Product Analysis

In today’s world, successful product development needs a clear understanding of the consumer (or business) needs your product will address. This calls for an understanding of the market, the consumers’ needs (or needs of businesses), along with who your target market is and who your competitors are.

Examples of assignments that we have successfully completed in this area include:

IPLC & MPLS VPN Market Analysis

This constituted an analysis of a southern African country International Private Leased Circuit (IPLC) and MPLS VPN markets. This included primary research both among Virtual Private Network (VPN) service providers and all the major VPN users in the country, as well as an extensive competitive analysis of the various product offerings and go-to-market strategies. The analysis provided a thorough assessment of the IPLC and VPN markets and resulted in a set of recommendations for the client’s future strategy.

Leased-line Market Analysis

This assessment of a leased-line market provided the following outputs: breakdown of the fixed leased-line market and its demographics; assessment of potential future developments in the local leased-line market vs other corporate/business solutions such as the VPN; identification of potential vertical market segments for future deployment of wireless leased lines. We also undertook modelling to determine the growth of the leased-line market over a period of five years. Data and forecasts resulting from the project were used by the client to determine the extent of opportunity in the market to offer wireless leased-line services.

Internet Market Analysis (West Africa)

This study undertook an analysis of the business internet user market in a large West African market. The aim of the study was to assess the current and potential future need for a range of internet services and access technologies. A conjoint analysis of pricing points vs service offering was a part of this study. Primary research conducted in the market was used to perform a market analysis and develop a set of recommendations for the client. The study enabled the client to determine the size of the opportunity and to develop possible market entry strategies.

Internet Market Analysis (East Africa)

This study undertook an analysis of the business internet user market in a major East African market. The aim of the study was to assess the current state of the internet market (and the broader telecommunications market) in terms of a competitive market landscape, as well as products and services consumed in this market by the business users. The study also assessed the potential future need for a range of internet services and access technologies. Primary research was conducted in the market with all the major telecommunications operators, data network operators and internet service providers. A set of recommendations was developed for the client. The study enabled the client to determine the size of the opportunity and to begin developing possible market entry strategies.

Media Market Analysis

The project addressed the media sector in the local market, looking at market participants, content and pricing, and delivery of content from a technological perspective. The project further investigated the broadband market in the country and potential future uptake levels across various broadband technologies. In-country primary research was undertaken with public, government and private organisations (including broadcasters) involved in the media sector, as well as major data services/broadband providers. The project was undertaken for a European investor who wished to explore the possibility of delivering triple-play services through a data service provider vehicle. We developed a model to forecast the uptake of media and broadband services in the country. The client used the outputs of the project to attract further investment through a roadshow.

Storage-as-a-Service Market Analysis

This study undertook an analysis of usage propensity of various virtual storage products by the business community in a large southern African market. This was paralleled by an analysis of various forms of storage-as-a-service offered in more developed global markets. A large sample of business end-user face-to-face interviews provided primary research input data into the study. The study also included the development of a forecast model, generating a five-year future view of the likely levels of uptake of storage-as-a-service across various vertical market segments and company size, as well as likely size of the market in monetary value. The study culminated in the development of a set of strategic recommendations for the client, which were used as input into future product development.

Software-as-a-Service Market Analysis

This study undertook an analysis of the software-as-a-service market among business users in a major southern African market. The study also entailed an assessment of various software-as-a-service models in use in developed global markets, as well as their use in the African market in question. All major managed data service providers were interviewed and a top-down model was constructed to gauge the potential uptake of software-as-a-service by the business community over a period of five years, as well as potential revenues generated by these services. The study resulted in a set of strategic recommendations to the client, which (in conjunction with a parallel end-user research) was used to develop future products to be released into the market.

Utility Computing & Storage Market Analyses

We undertook two separate studies of the utility computing and storage markets. In both instances the analysis focused on analysing the competitive market landscape, primary target markets for such services offered by service providers, as well as a forecast of market growth and development over the medium-term future. Market demand forecasting was an integral component of this analysis. Both projects provided the client with critical informational inputs into the decision-making process on future market positioning.

Data Centre Market Analysis

The study involved primary and secondary market research to map out the current competitive market landscape in data centre services provision, determine likely future market developments, assess drivers and inhibitors in the uptake of data centre services among end-users. Primary research involved interviews with the major providers of data centre services in the country. Secondary research included identification of global industry trends, as well as current product and service offering in the local market. The analysis also provided input into primary end-user research undertaken to forecast the future level of demand for data centre services in the local market over the medium term. The outputs of this study assisted the client in development of his own data centre strategy.

Data Centre Market Analysis (West Africa)

We undertook a study of a West African data centre market on behalf of one of the major African fixed-line telecommunications operators. The objective of the study was to assess the current commercial data centre market, products and services offered, the extent of services rendered, and to identify drivers and inhibitors in the uptake of such services by the end-users. Furthermore, the objective was to determine potential future market development and the likely timeframe. Market information was gathered primarily through in-country face-to-face interviews with current and potential future providers of commercial data centre facilities, and with a number of corporates, primarily in the financial sector. Research also included viewing of existing data centre facilities. Upon performing the relevant market analysis, we provided the client with a number of options on engaging in the local market.

eCommerce Portal Market Analysis

The client wished to assess his own eCommerce Portal vis-à-vis other portals in the market and recent market developments. Africa Analysis performed a competitive analysis of the market, employing both secondary research and primary research in the form of interviews with eCommerce Portal service providers in the market. More broadly, it also assessed latest market developments and trends in the ecommerce market as a whole and undertook sizing of the market and the future opportunity. The client used the results of the analysis to revamp its eCommerce Portal offering, in order to position it more competitively in the market.

Web Conferencing Market Analysis

The objective of this project was to undertake an analysis of the local web conferencing market, including the competitive market landscape. Both domestic (internal) and foreign (external) service providers were assessed. The market was analysed in terms of products and services offered, business models followed by service providers, and the ability of users to access such services. The project outputs provided the client with insights into the market and assisted in making decisions related to future market participation.

Convergence Trends Analysis

The study aimed to gauge the level of current implementation of converged services by end-users and the roadmap going into the future. Within the framework of this study, we conducted secondary and primary end-user research. Secondary research was used to source information on the latest developed market trends as far as convergence is concerned, while end-user face-to-face interviews were conducted with major corporates nationally to assess the following: convergence adoption levels, achieved phases of convergence implementation, planned extent of convergence implementation and relevant timelines, drivers and inhibitors of convergence implementation, as well as specific user requirements and the level of satisfaction with service providers. In addition, we interviewed service providers (five per country) and large corporate companies (10 per country) in five African countries to obtain a view on the extent of converged services offering and adoption across Africa. The client used the results of this study as input into his strategy development.

Operator Market Share Analysis, South Africa

This project’s objective was to undertake research and analysis of a southern African telecommunications market to determine the market share of a market participant across various mobile and fixed-line, voice and data market segments. Africa Analysis undertook 410 corporate interviews on a national basis to gather data on telecommunications usage and spend levels, as well as interviews with other operators and service providers in the market. Data gathered was used as input into a model developed by Africa Analysis, which provides historical, current as well as forward-looking forecast outputs indicating the operator’s share in the various market segments. Outputs of this study were used to help shape the operator’s strategy for future participation across different market segments.