For a good part of the last decade, any mention of Ethiopia has been synonymous with impressive growth stories. Still, Ethiopia’s economic outlook continues to be that of sustainable growth as it enters the last bit of the so called Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP).
As the growth story so far, and a good portion of Ethiopia’s approximately 70 B USD GDP has been driven by government investment activities; the country may eventually introduce attractive incentives for private sector participation in addition to a potential relaxation of protected sectors to encourage FDI.
When that happens, one area that will see significant growth will be the contribution of ICTs to the overall economy, chief among these will be the proliferation of digital services as evidenced by the sprouting of such services along most verticals proven to have succeeded when introduced in other markets.
Ethiopia still very much lags behind its neighbors in digital services, but this is not going to last very long if the sole mobile operator’s investment pattern in data networks is any indication.
To the surprise of many, Ethio Telecom is now the second largest operator in Africa next only to MTN. With 52 million mobile subscribers, 14 million mobile internet users, and the increasing quality of services from Ethio Telecom’s 3G and 4G infrastructure, the Ethiopian market is becoming increasingly attractive for online services.
With the shifting behavior of Ethiopians in information consumption via the internet, the digital channel will prove to be a very lucrative proposition.
The limited and pricy traditional media that is available to advertisers gives the digital channel the added attractiveness to its already obvious upside potential in the almost greenfield.
In anticipation of this opportunity, serious players are making their presence known in Ethiopia’s future online service industry.
Jobs.et is the new addition to the few players in the field. Judging from the timing to focus on the jobs vertical and the team behind it, it is poised to make a serious splash.