A pioneering initiative, funded by the European Union, is approaching Africa's logistics industry. Launched in 2020, the ambitious DIGILOGIC project brings together innovation hubs and key logistics industry players in Europe and Africa. The aim is to promote and support emerging start-ups and innovative minds in the logistics sector. Now, as part of this pioneering work, the first Trend Radar has been developed, which maps current and future developments of the logistics industry in Africa.
Over the past decades, extensive research has been conducted in the logistics industry worldwide to shed light on current challenges and trends. However, the results cannot simply be transferred to the African continent. For this reason, a tailor-made logistics trend radar was developed specifically for Africa within the DIGILOGIC project.
The identification of the key trends was largely based on interviews with respected experts from the logistics sector in Africa. In these in-depth discussions experts described not only current developments but also specific challenges facing the industry on the African continent compared to Europe.
In addition, valuable insights from literature, the DIGILOGIC Company Workshops and the participating start-ups of the DIGILOGIC Mentoring Programme were incorporated into the creation of the Trend Radar. The result is a tool that identifies the crucial trends that will shape the logistics industry over the next ten years:
The logistics industry in Africa stands at the cusp of an unprecedented transformation, driven by a convergence of societal, technological, and biological trends. As we venture into the next decade, the landscape of logistics in the continent will witness profound changes, reshaping supply chains, redefining business models, and revolutionizing the way goods and services are transported and distributed. In following this path, it is interesting to note that the implementation of new digital technologies is not a top priority for logistics in Africa. Rather, new and old digital and physical technologies are being combined to obtain the best outcomes possible within the contexts for logistics in Africa. This is also reflected for example in the high ability of African start-ups to cope with existing challenges such as the provision of minimal infrastructure, climatic challenges as well as societal fragmentation across Africa. Accordingly, societal issues that hinder logistics in Africa need to be addressed by the respective trends so that logistics can be carried out in challenging contexts. To represent occurring trends related to the prevalent environmental and climatic challenges, the DIGILOGIC Trend Radar includes a third dimension: biological trends. In a world where uncertainties are introduced into global logistics unpredictably by extreme weather events and social conflicts, valuable insights for the future of European logistics could be gained from ongoing analyses of emerging logistics solutions in Africa.
With the first Logistics Trend Radar for Africa, DIGILOGIC will undoubtedly make a decisive contribution to promoting the logistics industry on the African continent. This innovative tool will help companies and investors make informed decisions and identify potential in good time. The future of logistics in Africa is on the move, and with this radar, the stage is set for a promising development.
The published report as well as short insights from the interviews are available via the following: