Frost and Sullivan identifies the mega trends that will shape the future of the South African economy

Audacious predictions and strategic plans unveiled at GIL 2013: Africa

The Frost & Sullivan Growth Innovation Leadership (GIL 2013: Africa) event took place on 15 August at the Table Bay hotel in Cape Town. Over 200 CEOs and their executive teams gathered to share best practises and discuss the latest predictions for various industry sectors up to the year 2030.

Frost & Sullivan Chairman, David Frigstad, led the day’s proceedings by emphasising the importance of innovation in developing a competitive edge and driving long term revenue growth. Dorman Followwill, Partner for Frost & Sullivan, then went on to present the Mega Trends of the Mind, Body and Soul, drawing attention to the fact that business is driven primarily by human needs. “These core drivers of human behaviour influence the way in which we do business,” said Followwill. “They determine spending decisions, inform government policies, and also drive important family and personal choices.”

Dr Ismael Lagardien of the National Planning Commission Secretariat for South Africa supported Followwill’s message by stating that, as citizens, we need to be actively involved in our own personal development and that of the nation. “Change begins at home, in schools, and with government,” stated Lagardien. “We need to hold one another accountable for performance. In order to move forward and grow our economy, it is crucial for government to support the collaboration between businesses and public sector, as well as collaboration between different spheres of government.” The National Development Plan (NDP 2030) is now entering the implementation phase, with each national department drawing up a 5 year plan to support its actualisation.

Other highlights of the event included the rapid-fire 360 degree insight session on predictions across the energy and power, information and communication technologies, infrastructure, and public sector industries to 2030. Hendrik Malan, Operations Director for Frost & Sullivan Africa, opened the session by indicating that Africa has just experienced its best growth decade on record and that there is tremendous scope for growth. “The continent has moved from an aid-dependant, extractive based economy; to one with the highest Rate of Return (ROR) on investment in the world,” he said. Africa’s growth rate has outpaced that of the global GDP growth average by more than 2% since the turn of the millennium.”

Based on current Frost & Sullivan analysis, it was also shown that only 5 percent of households across Africa have access to internet. In Nigeria, oil accounts for 95 percent of export earnings and that gas will be the feedstock of choice across the continent by as early as 2020. In sub-Saharan Africa, trade is expected to increase to 1,175Mt by 2030, and the Mauritius Freeport offers enormous potential with a 2.5 percent growth rate and a connection to more than 400 million consumers in the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

Gert Schoonbee, Managing Director of T-Systems South Africa, also delivered an insightful presentation on how “To Achieve: Zero Distance” to your employees, to your customers and within your society.

The Mega Trends Think Tank workshop session stimulated participants to envisage what the world will look like, along with key issues that will be the form the focus of debate, in 2020. The oil and gas track predicted rapidly increased access to energy resources for all Africans, as well as a radical reduction in poverty.

David Frigstad then presented Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu with the Growth Innovation Leadership award for Visionary Innovation in Global Economic Development. He accepted the award with grace, while recognising the achievements in setting South Africa on a new course, in what was really a glorious struggle for good. “What we proved is that people have the power to overcome their most pernicious problems when they work together to achieve their goals,” he said.

“We have the power to settle the Israel-Palestine crisis; we have the power to ensure that poor people in the south are not left out (again) in the new north-led race for minerals and energy resources; we have the power to slow down global warming and prevent the destruction of our earth.”

Birgitta Cederstrom, Frost & Sullivan’s Director for Growth Innovation & Leadership in Africa, presented South African entrepreneur, Ludwick Marishane, with the Growth Innovation Leadership Award for his invention DryBath™; a proprietary blend of a biocide, bioflavonoids, and moisturisers yielding one’s ability to bathe without water. DryBath™ aims to save the lives of millions of people globally affected by preventable diseases caused by poor hygiene and sanitation.

The GIL programme is proud to be a part of the changing corporate and industrial scape of Africa, bringing together best thought leaders from across all industries and regions for what has been a truly learning experience.

To secure a booking at the next GIL: Africa event, and to learn more about Frost & Sullivan’s growth strategies, please contact Samantha James at [email protected] Visit for more information on Frost & Sullivan’s Global Community of Growth, Innovation and Leadership.

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Frost and Sullivan identifies the mega trends that will shape the future of the South African economy