AI-BO is building a better way to do market research in Africa.
AI-BO is an African market research tool that turns surveys into an engaging, real-time conversation. All through WhatsApp.
We are raising a seed round to build a scalable product (client ordering system, survey → WhatsApp bot automation, automate insights) and expand into the rest of Africa.
Africa is a 1.2 billion–person market on the cusp of transformative growth. Businesses and investors recognise this and recognise that Africa is the continent that is going to yield the highest growth in the next 2 decades. However, no one understands Africa. Investing in Africa is perceived as a gamble because of the unstable political systems and lack of reliable information or data about how consumers in Africa operate.
🔬 The case for research:
95% of product launches fail. 90% of small businesses and start-ups fail. 42% of shutdown start-ups that launched a product didn't solve a valid customer problem. (), (), ()
→ The cure to prevent failing like this is to investigate the market before you launch and validate that your launch is likely to be successful.
Businesses that base decisions on data – not instincts or experience – are 19 times more likely to be profitable. ( ) 1,000 most valuable technology companies spend 31.3% of revenue on research and development—businesses recognise the importance of research. ()
🤳 Normal techniques are not going to work in Africa
Internet penetration is 40% compare to 69% in the rest of the world. () And, Africa’s cellular data is 4.2x more expensive than Northern America. () 5.4x less data used in Africa compare to North America. ()
Because of this, traditional online research techniques used to access consumers don’t work. Don’t take my word for it though....
😭 Market research in Africa is broken...
Market research revenue in Africa accounts for only 2% of the world. It produces less than 1% of global research output. Despite making up 16% of the global population. → Inefficient and slow (, ) Digital research methods are used 3.1x globally than in Africa (40% to 13%). Due to lack of digital forces here, campaign timelines can take as long as 2-4 weeks. The same research campaign in Africa costs 1x-6x its American counterpart. Using the Big Mac Index to adjust for relative pricing; this works out to 2.3x - 13.5x more for a South African business Africa has a 10x smaller research panel per capita than Central & South America. And only 4.6% of global research panel against 16% of population. → Inaccessible and unrepresentative (, )
Enabling you to successfully launch in new African markets
Yazi is a market research platform that enables growing businesses to make data-driven decisions. Yazi lets you target and retarget a consumer segment that is typically slow and expensive to reach in Africa. Survey (ask questions) and get insights in a day. All through WhatsApp.
Affordable → 50% - 70% cheaper than existing market research players. Yazi will be able to further drop rates as all operations are automated and respondent pool scales Scalable → Can move into any conversation channel to reach consumers wherever they are. Accurate → Over 5 types of quality checks to ensure answers are authentic Access → WhatsApp is the app with the highest penetration in Africa (~96% of internet users in Kenya, SA, Nigeria). () A 20 question survey typically uses $0.01 of cell data to complete. Often free → subscribe to monthly WhatsApp bundle. Many Africans possess a distrusting perception of software and online-earning activities. WA means; no need to go somewhere foreign on the internet or download a new app. WA is sticky, allows frictionless onboarding and refer-ability → don’t need to learn new software and fits into an existing behaviour (comfortable) → fast response speed. History of previous conversation → build trust with respondent and enrich consumer profiles overtime.
Specify audience & use question routing
Interactive results dashboard
🛠 Quality data
4 layers of quality checks
De-risk new product Africa expansion by understanding your target market.
👉 Research more frequently: Cheaper & Faster turnaround time
👉 Reach your target audience: Bigger reach on WhatsApp
👉 Better decisions: Representative audience & accurate data
📈 Why now ??
60% of the population in Africa will be under 24 by 2025, and will be home to 1 in 3 youths (aged 15 to 35) globally by 2050 → Growth in work population and digital adoption. () By 2030, Africa is expected to be home to over 1.7 billion consumers with total consumer expenditure of $2.5 trillion, a $570b increase. 263% increase in venture funding from 2020 - 2021 in Africa. $10b forecasted for 2022. → Scale of investment into understanding the African consumer. () In the next decade, the number of Internet users in Africa is expected to grow by 57.42m (11%) → Big opportunity for new digital products in Africa. () 32% increased use of data in organisation’s decision-making, from 38%-50% (2018-2020). 5%-23% of revenue on Research & Development is the average spend by the tech sector → Increasing budget allocated to research and validation. (, ), (), () Last on the roadmap for most international startups, mainly because of infrastructure → Research facilitates growth and is a first-mover industry in tech-enabled growth.
🌍 Market Size
SAM: Bottom-up Market Sizing calc (Annual)
75+ Active projects & ventures, €3.4b Total portfolio valuation.
Venture builder combining services,
tooling, and capital to create a
blueprint for startup success.
🔥 In just 13 months...
Responses after 1 hour
🛣 Where are we going?
Startups in Africa
New product launch & market expansion
Consultants, Advertising, VC, Product/UX agencies
New business models
Audience query engine
Integrate 3rd party data sources; Yoco, 22Seven, loyalty etc.
WhatsApp survey Saas
SurveyMonkey for WhatsApp
Retail, Consumables, Telco, Financial services
Scale-ups expanding to Africa
💸 Funding breakdown
Pre-seed round of ~$350K compromising of notable angels in the African startup ecosystem
💳 Business Model
Large customers and resellers pay a subscription fee. Remaining pay a per response usage fee.
⌚︎ In 5 years time...
Every company servicing a B2C customer segment in Africa will use Yazi Yazi will be so easy and fast to use that it will be completely non-sensical not to use it Yazi will be across multiple chat and media platforms (channel agnostic) Yazi will generate automatic insights using advanced ML and algorithms Yazi will be viewed as a decision-making assistance company; “Hmmm, I’m not sure they’d actually like that. Let me just do a quick check on Yazi”