Africa’s elite 'leapfrogging technology'
19 July 2012
The proportion of middle class affluent individuals in Africa earning €80,000+ ($98,000) has risen from 5.9% in 2010 to 7.6% in 2012, according to EMS Africa 2012.
Seventy-two percent of respondents to the survey had at least a single degree, including 38% with a second degree or masters, and 94% of respondents could understand enough English to read a newspaper or watch television.
In terms of media, Africa’s elite are spending more time consuming media than their European counterparts, but below that of the Middle East’s elite. The proportion of heavy readers amongst tablet owners (54%) is above the average of 49%.
International media has a penetration of 3,297,000 in Africa, and 887,000 among the regions ‘influential opinion leaders’. International print has an average issue readership (AIR) of 42% among Africa’s elite and 60% among influential opinion leaders. In-flights had an AIR of 24% and 38% for influential opinion leaders.
International TV has a weekly reach of 90% among the African elite, with news and business print gaining a weekly reach of 80%. International websites had a weekly reach of 31%.
CNN led the way in terms of monthly reach – TV, online or mobile combined – at 70.3%, followed by BBC World News (55.4%), Al Jazeera (46.7%), Sky News (43.4%), Bloomberg (32.8%), Euronews (31.1%) and CNBC (20.0%).
The adoption of internet-based personal communication devices has been extensive in Africa, particularly when compared to penetration in Europe. Fifty-nine percent of the African elite own a mobile phone, with Blackberry being the top device at 65%, almost double the penetration of the iPhone (33%). Tablets have reached 36% penetration in Africa, three times higher than in Europe.
Luxury goods are a must-have among the African elite, with 48% purchasing a fragrance costing more than €75 ($92) in the last 12 months, versus just 27% in Europe. Thirty percent bought a holiday costing more than €1,500 ($1,835), 18% a designer suit or dress worth more than €1,000 ($1,223), 17% shoes over €500 ($610), 12% spent more than €1,500 ($1,835) on jewellery in the last 12 months and 11% bought a handbag or briefcase worth more than €500 ($610).
Soccer was the favourite sport in the region, with 60% showing an interest. Athletics, rugby and golf were also popular, while 9% showed an active interest in snow skiing, less popular than in Europe.
“The economic growth in Africa is set to increase over the next decade, the population is younger and more affluent, they are leapfrogging technology and have enormous untapped resources and a fast growing financial sector,” says EMS director Nathalie Sodeike. “Africa is increasing on the world economic stage and EMS is designed to help advertisers communicate more effectively with these important consumers.”
EMS Africa 2012 is a regional media and marketing survey which measures the habits of the top 15% of income earners in the region.
Jenni Baker, London