s largest GBS player by market share.

“Business process outsourcing (BPO) and information technology outsourcing (ITO) are at the forefront of Africa’s rapid growth rates,” Knowledge Executive said in a statement.

“This growth is bolstered by multiple factors, including improved economic governance, relative political stability, an abundance of educated youth within the continent’s labour pool, comparatively lower salary and labour costs, in addition to focused efforts from African policymakers to support this crucial sector.”

To conduct the research, Knowledge Executive surveyed over 500 GBS service providers and delivery centres across 19 African countries.

Findings of the Knowledge Executive report

The report estimates Africa’s combined domestic and international GBS sector to be worth $15.1 billion.

It expects the sector to grow to $19.8 billion within the next two years.

The report found that South Africa is the continent’s largest GBS player by market share. It values the country’s share at around $4.7 billion.

South Africa’s local GBS sector employs over 261 082 workers. The country has a large English-speaking workforce competent in most outsourcing services.

Executives rated the country best in terms of back-office processing and customer administration service delivery.

Egypt has the second largest GBS market share in Africa, employing over 240 000 workers. The report values the country’s share at over $4 billion, excluding IT services.

Executives rated Egypt the best for digital contact centre and data management services.

The report also listed countries that have emerging GBS and BPO sectors. The countries include Rwanda, Botswana, Morocco, Tunisia, Kenya, Ghana, Senegal, and Zimbabwe.

Read more: Nigerian startup Sabi reaches 150 000 small businesses, $1.2 billion in sales

Read more: Report reveals local women entrepreneurs bridge digital divide in SME sector 

Featured image: LinkedIn Sales Solutions via Unsplash

Sam Spiller, Staff Writer


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