SME Research


To determine the number of SMEs (including micro-businesses) present in Kenya, South Africa, Pakistan, Egypt, UAE, and Nigeria as well as identify some specific information on Pakistan, such as the top financial challenges affecting SMEs in the country and a breakdown of those SMEs by industry.

Early Findings

The number of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) operating in each country are listed below:
  • There are 41.5 million micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises in Nigeria. Of that figure, microenterprises constitute the overwhelming majority at 99.8 percent (41.4 million) of total SMEs. Small businesses account for 71,228 entities (0.17%), and there are 1,793 medium enterprises in the county.
  • According to the South African Small Enterprise Development Agency (SEDA), there are 2.5 million small, medium, and micro-businesses (SMMEs) in South Africa. The report is further divided the SMMEs into formal SMMEs, which account for 736 thousand businesses, and informal SMMEs, which account for 1.7 million businesses.
  • There are 400 thousand micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises operating in the United Arab Emirates, according to a report by Thomson Reuters.
  • Over 2.5 million SMEs operate in Egypt, counting micro-enterprises. The majority are microbusinesses employing less than 20 workers, which account for 85.4 percent of SMEs in the country.

Summary of Findings

In our initial hour of research, we were able to determine the number of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) operating in Kenya, Nigeria, the UAE, Egypt, and South Africa.

Proposed next steps:

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