TravelStart will power Jumia Travel’s pan-African online travel booking portal and will take control of the sales, fulfilment and customer service aspects of Jumia Travel online booking websites in all its operating territories.
In a statement, Joe Falter, EVP Jumia On-Demand Services said, “We have a strong belief in the potential of the online travel industry and travel portals in Africa and have built a strong platform across our markets to address this opportunity. In Travelstart, we have found the perfect partner to build on the success Jumia Travel has achieved so far. While we will continue to promote the travel category, Travelstart will be responsible for the operational side of the business. The travel ecosystem in Africa will be further energised by this partnership.”
Travelstart, which had in the past shut its Kenyan office and run it remotely from Cape Town will now make re-entry into the local market with a team at Jumia Travel which counts Kenya and Nigeria as its largest markets.
Three weeks ago, Travelstart.co.za launched an online bus booking platform to help customers save time and money by comparing bus tickets from competing companies and serving the cheapest fare for a return or one-way route within South Africa, or to neighbouring countries.
Earlier, Travelstart acquired the Club Travel Group and its subsidiaries in June 2019 and the deal was subject to the approval of South Africa’s Competition Commission.
“This partnership will ensure we remain hyper-focused on our growth and path to profitability as we reinvest our resources in our key markets, services and technology to create the best customer experience in Africa and allow Jumia to thrive,” added Falter.
Travelstart, which operates in nine African countries, will use the partnership to tap new customers in markets where digital is emerging.
“Twelve thousand customers travel with us daily. Being Jumia’s exclusive distribution partner will help even more travellers in Africa unlock high quality online travel services,” said Stephan Ekbergh, CEO of Travelstart.
Jumia Rwanda on the other hand has announced plans to shut down its operations in the country after six years of operations after a similar move in Tanzania and Cameron.
The firm announced today, December 9, 2019, that it will no longer accept cash on delivery and will only process pre-paid orders while Jumia prime subscribers will be contacted about their refunds.
Jumia will now allow vendors to sell their wares via its classifieds platform Jumia.rw which will mean no inventory and less operational costs for Jumia.