Sodiq Tijani, a young entrepreneur and product expert, is leading the charge in creating a more sustainable and inclusive retail industry in Africa.
He has developed a cloud-based retail management system as the lead product manager and country manager for One of Asias’s Biggest Fintech Youcloudpay.
Sodiq’s product Youshop is helping small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to overcome the daily operational and payment challenges they face, while also promoting sustainability and inclusivity. In this article, we will explore the importance of SMEs to the growth of economies, particularly in Africa, and the challenges they face.
SMEs play a crucial role in the economic growth and development of many countries, particularly in developing regions like Africa.
According to the International Finance Corporation (IFC), SMEs contribute to over 45% of employment and over 33% of GDP in developing countries. In Africa, SMEs are the backbone of the economy, contributing significantly to job creation, poverty reduction, and economic growth.
However, despite their importance, SMEs in Africa face several challenges that limit their growth and competitiveness.
One of the main challenges facing SMEs in Africa is access to finance. According to the World Bank, only 20% of SMEs in sub-Saharan Africa have access to formal credit, compared to over 70% in high-income countries.
This limited access to finance makes it difficult for SMEs to invest in technology, expand their operations, and innovate. In addition, SMEs in Africa often lack the collateral and credit history required to access formal credit, making it challenging to secure financing from banks and other financial institutions.
Another challenge facing SMEs in Africa is the lack of infrastructure, particularly in rural areas. Many SMEs in Africa operate in remote areas with limited access to roads, electricity, and water.
This lack of infrastructure makes it difficult for SMEs to transport goods, access markets, and compete with larger businesses.
In addition, the cost of infrastructure development can be prohibitively expensive for many SMEs, making it challenging to invest in the necessary infrastructure to grow their businesses.
SMEs in Africa also face challenges related to technology adoption and innovation. Many SMEs in Africa operate using traditional methods, which limit their efficiency, productivity, and competitiveness. The lack of access to technology, training, and education can make it challenging for SMEs to adopt new technologies and innovate, further limiting their growth potential.
Sodiq Tijani ‘s company addresses many of the challenges facing SMEs in Africa.
By providing a platform for sustainable and inclusive practices, Tijani’s solution helps SMEs to operate more efficiently, save money, and increase their profitability.
Additionally, the financial management features of the system can help businesses build credit, making it easier for them to access financing and grow their operations.
Tijani’s vision for the future is to continue driving innovation and technology adoption in Africa’s retail industry, creating a more sustainable and inclusive marketplace for businesses of all sizes.
In conclusion, SMEs are critical to the economic growth and development of many countries, particularly in Africa.
However, SMEs in Africa face several challenges that limit their growth and competitiveness, including limited access to finance, lack of infrastructure, and challenges related to technology adoption and innovation.
Youcloud’s cloud-based retail management system is helping to address many of these challenges by providing SMEs with a platform for sustainable and inclusive practices.
Through his vision and leadership, Sodiq Tijani is creating new opportunities for entrepreneurs and driving economic growth and prosperity across the continent starting from Nigeria.