UPDATED: Rocket Internet’s online marketplace Jumia Market has called it a day and is no longer accepting new inventory in both Nigeria, Kenya and various other markets across Africa after trying its best to pivot and survive without much result.
The report, was first made public by TechLoy’s Loy Okezie via his personal Twitter account.
Multiple sources are confirming the Jumia Market shutdown yesterday. Only a few managers are being absorbed into Jumia. More details later.
— Loy Okézie (@Loy_Z) August 2, 2017
Kaymu’s problems started earlier when African Internet Group realized Jumia would save a lot of money and time as a marketplace than its then inventory based model which was expensive and hard to maintain. Another big hit to the eBay clone was when AIG merged its operations and brand into one forming the giant Jumia and rebranding Kaymu to Jumia Market.
Things at the eBay clone were already thick with the Jumia Store pivot to the marketplace and the merger as merchants decided to sell on popular Jumia than the Jumia Market wannabe.
As a last resort, the firm decided to turn into an Instagram of sorts overhauling its design, signature color and platform in Nigeria, Ghana, Morocco, Ivory Coast, Cameroon and Kenya into art-based items like etsy. By changing its business model from an online Marketplace to an online social shopping site, Jumia Market expected the peer to peer model to increase user interaction and sales but the fusion of the social networking site Instagram and e-commerce never worked.
Similar to Instagram, the platform allowed users to comment, like, tag and even follow sellers they like, making it easy to shop from their news feed. The platform was to be predominantly used through the app. “The main objective is to make online shopping simple, straight forward, social and fun,” said Jean-Jacques Maikere, MD Jumia Market. “Our market will tap into individuals looking for very different and unique products that they cannot find anywhere else”
In contrast to the previous model that used to focus on electronics, phones and fashion, the new model will put more emphasis on handcrafted, unique products from fashion, jewelry, décor, art and beauty. “Selling will be really easy for users,” Said Jean- Jacques “What is required is a clear picture and good description of the unique products they sell. The process will take you less than 5 minutes.”
UPDATE with a company statement.
Jumia ecommerce and Jumia market merge to focus on growth
Nairobi, 7th August 2017: Africa’s number one online retailer Jumia has announced a merger between two of its entities; Jumia (e-commerce) and Jumia Market in a bid to boost its growth and strengthen the group’s presence in Kenya.
According to Sam Chappatte, Jumia Kenya’s Managing Director, the integration of Jumia Market platform into Jumia’s e-commerce operations will allow the Group to focus its attention on projects with the highest possible return on investment.
Chappatte said “our growth ambition for the next 18 months is very aggressive. We are building on the current momentum in the business, having hit our highest ever sales month in July, but have a lot to do. The decision to merge our business units will strengthen our ability to provide customers and suppliers with a better service, and to focus our team’s efforts on our most exciting projects”.
Jumia Group is the e-commerce market leader in Africa. Business units under the Jumia umbrella brand in Kenya include Jumia (ecommerce), Jumia Travel, Jumia House and Jumia Food.