This roundup provides an overview of the developments and trends in the eCommerce sector in Africa.
New VC Technology Fund Launches in SA
Image Source: BusinessTech
A new venture capital technology fund, called Grotech, has launched in South Africa. It will focus exclusively on disruptive innovative technologies with global reach.
The new fund aims to achieve an investment return of five times the risk capital invested with a targeted IRR in excess of 30% per annum, according to a company statement.
The fund has been structured so as to benefit from the Section 12 J tax benefit which gives investors the opportunity of obtaining a 100% deduction of the amount invested from their taxable income.
Investors can subscribe any amount between R200,000 and R10 million.
Zambia: Zoona Exceeds 2015 Target
Zoona Zambia, an electronic money transfer firm, has processed close to 9,000,000 customer transactions in Zambia and Malawi, amounting to K3 billion which exceeded the company’s targets.
More than half a million transactions were processed over the holiday season alone. The company also managed to expand its reach in rural areas with over 1,300 outlets across Zambia, despite the difficult market environment and Kwacha depreciation.
Kenya: E-commerce Saves us from Counterfeits, Infinix says
Image Source: Standardmedia.co.ke
NAIROBI, KENYA: Smartphone manufacturer Infinix Mobility has revealed that the decision to eliminate middle men has reduced chances of having their products infiltrated by counterfeits. The manufacturer noted that whereas other bigger brands were having their products mimicked, the adoption of ecommerce in sales has maintained the authenticity of their products.
“We no longer work with middle men as all our products are purchased and delivered through e-commerce for our customers…improving the quality of our customer service,” said Infinix Mobility country Manager Carter Tang. Mr. Tang was speaking in Nairobi during the launch of the ‘Infinix Zero 3’ smartphone which targets middle income earners and the youth demographic.
South Africa/Kenya: Silvertree plans aggressive African expansion
Silvertree Internet Holdings plans to invest around R158 million ($10 million) in African online companies in 2016, through the company’s investment arm, Silvertree Capital. Co-founder and MD, Peter Allerstorfer, says South Africa will remain a key focus but the company has strong ambitions to expand its footprint further afield, specifically in Nigeria and Kenya.
“Our search for young, dynamic, hungry talent who want to scale faster and outpace their competitors, will be a key focus for us in 2016,” according to Allerstorfer.
He says the company is very excited about the ecommerce market in Kenya and is already in initial discussions with a number of businesses in that market.
“For 2016, we plan to further focus our attention in Kenya as we believe it has a huge growth potential.”
Tanzania: Tigo Pays USD 2.1 Million to Customers
Image Source: IT News Africa
Tigo Tanzania has announced another quarterly payment of USD $ 2.1million (Tshs 4.4 billion) to its 4.6 million Tigo Pesa users, the seventh time in a row that the company is distributing profit to its mobile financial services users.
Head of Finance and Risk for Mobile Financial Services, Obedi Laiser, said the company has paid its mobile financial services users a total of US $ 16.5 million (Tshs 35.5 billion) quarterly payments since September 2014. The payment is generated from profit accruing in the Tigo Pesa Trust accounts held with major commercial banks in Tanzania.
“This profit share is payable to all Tigo Pesa users including individual customers, retail agents and our business partners each based on the e-value they have stored in their Tigo Pesa wallets,” Laiser stated.
Kenya: E-commerce Drives Upsurge of Courier Shipments in Kenya
Image Source: IT News Africa
Africa Internet Express (AIX) saw the huge benefits of ecommerce in Kenya and moved fast to incorporate established and growing logistics providers into a single network to provide a constant stream of business through the consolidation of sales volumes from two ecommerce marketplaces – Jumia and Kaymu – and meet the exponential demands of online shoppers and sellers.
AIX Express also partnered with courier service companies such as Aramex, Posta Kenya and G4S to establish offline pick-up points that would allow customers to shop online and pick up the item from an office near them.
Nigeria: E-Commerce – Ecobank Enlists 62 SMEs on Mymall Platform
Ecobank Nigeria is expanding its impact on the ecommerce industry by establishing MyMall Nigeria, with more than 62 Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) already enlisted on the platform.
MyMall is an online trading platform essentially for SMEs to sell and market their goods and services. It is designed for all categories of products and can be accessed from any part of the world.
The online mall, which is different from other ecommerce platforms currently in the market, is merchant-focused and backed by Ecobank.