Traffic flows along Kenyatta avenue in downtown Nairobi, Kenya
Downtown Nairobi, home to top-ranked company Wasoko © Thomas Mukoya/Reuters

The inaugural FT annual ranking of Africa’s Fastest Growing Companies (below) provides a snapshot of corporate landscape in a continent where technology, fintech and support-service businesses have had to adapt to a radically altered environment.  

Chief among the recent challenges has been operating within the tough restrictions introduced by many African governments to combat Covid-19. In the end, outside of South Africa and parts of north Africa, the health impact has been less severe than many feared. But the economic consequences of lockdown — especially in crowded urban settings where many live hand to mouth — have been devastating.

A possible silver lining is that the pandemic has accelerated business trends already under way. From banks to education providers, and from start-ups to established businesses, companies have shifted further online and sought fresh solutions for customers and societies as a whole.

Wasoko, formerly Sokowatch, which heads the ranking, is one of several on the continent seeking to cut the cost of doing business in the massive informal commerce sector, by helping to deliver goods to traders more efficiently. The Kenyan company achieved the highest compound annual growth in revenues between 2017 and 2020 and, in March, raised $125mn in a Series B funding round.

Kenya is the third most represented country in the ranking, with nine companies, behind South Africa (24) and Nigeria (20), and ahead of Egypt (six). These are also the markets that have attracted the most venture capital and where unicorns (companies valued at $1bn+) and would-be unicorns have proliferated.

Many of the fastest-growing companies, especially in fintech sector, are those seeking to tap Africa’s unbanked population, or markets that have previously been underserved or ignored. The health and education sectors, for example — spurred by unmet need and rising aspirations — are among those offering most scope for growth.

Not all the fastest-expanding companies are high-tech, however. Some, such as AfricaWorks, offer co-working spaces — a real estate model that has had its difficulties but could plausibly benefit from hybrid post-Covid working patterns. More traditional companies, among them miners and construction firms, also make the list, proving that not all fast growth is digital.

Still, much attention is likely to be paid to the innovative start-ups now attracting record funding, many of which are touting scaleable solutions to Africa’s deep-seated problems. It will be worth watching the FT’s Africa ranking in years ahead to find out which companies prove enduring enough to move the needle.

This inaugural FT list was compiled with Statista, a research company, and ranks African companies by their compound annual growth rate (CAGR) in revenue, between 2017 and 2020. Readers can also use the arrows at the top of columns in the table below to sort companies by country, by sector or by revenue.

Because many fast-growing companies are privately held and do not publicly disclose detailed financial data, a ranking such as this can never claim to be complete. But the rigorous screening process (see methodology, below), which also requires senior executives to sign off on the figures submitted by their companies, means the ranking can offer a meaningful insight into the health of these private businesses.

Scroll below the table for the full methodology.

