Growing pains

Growing pains

2018 East Africa CEO Outlook Report

2018 East Africa CEO Outlook Report

On 29 May 2018, KPMG in East Africa launched the KPMG 2018 East Africa CEO Outlook at events held in Nairobi,
Uganda and Dar es Salaam.  The KPMG 2018 East Africa CEO Outlook is now available and can be accessed here. The Outlook is a detailed presentation of the findings by CEOs in East Africa including Ethiopia.  You can also access the 2018 KPMG Global CEO Outlook here for insights by global CEOs.


Like their global counterparts, East Africa CEOs too are embracing disruption with 92 percent seeing it as an opportunity as opposed to a threat.  Indeed, 70 percent of the CEOs said they were actively disrupting their sectors.  The CEOs are however cognisant of the risks associated with emerging technologies and this risk was among the top three threats identified. Cyber attack preparedness and containment of such attacks was a key concern in the findings.  Only a third of East African CEOs believe that their organisations are either ‘very well’
or ‘well’ prepared for a future cyber-attack.



East Africa CEOs are approaching growth with a healthy dose of pragmatism.  A large majority of the CEOs anticipate moderate increases in both revenue and headcount over the next 3 years and 75% anticipate top-line revenue growth for their organisation of 2 percent or less.  East Africa CEOs have however prioritised strategic alliances with third parties as their primary strategy for growth (27 percent), their next strategic priority is organic growth (25 percent), driven by innovation, R&D and recruitment. Although Mergers and Acquisitions came across as a moderate consideration for growth, Joint Ventures, a form of M&A seems to be gaining momentum in East Africa.


Digital becomes personal

Consistent with global CEOs, East African CEOs are confident about their transformation abilities at the personal, and management levels. 69 percent agree that they are personally prepared to lead the organisation through radical transformation. On protection of data, 73 percent of East African CEOs feel that protecting customer data is one of the most important responsibilities of the CEO, in order to grow the customer base in the future.


The KPMG 2018 East Africa CEO Outlook is no doubt an impactful thought leadership that will help start conversations on matters that affect your businesses. At KPMG, we are happy to engage with you and to support you in realising your strategies and aspirations to remain competitive in the marketplace.

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