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E-commerce Growth: Mobile Apps Records 55% Increase On Retail Spending

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AppsFlyer, the marketing measurement and experience platform, today released the 2021 edition of its State of eCommerce App Marketing report, outlining key global trends to guide marketers in building a mobile-first experience that will drive engagement and sales for the upcoming holiday season. Having analysed over 750 million app installs across 7250 apps, and 3 billion remarketing conversions across EMEA, the report found that the African mobile app market continues to show strong growth with more people accessing goods and services online than ever before.

This year, retail apps are already approaching peak usage levels from the 2020 holiday season, so the eCommerce industry is entering the last quarter of 2021 with an elevated baseline. With eCommerce installs increasing 55% on Android and 32% on iOS in 2021, and consumer spend climbing 55% overall, the Q4 holiday season is expected to be record-breaking.

“With the holiday shopping season around the corner, retail brands should be prioritising mobile, and mobile apps, as part of their strategy,” said Daniel Junowicz, RVP EMEA & Strategic Projects, at AppsFlyer, AppsFlyer. “Marketers should look at optimising the overall user experience, including the transition from mobile web to app. In addition, deep linking can be used to ensure customers reach their intended destination within a mobile app smoothly and contextually. If last year is anything to go by, marketers that get their mobile app strategy right will see significant revenue and acquisition growth.”

Key Africa Insights:

  • ecommerce installs remained steady throughout 2020 but have already risen by 16% in 2021 (Q1 vs Q2)
  • iOS is showing particularly strong growth, with a 33% increase in the same time frame. By comparison, retail app installs on Android haven’t changed.
  • Non-organic installs dropped 26% at the start of the pandemic: Marketers throughout the region were cautious when it came to spending budget at the start of the pandemic. Non-organic installs dropped by 26% between Q1 2020 (pre-pandemic) and Q2 2020 (as the pandemic hit). However, this level of cautiousness was short-lived, with non-organic installs rising by 18% in Q3. They’ve remained steady ever since.
  • Remarketing: The 2020 holiday season saw heavy usage of remarketing as marketers looked to capitalise on key shopping periods. Between Q3 and Q4 2020 there was a 22% lift in remarketing conversion rates. This reached nearly 40% when comparing October to November.
  • In many iOS dominant regions, remarketing took a hit following the loss of IDFA as part of Apple’s update to iOS 14, but given Android’s dominance in Sub-Saharan Africa this hasn’t been felt. 
  • In-app purchases increase 55% over 2020: Consumer spend fell by 50% at the start of the pandemic – between March and April – likely due to economic uncertainty as a result of lockdowns. However, as it became clear that consumers would need to adapt to digital methods of shopping in the absence of physical stores, spending quickly recovered. Indeed, between April and May 2020 there was a 256% rise in overall spending in retail apps! Overall there was a 55% increase in consumer spending in apps in 2020.
  • Unsurprisingly, spending in 2020 peaked in November, coinciding with Black Friday and the lead-up to Christmas. As a result, between Q3 and Q4 there was a 60% uplift. This increase in spend has carried through to 2021. If we compare H1 2020 with H1 2021 we see a 65% increase in spending. 
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Transport

Peter Obi Inspired Me To Start Producing SUVs And Pick-ups – Innoson

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The Chairman of Innoson Group, Dr. Innocent Chuwuma, has explained how the former Governor of Anambra state, Peter Obi gave his company tremendous encouragement that helped boost its activities.

The industrialist said that apart from making the access road to Innoson plant very motorable, Obi placed repeated orders for hundreds of mini buses, pick-up trucks and SUVs.

He disclosed, however, that the former governor is a hard bargainer who would always insist on the lowest possible unit price, even though he would pay promptly for every order placed.

“Peter Obi gave me much encouragement when I started. He first ordered 700 units of buses for schools in Anambra State, for which he made upfront payment. This upfront payment helped me a lot because I was just getting started.

“Later on, he ordered for another 500 units of pick-ups for security agencies in the state. But the only snag in dealing with him is that he would beat the price down to the lowest point. However, the good thing about him is that he will never owe you. He gave me a lot of encouragement. He also came back to me to say that he needed 500 SUVs for all the traditional rulers in Anambra state.

“Then, I had not started producing SUVs. I asked him to give me 14 days to study his need. I called all my engineers together and we discussed how to produce his order. Peter Obi made me to start producing SUVs and pick-ups, and we have no regrets doing so.”

Obi himself had some years ago disclosed on television that some people in his government had tried to dissuade him from purchasing the Innoson vehicles, alleging that they were death-traps.

“But, I insisted on the state buying from Innoson; I told them, ‘let the vehicles go ahead and kill us. The rest of us that survive will continue to use them,’” the former governor stated, confirming that the vehicles performed satisfactorily.

The result of meeting the mass purchases was that the auto maker gradually added more products to the IVM line-up, including shuttle buses, bigger buses for mass transit, various pick-up truck models {some made for the security agencies}, sedans, SUVs, ambulances, family vans, and refuse management vehicles.

