Africa is making significant strides in the world of multilingual services. In early 2018, Akorbi demonstrated this by opening a multilingual contact center in Dakar, Senegal, as a way to move into this emerging market. In today’s blog post, Akorbi examines the most popular native languages spoken in Africa, because this market is essential for any company wanting to expand its global market share.
Of Africa’s 1.2 billion people, around 150 million people speak Arabic as their native language. That’s due to the spread of Islam through the northern part of the continent in the 600s and 700s. The remnants of those migrations remain today. Arabic is the official language of many countries in northern Africa, including Egypt, Libya, Morocco, and Algeria. In Senegal along the western coast of Africa, where Akorbi’s multilingual call center is located, people speak French and Arabic as its two official languages.
Around 120 million people speak French in Africa. More than 20 African nations have French as an official language, due mostly to colonization by France from the late 1600s to early 1900s. Most of these countries are in western Africa, stretching from the northwest to central Africa. French is the most common European language spoken in Africa, eclipsing English.
Berber is the traditional language of the nomads of North Africa. It’s still an official language of Algeria and Morocco. Around 56 million people speak Berber or its close dialect, Amazigh. Akorbi works in more than 170 languages worldwide, including many of them spoken by citizens of African countries.
Around 34 million people in Africa speak Hausa. This language is prominent in Nigeria, Africa’s most populated country. It’s also a business language of several West African countries, such as Chad, Cameroon, and Ghana. These important African countries form part of the tropical region of Africa with its lush forests and abundant wildlife. Akorbi can help companies in these countries expand their market share and customer reach.
Yoruba and Oromo
People in Nigeria and West Africa also speak Yoruba, as do around 28 million people. Residents of Benin and Togo also speak Yoruba regularly. Oromo is Africa’s sixth-most popular native language, with approximately 25 million native speakers. People in Kenya and Ethiopia speak this language in their everyday lives.
African people commonly speak two languages, such as their traditional language plus a European language. You might hear someone speak both Arabic and French, Swahili and English, or Yoruba and Portuguese. Suffice it to say, the lingual landscape in Africa is complex. 13 That’s why your firm could use the services of Akorbi for translation and interpretation services when expanding your business into Africa.
Multilingual Support Services and Akorbi
With so many languages spoken throughout Africa, your firm faces challenges to make headway in this emerging market. Akorbi takes the pain out of this process thanks to our usage of more than 170 languages, ADAPT powered by Akorbi, and our specialized compliance measure for the healthcare industry. Contact us or call at 1-877-425-6724 to see what we can do