Program Details

Best practices for digital transformations and infrastructure modernization

Using real-time insights to understand the digital life of telco subscribers

Sponsors and Partners:


This program explores innovations and advances in the mobile connected economy across Africa, including digital transformation successes, operational improvements and infrastructure modernization priorities. Mobile wireless network operators (MNOs) have a big opportunity to unearth device user insights and deliver much-needed applications and services that can advance socio-economic value in a vast population of one billion consumers in the region. For many telcos with effective customer data utilization strategies, the ability to offer affordable, revenue-producing content, commerce, community, collaboration, education, payments, health, safety, public service, and entertainment offerings will fend off category disruptors and competitive threats from over-the-top services.


According to the GSMA, the mobile ecosystem is contributing significantly to economic and social development in Sub-Saharan Africa. There are over 450 million mobile subscribers in the region and some 750 SIM connections. This is expected to rise to 634 million subscribers by 2025 and over one billion SIM connections, driven by the advent of cellular IoT. Mobile broadband connectivity is presently around 40 percent, but expected to reach 87 percent by 2025 when there will be some 690 million smartphones in use in the region. 

Regional telcos have the ability to leverage a wealth of mobile consumer data to deliver relevant and needed services. Since African population groups are some of the heaviest mobile users in the world, mobile subscriber data can be the source of actionable intelligence on best ways to acquire, retain and monetize subscribers.  

To better understand the diverse and complex African market landscape, the CMO Council surveyed marketing and business leaders at communication service providers, mobile network operators and digital media companies in the region. It also conducted in-depth interviews with executives from MTN, TelkomSA, Vodafone, Cell C, Accenture and AT Kearney.  Through this engagement, the CMO Council has produced a report on ways to increase customer-centricity, responsive omni-channel engagement, and more valued, revenue-producing services using live data and analytics. 

Research: Survey & Reports


Curated Facts & Stats

The increasing prevalence of AI-generated information is likely to drive a significant change in how consumers seek out information. Traditional search engines like Google may see a decline in user traffic as consumers pivot more and more toward embracing AI tools such as ChatGPT to answer their questions. This shift signifies a growing trust in artificial intelligence to curate and deliver relevant content.

Source: WSI World

Global advertising spend is forecast to grow 4.4% globally this year, and by 2024, is forecast to surpass $1 trillion advertising spend.

Source: Marketing Week

About 20 to 22 million people in South Africa use a smartphone, which accounts for about one third of the country's population.


Across West Africa, there is an 86 percent SIM connection penetration rate and a 26 percent mobile internet penetation rate.


South Africa ranks as 143 out of 230 countries for the cheapest data prices.


Women in low and middle income countries are 10 percent less likely than men to own a mobile phone and are 23 percent less likely than men to use mobile internet services. Sub-Saharan Africa is one of the most affected regions globally with women being 15 percent less likely to own mobile phones respectfully.


Different African countries experience different mobile network experiences. For example, South African, Moroccan, and Senegalese smartphone users connect to 4G signals 72 percent to 75 percent of the time; however, actual download speeds varied from 4.4 Mbps in Senegal to 14.4 Mbps in South Africa.



Curated Reading