Blog post

Spotlight on voice in emerging markets

04/11/24
Chris Adams


When Mark Zuckerberg said that the future of the telco and mobile market would be built in Africa, he certainly wasn’t wrong.

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After a recent trip to Africa, I was struck once again by how the continent’s young population embrace both technology and entrepreneurialism.

When Mark Zuckerberg said that the future of the telco and mobile market would be built in Africa, he certainly wasn’t wrong.

According to the GSMA, by 2025 there will be 615m mobile subscribers in Africa – that’s 50% of the entire continent’s population. This phenomenal growth has been driven by mobile money services, global cloud providers and a youthful, dynamic population eager to play a bigger role in the global economy.

According to the same report, operator revenues in Africa will be close to $56bn by that time, up from $44bn in 2020. That’s a huge growth opportunity for digital, voice and messaging services.

Such growth isn’t confined to Africa either. It’s mirrored across other emerging markets, such as the Middle East, the Indian subcontinent, and LATAM. This is caused in part by continued globalisation, but also by the regulatory expansion that’s slowing growth in more mature telecoms and mobile markets.

As such, the global cloud providers – like AWS, Microsoft and Meta – are bringing their UC and productivity solutions to emerging markets as a priority. That means more voice minutes, new business, investment and ultimately economic growth. This is all great news for voice services.

Meanwhile, the CCaaS (Contact Centre as a Service) facilities that are needed to support these services are also growing rapidly. In countries such as South Africa, Pakistan and the UAE, cloud services have made it easier to do business and new infrastructure is needed to underpin them.

These exciting developments will lead to a less complex, more open and more scalable voice market globally. This is exactly why Wavecrest exists: to build a new relationship between the telecoms operators and cloud communications providers.

Our perspective is based on years of engagement in many of these emerging markets. We’ve spent significant time developing our own relationships and building partnerships with local operators, often in more difficult-to-reach markets. Our capabilities and collaborations in some of these countries are unique in the industry.

It puts us in a unique position to unlock the potential of this burgeoning market.

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