Features
24 Jan 24

Africa’s shared mobility industry to double by 2030

Shared mobility is growing everywhere, but nowhere as fast as in Africa. Between now and 2030, African jobs in the sector will grow by 113%, to 1.1 million; and turnover in Africa will increase by 85%, to $7.8 billion. So says a new report called Shared Mobility’s Global Impact.

Shared mobility – a sector that includes such diverse services as ride-hailing, e-bike rentals, and car-sharing – is becoming an increasingly important part of the mobility mix, and indeed of the economy as a whole, global management firm Oliver Wyman reveals in its latest report. 

The industry’s growth is driven by two continent-wide phenomena: rising middle classes, and rapid urbanization. Of particular interest is ride-hailing, which creates significant earning prospects (up to 130% more than jobs of a similar level, in both Nigeria and South Africa, for instance).

The reason ride-hailing, and by extension shared mobility as a whole, is growing, is the massive demand: it helps bridge the many gaps in the infrastructure and accessibility of mobility that exist and persist in Africa. 

Some other salient facts from the report:

  • Between now and 2030, the African shared-mobility market will grow at an average of 9% per year, higher than any other region. While the market will still be relatively small in 2030, Africa is home to much of its future potential, largely because it has the largest urbanizing population in the world. 
  • Another factor favouring the growth of shared mobility in Africa: the continent’s relatively low access to public transport. Worldwide, slightly less than 50% of the population have convenient access to public transport. In the U.S. and Europe, the figure is about 75%, in Africa just 33%. 
  • Ride-hailing is more likely to earn drivers a living in a reliable and predictable way in lower-income countries like Nigeria (71%) and South Africa (75%) than in a high-income one like the Netherlands (57%).
  • Shared mobility has the potential to remove cars from traffic. This is relevant even for Africa, where car ownership rates are much lower (about 100 per 1,000 inhabitants). Big cities still suffer from major congestion issues. In Johannesburg, a driver loses 61 hours per year in traffic jams. In Lagos, it’s 30 hours – per week. 
  • Private and corporate electrification is proceeding at a slow pace across Africa. Shared mobility services, often using small electrified vehicles, could be a good way to broaden the share of EVs across the continent. 

Image: Gabin Degan, CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED

Authored by: Frank Jacobs