As Africa’s e-commerce space hots up, JP Morgan also joins the chef to cook the food for the internet party currently going on across Africa. Jumia.com.ng, originally launched as kasuwa.com.ng came into the Nigerian market in June: founded by two young, savvy Africans (Rafael Afaedor and Tunde Kehinde) and funded by Germany based Rocket Internet.
The funding is made into Jumia and Zando(South Africa based Fashion site) through a
German holding company in an all cash-for-equity investment. Jumia currently operates in Nigeria, Egypt and Morocco.
“This investment is a real turning point for Jumia, and e-commerce in Nigeria” said Jumia co-founders and joint-CEO’s Tunde Kehinde & Raphael Afaedor. “With this investment, we will strengthen our current footprint, offering our customers more brands, more categories and more services as well as improving operations; we are among the pioneers of e-commerce in Nigeria and this investment confirms that Nigeria will become a very large market in the very near future.”
J.P. Morgan Asset Management Portfolio Manager Robert Cousin, who worked on the deal from New York, confirmed the transaction, saying, “We are excited to partner with Jumia and Zando as the companies continue to expand their e-commerce presence in Africa.”
What does it mean for the Market?
It is quite obvious that confidence on viability of ecommerce in nigeria and Africa is improving day-by-day. It also points to the fact that, the investors have confidence in the team and their strategies (directly or indirectly). For any startup willing to take on the e-commerce gold rush, a strong financial backing or extreme street sense is needed to succeed in this market.