SMALL and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) constitute 95 percent of all businesses in the country and contribute to over 35 per cent of the country's GDP, which places the country on a good position as a home to a vibrant and growing ecosystem of SMEs.
According to Tanzania's Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture (TCCIA), SMEs play a key role in driving forward economic growth. They represent a variety of firms in different sectors of the economy, including agriculture, transport and retail.
The report released by GSMA Intelligence on the Digital transformation in Tanzania 'the role of mobile technology and impact on development goals' states that collectively, the firms have helped transform Tanzanian development.
"These firms have helped in transforming Tanzania by generating new jobs, fostering innovation, helping to deliver goods and services for low-income individuals as well playing an important role in integrating women and youth into the mainstream economy," reads part of the report.
Moreover, SMEs have been identified as a strong gear that will play a pivotal role in helping Tanzania attain its middle-income economy status by 2025.
Despite the economic, political and social benefits, key constraints remain for the future of SME development. According to the report, there are some challenges that face small businesses. These include difficulties in accessing financial services as well as poor internet connectivity.
However, the private sector is working hard to find solutions to these problems. Tigo Tanzania is a prime example of a telecommunications firm that is at the forefront of driving improvements to support the future growth of these businesses.
The company has recently announced the launch of their Office internet service, which has been specifically designed to improve internet connectivity for SMEs. Tigo's offering allows businesses to connect up to 32 devices to their high-speed 4G+ mobile internet, and access a suite of useful applications through Microsoft 365.