Sensational Seventeen: South African Companies Dominate Top 50

By Raine St.Claire

South Africa shines with 17 entities in the top 50 of Africa’s 100 fastest growing companies for 2023, as revealed by The Financial Times and Statista’s annual ranking. In its second year, the ranking underscores the remarkable expansion of companies in fintech, renewable energy, healthcare, commodities, and agriculture. This growth occurred at a time when much of the world was grappling with the impacts of the pandemic, highlighting the resilience and growth of businesses across diverse sectors despite challenges stemming from the global lockdown in 2021.

Nigeria takes the lead with the top two fastest-growing companies. AFEX, specialising in brokerage and trade finance services for commodities such as maize, sorghum, cocoa, and rice, secures the 1st position with an impressive compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) exceeding 500% over three years. Following closely in 2nd place is Lagos-based Moniepoint, providing banking services tailored for small businesses.

A Kenyan e-commerce company, previously ranked #1, has secured the 3rd position this year. the company aids small traders in accessing inventory through enhanced supply chains across seven African countries, boosting efficiency. While start-ups dominate the list, there is a significant representation of Energy & Utilities companies. Established companies in metals and mining, telecoms, and construction also feature prominently in the top 100.

In the top 100 fastest-growing companies, Achill, a Namibian winery, holds the 14th position with a CAGR of 89.327%. Following closely, Victory Farms, a Kenyan fish farm, secures the 15th spot with a GaCR of 87.864%. additionally, Vertice Medtech, a South African company specialising in remote hearing tests, ranks 28th with a CAGR of 53.643%. The diverse rankings highlight the dynamic and varied nature of Africa’s fastest-growing companies. this demonstrates their ability to flourish across different sectors, making significant contributions to the continent’s economic development.

#1. AFEX Commodities Exchange Ltd.

  • Brand: AFEX
  • Country: Nigeria
  • Industry: Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing
  • CAGR: 505%
  • Revenue: $102-million
  • Number of employees: 278

#2. Moniepoint, Inc. (formerly TeamApt, Inc.)

  • Brand: Moniepoint
  • Country: Nigeria
  • Industry: Fintech, Financial Services & insurance
  • CAGR: 321%
  • Revenue: $62.6-million
  • Number of employees: 538

#3. Sokowatch Ltd.

  • Brand: Wasoko
  • Country: Kenya
  • Industry: E-commerce
  • CAGR: 242%
  • Revenue: $136.9-million
  • Number of employees: 1490

#4. Altech

  • Brand: Altech
  • Country: DRC
  • Industry: Energy & Utilities
  • CAGR: 214%
  • Revenue: $17-million
  • Number of employees: 4000

#5. The Africaworks Group of Companies

  • Brand: Africaworks
  • Country: Mauritius
  • Industry: Real estate
  • CAGR: 190%
  • Revenue: $6.8-million
  • Number of employees: 105

#6. Deimos Cloud Pty Ltd.

  • Brand: Deimos
  • Country: South Africa
  • Industry: IT & Software
  • CAGR: 178%
  • Revenue: $6.8-million
  • Number of employees: 68

With an Impressive 33 Nominations in The Top 100 Fastest Growing Companies in Africa, 17 of Those Feature in the Top 50!

  • #6 Deimos Cloud Pty Ltd.
  • #12 Bluesky Digital Solutions
  • #23 Northam Platinum Holdings ltd.
  • #28 Vertice Medtech Holdings Pty ltd.
  • #31 Routed Hosting Pty ltd.
  • #33 Sibanye Stillwater ltd.
  • #36 Herholdt’S Group Pty ltd.
  • #37 Luxity Pty ltd.
  • #38 Linkfields Innovations Pty Ltd.
  • #40 Leatt Corp.
  • #41 Nclose Pty ltd.
  • #42 Purple Group ltd.
  • #45 Entelect Software Pty ltd.
  • #47 Iser Pty ltd.
  • #48 Hearx Group
  • #49 Pan African Resources Plc

The latest ranking highlights significant changes and opportunities for African businesses due to the pandemic-driven boost in digitalisation. Sectors like digital finance, payments, trade facilitation, and healthcare have reaped substantial benefits. According to San Francisco based tech and digital investment platform Partech, African tech start-ups raised $5.2-billion in 2021, three times more than the previous year, indicating the growing interest and investment in the African start-up ecosystem.

The report also shows that African companies are gaining attention from international investors, leading to increased valuations. As many fast-growing companies, often private, do not share detailed financial data, this ranking is an approximation. However, it maintains credibility through a strict screening process where senior executives validate figures, offering valuable insights into companies navigating a complex business landscape.

Source: Financial Times | Statista | Business Insider Africa