Africa’s Fastest Growing Companies 2022
RankCompany nameBrandCountrySectorAbsolute growth rate (%)Compound annual growth rate (CAGR, %)Revenues 2020 ($mn)Revenues 2017 ($mn)Number of employees 2020Number of employees 2017Founding year
1Wasoko (formerly Sokowatch, Inc.)WasokoKenyaTechnology8782.594%346.183%27.4470.309372572016
2Flocash Ltd.FlocashKenyaFintech5160.582%274.695%6.3800.12182202013
3AFEX Commodities Exchange Ltd.AFEXNigeriaAgricultural Commodities4289.795%252.761%31.6780.848199982014
4The AfricaWorks Group of CompaniesAfricaWorksMauritiusSupport Services3766.393%238.144%5.2990.13612792017
5Zedcrest Capital Ltd.Zedcrest GroupNigeriaFinancial Services1481.767%151.023%43.5043.231455152013
6Starsight Power Utility Ltd.Starsight EnergyNigeriaEnergy1154.403%132.351%8.8860.832108422015
7Lori Systems Corp.Lori SystemsKenyaTransport762.297%105.062%25.0222.902142202017
8Kawai Technologies Ltd.Kawai TechnologiesNigeriaSupport Services535.661%85.243%4.9470.914532007
9West African Soy Industries Ltd.WASILNigeriaAgricultural Commodities507.668%82.482%116.50122.521276702015
10Northam Platinum Ltd.Northam PlatinumSouth AfricaPrecious metals331.663%62.822%1,980.088567.08618,28813,2581977
11Quick Mart Ltd.Quick MartKenyaRetail310.969%60.178%162.08640.3933,2657082006
12Long4Life Ltd.Long4LifeSouth AfricaFinancial Services304.921%59.388%217.60066.4352,4622,0152016
13Africa’s Talking Ltd.Africa’s TalkingKenyaTechnology296.248%58.242%13.3403.367101332010
14Royal Bafokeng Platinum Ltd.RBPLATSouth AfricaPrecious metals282.432%56.381%812.650262.69910,5938,3722008
15Zambia Seed Company Ltd.ZamseedZambiaAgricultural Commodities278.995%55.911%9.2984.7251281211971
16eAdvance Pty Ltd.SPARK SchoolsSouth AfricaEducation276.301%55.541%20.0586.5901,0605062012
17IT Consortium Ltd.ITCONSORTIUMGhanaFintech271.428%54.866%4.6441.60873352001
18Yoco Technologies Pty Ltd.YocoSouth AfricaFintech267.350%54.298%13.9494.694149982013
19Al Karm for Solar EnergyKarmSolarEgyptEnergy244.662%51.053%2.8080.893105842011
20Copia KenyaCopia KenyaKenyaE-Commerce242.982%50.807%20.4146.0966271332013
21Comercio Partners Ltd.Comercio PartnersNigeriaFinancial Services232.372%49.236%3.5601.07130102016
22Northern Nigeria Flour Mills PlcNNFMNigeriaFood & Beverage202.882%44.685%24.1309.3595,0837,3051971
23Alpha Morgan Capital Managers Ltd.Alpha MorganNigeriaFinancial Services196.306%43.630%3.1291.05642122012
24WACOT Rice Ltd.WACOT RiceNigeriaAgricultural Commodities187.764%42.237%73.05629.8221591362014
25Field Intelligence, Inc.Field IncNigeriaHealth178.660%40.720%1.6940.6084472015
26Silverlands Tanzania Ltd.Silverlands TanzaniaTanzaniaAgricultural Commodities176.764%40.401%26.88011.2129386802013
27Tripple Gee & Co. PlcTripple GeeNigeriaSupport Services170.142%39.272%5.5842.428n.a.n.a.1980
28IHS Netherlands Holdco B.V.IHS NigeriaNigeriaTelecoms160.648%37.621%1,037.632398.0961,3331,3032001
29ZEN Petroleum Ltd.ZEN PetroleumGhanaEnergy159.634%37.442%418.843207.5267812572012
30Stor-Age Property REIT Ltd.Stor-Age Property REITSouth AfricaSupport Services157.988%37.151%48.60523.2913183662006
31Entelect Software Pty Ltd.EntelectSouth AfricaTechnology148.838%35.510%52.18525.9268394602007
32FoodCo Nigeria Ltd.FoodCoNigeriaRetail144.918%34.795%17.6648.4725913021982
33ASA International Kenya Ltd.ASA KenyaKenyaFinancial Services127.358%31.493%5.2462.3636243362012
34Global Accelerex Ltd.Global AccelerexNigeriaFintech120.969%30.249%16.7608.9103891632013
35Purple Group Ltd.Purple GroupSouth AfricaFinancial Services118.298%29.723%10.3005.40642241998
36Anglo American Platinum Ltd.Anglo American PlatinumSouth AfricaPrecious metals109.785%28.014%8,370.0614,932.45120,08028,6921917
37Sea Harvest Group Ltd.Sea HarvestSouth AfricaFood & Beverage105.313%27.098%265.753160.0194,200n.a.1964
38Naspers Ltd.NaspersSouth AfricaMedia98.793%25.738%5,934.0002,985.00028,44520,1961915
39Sygnia Ltd.SygniaSouth AfricaFinancial Services98.415%25.658%41.42224.372n.a.n.a.2003
40Alexandria Pharmaceuticals & Chemical IndustriesAlexandria PharmaceuticalsEgyptPharmaceuticals98.065%25.584%60.77945.4191,4381,5251991
41Leatt Corp.LeattSouth AfricaRetail91.681%24.220%38.60420.14087622001
42East African Business Company Ltd.East African Business CompanyKenyaAgricultural Commodities86.956%23.191%2.9971.6424082011
43The Training Room OnlineThe Training Room OnlineSouth AfricaEducation85.619%22.896%5.8733.164100452009
44Kwa Nokeng Oil SA Pty Ltd.Kwa Nokeng OilBotswanaEnergy84.682%22.689%87.15847.193219922016
45Prestige Assurance Co. PlcPrestige AssuranceNigeriaInsurance84.028%22.544%19.51212.45588781952
46Landtours Ghana Ltd.Landtours GhanaGhanaTravel & Leisure74.863%20.475%2.0151.48216221993
47Iser Pty. Ltd.Iser t/a Expert StoresSouth AfricaRetail73.538%20.170%6.3164.090124801999
48Opennetworks Pty Ltd.OpennetworksSouth AfricaTechnology71.933%19.799%6.1104.39331192000
49Julius Berger Nigeria PlcJulius BergerNigeriaConstruction70.398%19.441%673.090464.01212,2218,6251970
50hearX Group Pty Ltd.hearX GroupSouth AfricaTechnology70.133%19.379%1.5210.89457162016
51Afrimat Ltd.AfrimatSouth AfricaPrecious metals65.776%18.351%224.355167.3102,2892,3562006
52M-KOPA Holdings Ltd.M-KOPAKenyaFintech63.828%17.886%88.04853.7441,1028202011
53Frontieri Consult PlcFrontieriEthiopiaManagement Consulting62.935%17.671%1.8431.13149372008
54Osman Ahmed Osman & Co.The Arab ContractorsEgyptConstruction61.392%17.298%2,181.7571,351.83467,01366,6991955
55EFG Hermes Holding S.A.E.EFG HermesEgyptFinancial Services55.542%15.864%420.596296.4616,1613,3801984
56Genesis Food Nigeria Ltd.Genesis Food NigeriaNigeriaRestaurants54.077%15.499%24.38218.5891,7661,7971991
57Courteville Business Solutions PlcCourtevilleNigeriaTechnology50.813%14.677%4.7053.665125902005
58Harmony Gold Mining Co. Ltd.Harmony Gold MiningSouth AfricaPrecious metals50.020%14.476%1,892.6031,390.34448,11340,6861950
59RT Briscoe PlcBriscoeNigeriaAutomobiles48.005%13.961%18.03414.3131992231957
60Cognition Holdings Ltd.CognitionSouth AfricaTechnology46.032%13.453%14.00411.8552051471997
61Mutual Benefits Assurance PlcMutual BenefitsNigeriaInsurance45.498%13.314%54.08743.6673615531995
62United Capital PlcUnited CapitalNigeriaFinancial Services44.399%13.028%35.84029.15694832002
63Transaction Capital Ltd.Transaction CapitalSouth AfricaFinancial Services44.395%13.027%266.385215.3743,9654,0952012
64Microdata SAMicrodataMoroccoTechnology43.921%12.903%71.42148.581n.a.n.a.1991
65Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd.Impala Platinum HoldingsSouth AfricaPrecious metals43.339%12.751%3,121.5542,692.24456,1806,4451966
66LabelVie SALabelVieMoroccoRetail42.097%12.424%1,236.774852.055n.a.n.a.1985
67Impax Business Solutions Ltd.ImpaxKenyaTechnology41.527%12.274%2.0871.51063462003
68Gold Fields Ltd.Gold FieldsSouth AfricaPrecious metals40.926%12.115%3,892.1002,761.8002,2264,0121998
69Groupe Sipromad SAGroupe SipromadMadagascarPersonal & Household Goods38.541%11.478%194.894140.6762,7863982000
70Benso Oil Palm Plantation Ltd.BOPPGhanaFood & Beverage37.615%11.230%22.11620.6744595571978
71M.M. Group for Industry & International Trade SAEM.M. Group for Industry & International TradeEgyptSupport Services37.318%11.150%539.679430.88014,000n.a.1996
72G.B. Auto SAEGB CorpEgyptAutomobiles32.023%9.702%1,449.3031,203.53921,61210,7911956
73Zulu Lounge SA Pty Ltd.Zulu LoungeSouth AfricaPersonal & Household Goods29.749%9.069%6.5246.2161731722015
74Orca Energy Group, Inc.ORCATanzaniaEnergy28.014%8.580%77.87460.832111n.a.2004
75Hightech Payment Systems SAHightech Payment SystemsMoroccoSupport Services25.947%7.993%70.90255.1105404801995


