Michel Verstraeten, Business Development Manager (MEA) for Henkel (Italy) enthused about the prospects for diapers in the Middle East and Africa as a whole. About a third of the world’s babies are born in this region, and the 15 countries with the highest birth rate are all in Africa. MEA thus has the highest unrealised diaper potential, and the key to realising it is identifying where the disposable income will reach the critical level for diaper use.
Mapping diaper penetration against GDP/Capita corrected for PPP (purchasing power parity) shows that a GDP/C-PPP of US$5000 equates to 20% diaper penetration throughout the MEA region. For the Eastern Europe and Central Asia region $15,000 equates to 50% penetration, and for South America, $10,000 equates to 50% diaper penetration.
The threshold for commencement of baby diaper usage is a GDP/C-PPP of around $3500/year. As this figure moves up through $5000 to $10000 the diaper market grows at 20% CAGR, this extreme rate lasting for 5-7 years. From $10000 to $15000 growth slows and penetration levels out at about 75-80%.
Currently in MEA, country GDP/C-PPP ranges from $2500 to $8000 and 500,000 babies per year are being born. Short term, MENA, South Africa and Angola are the main opportunities to focus on. Longer term, Nigeria (“Eldorado” - 20bn diapers/year potential!), Ghana (2.5bn/year) and Ethiopia (4bn/year) are showing strong GDP growth, but Ethiopia is Very Long Term.
(from EDANA Middle East Symposium - Dubai - 14th and 15th Feb 2012)