Ecosystem Deep Dive #23: Ghana - Quiet but coming up
Ghana's start-up ecosystem is often hidden behind Africa's "Big Four". However, Kwame Nkrumah's country has attributes others on the continent don't.
An African cornerstone
While not the largest African country by size nor by population, Ghana is a country of symbols. Ghana was home to the powerful Ashanti Empire, and was the first sub-Saharan African country to gain independence from colonial rule in 1957 under the leadership of pan-African icon Kwame Nkrumah. While Ghana’s 2020 presidential election included some controversy, the country is often cited as being one of Africa’s best functioning and stable democracies, alongside the likes of Botswana and Cape Verde.
In economic terms, the country has a relatively diversified economy, and is known for its strong gold and cocoa resources. Demographically, the country is young and boasts a 79% adult literacy rate. Internet penetration stands at 46.5%.
“With a population of about 31 million people growing at 2.2% annually, Ghana is currently the 13th most populous African country. Approximately 57 % of its population is under the age of 25, a sign that Ghana and other African countries will supply a disproportionate percentage of the world’s working-age people in the coming years.” - Tech Cabal
Ghana’s start-up ecosystem is often hidden behind the massive media hype surrounding Africa’s “big four”, namely Egypt, Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa. Ghana’s funding numbers definitely fall short of the big four, but that isn’t to say the Ghanaian ecosystem doesn’t deserve attention.