The addition of many products also led to the commissioning of two new plants in July 2021 and installation of an automated robotic paint spray booth, which was integrated into the production processes to increase efficiency and quality in the IVM factory complex.

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Energy

Arnergy Launches Diaspora Initiative For Clean Energy Remittances

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Arnergy, Nigeria’s leading distributed utility company delivering solar energy solutions, has today announced the launch of the Diaspora Initiative – a groundbreaking scheme enabling the global Nigerian diaspora to invest in solar energy solutions on behalf of local individuals and businesses.

The first of its kind from an African solar company, the Diaspora Initiative enables Nigerians abroad to purchase off-grid solar panels and storage systems which are installed in households and businesses across Nigeria to deliver a clean and uninterrupted source of electricity.

With Arnergy’s tech-enabled solar models marking a major innovation as a sustainable solution to Nigeria’s $29bn per-year energy reliability crisis, outright purchases as well as lease-to-own options are now available through Arnergy’s partnership with Flutterwave, pioneering a new form of remittances that will significantly address critical energy needs for millions.

As part of the new service, Nigerian diasporans can purchase the full range of Arnergy’s distributed utility models, which are powered by lithium-ion based batteries – a sustainable alternative to fossil fuel generators, establishing a more reliable electricity supply through storage solutions and an average 10-year lifespan.

With the company’s proprietary remote monitoring technology, SolarBase, Arnergy’s customers are also able to monitor and adjust their energy consumption in real-time through the convenience of a mobile (Android & iOS) or web app, establishing a major breakthrough for individuals and businesses seeking greater control over their household and OPEX costs respectively.

Speaking on the launch of the Diaspora Initiative, Femi Adeyemo, CEO and Founder at Arnergy, says “For decades, the huge lack of consistent and affordable energy has held millions of Nigerians back from achieving the best possible economic outcomes, but today, we’re empowering diaspora across the globe to drive us closer to a future where energy across the country is 100% renewable, reliable and accessible.”

“Now more than ever, we need a direct and sustainable approach to tackling what has consistently been one of Nigeria’s most critical challenges not only for the benefit of local Nigerians, but also the health of our planet.

At Arnergy, we firmly believe the answer lies in solar energy and during a time where Nigerians at home are facing a difficult economic period, we’re proud to be the first solar company in Africa forging a new path for the diaspora to invest in more accessible solutions for friends and family.”

Founded in 2013, Arnergy delivers reliable and sustainable energy services for small, medium and large businesses and residents across Nigeria. Leveraging its local engineering and customer support teams, it is the only African solar company with fully proprietary IoT, power electronics and software architecture that allows remote control of solar assets for retail and commercial users.

The platform boasts a leading portfolio of multinational clients including Heineken, KPMG, Shell, Citibank, 54Gene, Ardova and the Dangote Group and to-date, Arnergy has delivered 3MW+ of installed capacity and 9MWh+ of storage capacity across Nigeria.

In 2019, Arnergy also became the first African distributed energy company to be backed by Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos following its $9mn Series A round led by Breakthrough Energy Ventures with participation from the Norwegian Investment Fund for Developing Countries (Norfund), ElectriFI (EDFI Management Company) and All On.

The launch of Arnergy’s Diaspora Initiative coincides with the recent pledge from President Buhari at the COP26 Summit that Nigeria will reach net zero emissions by 2026.

However, the prevalence of diesel fuel generators, which produce an estimated 29mn tonnes worth of CO2 emissions each year, pose a major stumbling block to the new target, leading to a significantly increased level of interest in cleaner and reliable alternatives such as lithium-ion based solutions.

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GRBusiness

World Bank Slams CBN FX Policies, Says It Hampers Foreign Investments

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The World Bank has slammed the Central Bank of Nigeria’s exchange policy on foreign exchange management as it continue to discourage investment and fuel inflation.

This was disclosed by the World Bank  in the November 2021 edition of its Nigeria Development Update tagged “Time for Business Unusual”.

The World Bank said the whole of Nigeria’s debt burden remains manageable for the time being, maintaining sustainable debt dynamics will require curbing the use of CBN financing for the deficit and addressing fiscal pressures to break the cycle of low growth and rising public debt.

The primary macroeconomic challenges disturbing growth, according to the World Bank, are issues around the predictability and credibility of exchange-rate management, as well as an insufficient supply of foreign exchange (FX).

The report stated, “The government’s exchange rate management policies continue to discourage investment and fuel inflation. Exchange rate stability is a key CBN policy objective, and to preserve its external reserves the CBN continues to manage FX demand and limit the supply of FX to the market.” 

The World Bank stated that the Nigerian central bank’s exchange rate cannot handle external shocks to the economy, as exchange-rate management emerges as one of the key drivers of inflation.

“Pressure on the naira (₦) remains intense,  while the CBN has raised the nominal official exchange rate three times since the start of the pandemic (by 15% in March 2020, 5 per cent in August 2020, and 7% in May 2021), FX management remains too rigid to respond to external shocks. Meanwhile, exchange-rate management has emerged as one of the key drivers of inflation,” the World Bank added .

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