Data from professional services firm Deloitte finds that collectively, Africa’s top 50 consumer products companies generated revenues of US$30 billion in the 2015 financial year.
The inaugural African Powers of Consumer Products report, which examined the Top 50 Consumer Product (CP) companies on the continent, based on publicly available data from 15 African stock exchanges, found that South Africa, Egypt, Nigeria and Morocco account for 64% of the top companies.
The food sub-sector accounted for 64% of the top 50 followed by beverages at 28%.
As many as 23 companies in the top 50 are based in Southern Africa, 18 in North Africa, six in West Africa and three in East Africa.
The average revenues of of the top 50 companies on the list amounted to US$605 million, versus S$1.5 billion for the average top 10 company.
The largest company, Tiger Brands, heads up the list with a revenue of US$2.6 billion in the reported period which included the financial year ending May 2016.
Top 10 companies by revenue in US$
The South African companies in the Top 10 have a more widespread geographic footprint compared to their Nigerian counterparts, whose operations and investments are restricted to their domestic market.
On average, the South African companies have manufacturing facilities or other investments in four countries. Tiger Brands has the largest manufacturing and investment footprint, with a presence in six African (and two Latin American) countries, Deloitte said.
Top 10 fastest-growing by revenue in reporting currency
The consumer product industry in Africa experienced a challenging year in FY15. Only 14 out of the Top 50 CP companies recorded positive year-on-year revenue growth measured in US dollar terms, although 39 recorded positive growth in their local currency.
The relatively weak performance may be seen as the result of slowing economic growth and the depreciation of African currencies against the US dollar, from the second half of 2014, in economies such as Nigeria and South Africa.
Top three economies in the Top 50 list