Category Archives: Informal & Flexible

Why does the prepaid model work so well and what are the lessons for business model innovation?

Increasingly, employment is becoming ad hoc and flexible. The gig economy and the informal sector share a common characteristic of incomes which are irregular and unpredictable, unlike the timely wages characteristic of formal employment. Both budgeting and planning thus become a challenge when there’s no predictable paycheck to rely on. Expenses are managed against cash […]

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The African Informal Sector: GDP Contribution vs Scale of Human Impact

The informal economy in sub Saharan Africa (SSA) tends to be measured as a share of GDP, counting its contribution to the national economy. By this metric, Nigeria has the most economically empowered informal sector, contributing over 60% to the GDP. On the other extreme, South Africa, has one of the smallest contributions to the […]

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Connectivity, Communication, and Commerce: The 3 Cs of Africa’s Smartphone Led Future

Recent headlines touted the decline in marketshare being seen by smartphones on the African continent, and the concurrent increase in sales of basic devices. Yet a closer look shows that this shift might only be numerical due to the opening of new markets in heavily populated DR Congo and Ethiopia – first time buyers are […]

Also posted in Africa, African Consumer Market, Airtime, Analysis, Assumption filter, Business, Business Models, Commerce en ligne (e-commerce), Consumer Behaviour, Emerging Markets, Marchés africains, Marketing, Mobile platform, Perspective, Platforms, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa, Technology | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Mobile First Africa: Social Media’s Boost to Rural Productivity in Kenya

Now in business for just six months, he also uses social media pages to sell his products, improving his customer reach. “Through Facebook posts I receive enquiries and orders from Kenyans in the diaspora living in the US, South Korea, South Sudan, UK, Switzerland and Botswana who want the splits to be delivered to their […]

Also posted in Africa, African Consumer Market, Biashara Economics, Business Models, Commerce en ligne (e-commerce), Kenya, Marchés africains, Marketing, Mobile platform, Perspective, Platforms, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, rural, Rural Economy, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa, Technology | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Why the African Consumer Market is NOT the same as the African Middle Class

The biggest challenge faced by consumer facing companies looking at the African Consumer Market is the age old positioning of the “middle class” as the ideal target audience. This middle class is segmented by the same attributes as the original middle classes who formed the consumer markets of the developed world. This is the outside […]

Also posted in Africa, African Consumer Market, Assumption filter, Biashara Economics, Business Models, Cattle, Consumer Behaviour, Economy, Emerging Markets, Indigenous & Traditional, Kenya, Livestock, Marchés africains, Marketing, Perspective, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Retail in Africa, Rural Economy, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Zambia’s inclusive approach to various sectors in the informal economy is worth noting

The Zambian government most recently announced that they would provide certificates to illegal (artisanal) miners in order to recognize and formalize their activities. In addition, they were being encouraged to form cooperatives – a legally recognized organizational structure – that would permit further benefits to this informal sector. Compared to the challenges Ghana is facing […]

Also posted in Africa, African Consumer Market, Biashara Economics, Emerging Markets, Flexibility, Frameworks, Indigenous & Traditional, Mama Biashara, Marchés africains, Marketing, Migrant worker, Perspective, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Retail in Africa, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa, urban | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

East African Imports in rural Rwanda?

This highway ‘storefront’ in rural Rwanda made me wonder if the trader had imported his goods rather than purchased them locally. And, further, if they were imports from Kenya. First, unlike the majority of such roadside shops, he is dealing with multiple products – while all are related to home decor, they are made of […]

Also posted in Africa, African Consumer Market, Afrique francophone, Analysis, Assumption filter, Biashara Economics, Consommateurs, East African Community, Flexibility, Marchés africains, Marketing, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, rural, Rural Economy, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Trading economics: a new theoretical system

From the Financial Times, a snippet from a guest post by Wang Zhenying, director-general of the research and statistics department at the PBoC’s Shanghai head office and vice chairman of the Shanghai Financial Studies Association, summarising the arguments in his new Chinese-language textbook on economics. “Trading economics” is one new theory emerging against this backdrop. […]

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Mobiles at the Border Post: Anti-Atlas of Borders Exhibition Slides (Jan 2016)

In January 2016, our submission for the Anti-Atlas of Borders Art Exhibition in Brussels was accepted for a commission of 500e. We were thrilled and surprised since we’d never imagined our work on mobile platforms, technology, and the borderland biashara could be considered from the arts and culture point of view. Here is our story […]

Also posted in Africa, African Consumer Market, Afrique francophone, Airtime, Biashara Economics, Business Models, Consommateurs, Consumer Behaviour, Design, Kenya, Marchés africains, Migrant worker, Mobile platform, Photography, Platforms, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Research, Systems, Technologie, Technology, Uganda | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Unique Path to Development Seen for the Informal Economy

Just recently I stumbled over this slim book < 60 pages that analyzed existing data sources in order to frame an answer to the research question they posed: How did the informal economy―markets and the private sector―develop in the absence of legal and administrative frameworks to support it? Some of the most intriguing insights extracted […]

Also posted in Assumption filter, Base of the Pyramid, Biashara Economics, Business Models, Cashless transactions, China, Economy, Ecosystem, Emerging Markets, Flexibility, Frugality, global, Income, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Produits de grande consommation (FMCG), Report Review, Research, rural, Rural Economy, Savings, Scarcity, Strategy, Systems, UCSD, Value | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment