Africa is a continent with over 1 billion people. Africa is not homogenous but it represents significant regional, social and economic differences. Poor record keeping in the past has resulted in inaccurate estimates of people, money, fertility, mortality, education, etc. However, as Africans become important players through mineral and mining resources, this emerging market will make faster than ever strides towards change. It is has the largest penetration of mobile phones, the fastest growing middle class, and the west is no longer a template for Africa.

Africa’s future is quite inspiring as the people decide that the end of dictatorship will lead to new models of governance. Expect an African Spring! The new band of leadership may be younger, but the exuberance of youth may result in elements of folly tied together with charm, eventually giving way to a reality that leadership is leading by example.

At Market Decisions we would like to shed some light on this “dark continent” and are working on a new African Database. The Africa Profile Database is a platform from which to view credible information on Africa. The information covers a broad range of sound data from economic and business to cultural aspects of each of the 58 countries, connecting content from periodicals, internet, reports, research, maps, and news to a logical and easy to use format.

AFRICA - Challenges and Opportunities
When we first decided to take the entire continent of Africa and conceptualise a GIS system we were prepared for the fact that since independence from France, England, Germany, Belgium, Portugal and any other world power which controlled the continent for many years, we needed to create a new version of the Story of the Continent, post-Independence, particularly with the impact of development currently funded by international players, most notably China.  Africa is a continent we are talking about, not a country.
There is a lot of information on Africa, and there are new “Applications” being developed each day.  As a company that believes in turning information into strategy, we decided to gather data from as many sources as possible as well as check, verify and inform users of this information. As a result, we ended up with over 30 databases on all 58 countries.

The following are not independent states:

  • Mayotte, Overseas Department of France
  • Réunion, Overseas Department of France
  • Saint Helena, Overseas British Territory
  • Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic managed by Morocco

The data then needed to be connected to a geographical system. ADC WorldMap is a detailed digital atlas offering seamless geographic data for the whole Earth. We used the maps for Africa. Along with providing the most current country and first level political boundaries for the entire world, ADC WorldMap Digital Atlas v7.3 includes second level administrative boundaries for each country. The areas we used are:

  • Polygons: Countries, Administrative Areas, Seas, Protected areas, Lakes
  • Lines:  Contour lines, Major Routes, Railroads, Water Lines, Coastlines
  • Points: Cities, Airports, Mountains, Parks, Railroad Stations

The ADC WorldMap was then linked to the Africa data databases created for each country, according to the following categories:

There are of course many more databases, but these will be added over time.  The base level information is:

  • Political
  • Economy
  • Demography
  • Business


A graphic display of our continent is shown in the pages to follow:

Political Analysis 2015 Land Use Economic Regions 2015 (United Nations).

Economic Regions 2015 (The Africa Report).

Population by Province 2015

Major Cities 2015

Ease of Doing Business 2015

Transparency International 2015

Economic Data 2015

Top 500 Companies 2015

Airports Africa 2016

WTTC Tourism Indicator 2015

Africa Profiler: Turning African Information into Strategy

Africa as a continent has been recognized as an area for major growth and expansion by both trade and industry local and international players. Until recently there has been no single, comprehensive source of information for the developing African continent.
Market Decisions has collaborated with ST Group to present Africa Profiler. Over the course of the last 4 years, Market Decisions has mined the various

information sources, providing a comprehensive solution for companies doing business with and in the African continent.

Africa Profiler is a comprehensive, spatially enabled database that provides organizations with an in-depth view of African countries. Africa Profiler provides insightful information that enables business-making decisions about expansion into Africa possible.

We have recently added layers such as Province, because this is a requirement by the retail industry. This gathering of data and research has many benefits to the purchaser of Africa Profiler:
• Understand the density of activity within a catchment area
• Gain a competitive advantage using up-to-date data
• Integrate with Location Intelligence software tools
• Gain insight into possible trade areas
• Identify expansion opportunities
• Increase planning effectiveness

AfricaProfiler Aps Include:
• Africa Country File
• Africa Country Capital 2015
• Africa Admin Areas 2015
• Africa Population Comparison 2015
• Political Analysis 2015
• Macro Data 2015
• Economic Data 2015
• Population UN_Urbanisation_2015
• Population by Province 2015
• Development Indicators 2015
• Media Press 2015
• Media TV 2015
• Media Radio 2015
• Media News Agency 2015
• Mo Ibrahim Index 2015
• Ease of Doing Business 2015
• Transparency International 2015
• Top 200 Banks African Business 2015
• Top 500 Companies 2015
• WTTC Tourism Indicator 2015
• World Tourism Rank 2015
• Major Cities 2015
• Africa Shopping Centres 2015

Our reliable sources are recognised around the world and are also constantly tracking and updating their information. We in turn are also updating our own information on the App. Plans are in place for the gathering of information to come in the future Africa Profiler App editions:
• Universities in Africa
• Retailers in Africa
• Health (HIV)
• Arts in Africa
• Insurance
• Finance