East Africa CEO Survey 2024

Africa Business Agenda

Thriving in an age of continuous reinvention


PwC released its 27th Annual Global CEO Survey which polled 4,702 CEOs in 105 countries and territories from 2 October through 10 November 2023. From an East Africa perspective 231 interviews were conducted.

Seventy percent of East Africa’s CEOs indicated they are optimistic in their local territory’s growth prospects over the next 12 months. This can be attributed to the uptick in infrastructure investment in the region, recovery of tourism and economic diversification. CEOs in Eastern Africa also have a positive sentiment pertaining to their long term business viability, with 55% being confident that their business models will remain viable for more than ten years, if they continue to operate on their current path. 


Among other key findings:

  • Despite a cautiously optimistic view of global economic growth sentiments amongst East African CEOs, concerns around inflation, macroeconomic volatility, cyber risk and geopolitical conflict are top of mind for them.
  • In positioning themselves for the future, CEOs are aware of the role technology can play in unlocking value. While the implementation of generative AI has been slow, CEOs recognise that this technology will enhance their companies’ ability to establish trust with stakeholders (54%) and improve the quality of their products and services (59%).
  • As African countries continue to prioritise taking action to ease the impact of climate change, East African CEOs and the businesses they lead are making good progress towards taking actions related to climate change as they see the significance of doing such. 

The totality of this year’s survey results reflects an awareness among CEOs of the challenges that affect their business models. Respondents identified the regulatory environment as a significant obstacle and additional concerns were raised about the lack of skills within the company's workforce (29%) and competing operational priorities (26%). Infrastructure challenges (24%) and a shortage of technological capabilities (23%) added further pressure on operations. Supply chain instability (22%) and bureaucratic processes within the company (14%) were also cited as barriers to creating value in their businesses.

For East Africa CEOs to take advantage of the growth opportunities that exist, while safeguarding the future viability of their businesses, they will need to tackle both existential as well as operational challenges, of which are within their sphere of influence.


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East Africa CEO survey 2024

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Peter Ngahu

Peter Ngahu

Country and Regional Senior Partner, Eastern Africa, PwC Kenya

Tel: +254 (0) 20 285 5090

Angela Wanjeri

Angela Wanjeri

Clients and Markets Development, PwC Kenya

Tel: +254 (0) 20 285 5000