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Finance apps grow 25% across Africa

A report by AppsFlyer and Google shows “super apps” installs led by Nigeria, South Africa, and Kenya.

Finance app installs have boomed across the African continent, as people turn to apps and technology as a way of managing finances, navigating economic uncertainty, and moving towards financial freedom.

A new report by AppsFlyer and Google analysed more than 140 million installs, across 3,000 finance apps, and found that installs across the continent grew 25%.

Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya  and South Africa were the main contributors to this rise in finance app installs, with the former largely bolstering this by a massive 200%; followed by Nigeria, which saw an increase of 33%. Kenya’s growth was coming in at 5%, while South Africa saw a decline by 11%.

Google search trends between May 2021 and May 2022 showed that lending and currency conversions dominated in terms of interest related to finance – an indication of how uncertain the economic situation has become for most people on the continent, particularly post-pandemic.

Key countries contributing to this increase include South Africa, who led the way in “grant status” and “loan application searches”, recording 700% and 51% increases in search intent respectively. They also led the way in “payment date” searches, with a 700% increase in search intent. There was also a large increase in South Africans searching for “currency conversions”, with a 74% increase in search intent for “euros to rands conversion rates”.

Nigeria topped the list in terms of “loan app” searches, with an increase in search intent of 68% in the country. In Kenya, the majority of people searched for “currency conversion”, with a 52% increase in search intent for “USD to KSH” searches.

According to the report, app install ad spend for finance represented approximately 87% of total spend across the continent between January 2021 and September 2022, confirming how dominant the finance industry is. This figure represents the amount of money invested in advertising campaigns aimed at driving users to app stores to download an app.

There was a 45% increase in finance app install ad spend across Africa on Android devices between H1 2021 and H2 2022. Marketers have been forced to up their budgets in order to run marketing campaigns to acquire new customers, as well as re-engage dormant users. As a result of this, installs from remarketing campaigns tailored to re-engage customers surged 55% between H1 2021 and H1 2022.

“The tech sector in Africa has experienced tremendous growth over the last few years, but one industry that stands out is the financial sector – and with smartphone penetration increasing, mobile is crucial for success,” said Otávio Tranchesi, industry lead finance at AppsFlyer. “We’re proud to be working alongside so many companies spearheading this growth.”

* To read the full report, click here.

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