5 African Trends for 2017


With 2016 representing a year of social polarity, political extremism and further divisions, isolation has never felt so at home in the minds of the masses and the marginalized. However, across the Middle East and Africa, 2017 will mark the year that a host of progressive brands and crowd-powered activist initiatives stand up for the repressed and the excluded.

New trends are taking over the African continent, here is a roundup of all the new trends to look out for in 2017 following 2016 patterns. // Source: trendwatching

Trend 1: Rise of the underdogs – Many new innovations and initiatives showcased a new trend in projecting the voice of minorities, from a first of its kind Albino Pageantry in Kenya, to the launch of South Africa’s LGBT online streaming channel down to UN refugee team competing at the Olympics and to an all Muslim female Cycling Campaign, minorities found their voice in 2017.

Winners of the 2017 Albino Pageantry, Kenya // Source: Daily Mail UK

Winners of the 2017 Albino Pageantry, Kenya // Source: Daily Mail UK

Trend 2: Haute Health – In 2017 brands will pay more attention to physical and mental health being of their consumers, following 2016 trends we saw a LagosVegFest themed “green living and Yoga” promoting healthy eating and living healthy. October 2016 saw the birth of a government funded internet rehab program in Algeria treating patients with effects of internet addiction and a heart care campaign across middle east and North Africa turning heartbeats into personalized music. What an amazing to live in

Trend 3: Fintechphilia – 2016 was more or less the year of fintech in Africa. On a macro-economic scale, Financial Technology (FinTech) is set to be one of the biggest game-changers in 2017, as investors patiently await the killer FinTech product that, like M-Pesa, will disrupt, not only Africa, but also the world-at-large. 2016 saw the birth of Flutterwave, an online payment platform allowing customers  process secure payments and access banking services in Africa. June 2016 saw the birth of Amplify , a Nigerian payment platform focusing entirely on subscription payments and July 2016 saw the innovative move by standard chartered bank in the birth of Video banking services available online to their customers.

FinTech Illustration // Source: ethicolive.com

FinTech Illustration // Source: ethicolive.com

Trend 4: Capacity Capture - In 2017, savvy brands will address some of Africa’s most fundamental issues by maximizing the purpose(s) of their offerings, and minimizing wasted resources. These brands will focus on CAPACITY CAPTURE by creatively unlocking new sources of value from what would otherwise be an underused (or dormant) product and service element. April 2016 saw the launch of Walty in Nigeria and Sudan, a solar-powered machine aiming to provide electricity, clean water, and internet services across rural Africa. November 2016 saw Uber in Johannesburg provide aid to residents in Alexandra who were affected by flash floods. UberCOMMUNITY allowed users to request a car that would collect and deliver items such as toiletries, babycare products, feminine hygiene products and non-perishable food items to over 130 people left homeless by the disaster. May 2016 saw Montana Lisboa launch a campaign aiming to help prevent the spread of malaria in Angola and November 2016 saw hotels.ng, a Nigerian travel entailer throw open their office space for organizations and individuals holding free tech/digital training events or seminars in Lagos, Nigeria with free internet and electricity

Trend 5: Leapfrog social - With less time (and resources) to get things wrong, Africans in 2017 will be reveling in their own innovation-shortcuts that leapfrog the global status-quo regarding P2P, social media and other interactive platforms. In 2017, regional innovators will turn their attention to social media solutions that leapfrog the West's in order to 'fit' the needs of the local market. These social advancements will focus on embedding African cultural norms into services and platforms . May 2016 saw the introduction of a new wifi network on the Congolese island of Idjwi. The mesh wifi network is beamed across the lake by a powerful antenna, with the signal being transmitted by masts. November 2016 saw the launch of new social media by a prolific Nigeria-based blogger and entrepreneur launched Linda Ikeji. The social network that combines new reports, social interactions and online shopping, and pays users with over 50,000 follower. In Zambia, InstaVoice Celeb is a new service giving subscribers access to audio updates from their favorite celebrities. Launched by Zambian Telecommunications Company Zamtel was launched allowing users follow their favourite celebrities, actors, musicians and fashion designers and also receive periodic voice updates. May 2016 saw the birth of NetFlorist  in South Africa, campaign filming people’s reactions to flower deliveries. October 2016 saw the birth of Nigeria-based Balogun Market app allowing users to buy products and services via chat.

Read full story HERE // Source: Trendwatching