Africa’s Fastest Growing Companies 2022 lists 75 companies, ordered by the highest compound annual growth (CAGR) in revenues between 2017 and 2020, based on the criteria outlined below.

The ranking was created through a complex procedure. Although the search was extensive, the list is not exhaustive as some companies did not want to make their figures public or did not participate for other reasons.

Statista identified thousands of companies in Africa as potential candidates for the ranking, through research in company databases and other public sources. These companies were invited to participate in the competition by post and email.

The project was also advertised online and in print, allowing all eligible companies to register online via Statista or the Financial Times between October 6, 2021 and February 15, 2022.

The process required submitted revenue figures to be certified by the chief executive, chief financial officer or an executive committee member of the company.

Following the application phase, Statista examined the officially stated revenue data of about 900 public companies in Africa. High-profile companies that met the criteria for inclusion were added to the list (27 in total). The data were collected through research using official sources, such as publicly available earning presentations, investor relations websites, or annual reports.

Criteria for inclusion

  • Revenue of at least US $100.000 generated in 2017. (1)

  • Revenue of at least US $1.5mn generated in 2020. (1)

  • An independent company (not a subsidiary or branch office of any kind).

  • A company with operational headquarters located in one of the African countries. (2)

  • Revenue growth between 2017 and 2020 that was primarily organic (ie “internally” stimulated).

  1. Countries that do not use the dollar to express revenues had to provide the average local currency value equivalent over the course of the relevant fiscal year.

  2. All countries on the African continent were eligible to participate.

Calculation of Compound Annual Growth Rates

The calculation of company growth rates is based on the revenue figures submitted by the companies in their respective national currencies. The revenue figures were then converted into US dollars for better comparability in the ranking. The average exchange rate for the financial year indicated by the company was used for this purpose.

The compound annual growth rate (CAGR) was calculated as follows:

((revenue 2020 / revenue 2017)^(1/3)) — 1 = CAGR

Evaluation and quality assurance

All data reported by the companies were processed and checked by Statista. Missing data entries (employee numbers, address data, etc) were researched in detail. Companies that did not fulfil the criteria for inclusion in the ranking were deleted.

The minimum CAGR required to be included in the ranking this year was 7.99 per cent.

Companies wishing to participate in next year’s ranking should email

This ranking has been amended to correct a data error

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