Nigeria’s leading online retail company, Jumia, plans to increase its local sales from 20 to 40 per cent as the Yuletide season approaches. The company says it is eager to win more sales from Nigeria’s crude oil-driven economy, which is expected to grow more than 6 per cent this year and 7 per cent in 2014.
Co-founder of Jumia, Tunde Kehinde, said it is important for Nigerians to know that Jumia’s retail business is not a scam, adding that in the lead-up to Christmas, Jumia aims to boost revenue by featuring more items in its holiday section for Nigerians to make their choices using computer tablets.
“Jumia has taken a page from the playbook of Amazon.com (AMZN): delivering electronics, clothes, and even refrigerators to the front doors of Nigerians in recent past,” he said.
The retail company is fast winning more Nigerians who before now were used to shopping locally from open markets and stores, which in the past usually meant higher prices, less selection options and sitting in traffic for hours to get to a store.
To combat fears for online fraud and educate Nigerians about secured online shopping, the company said it has a direct sales team of about 200 in Lagos and Port Harcourt.
Co-founder of Jumia, Raphael Afaedor, said: “It takes a bit more effort to get people to change their behaviour. But Jumia has been engaging Nigerians in shopping sessions in businesses, churches and homes, answering questions and using tablet computers to demonstrate how to place orders.”
“There are people who are open to online shopping -- people who have travelled or have lived abroad,” he said.
According to a Bloomberg News survey of economists, Jumia has a fleet of about 200 vehicles. Almost two-thirds are motorbikes, which are easier to go through traffic jams.
Jumia’s orders are mostly paid for at the point of delivery while items with higher amount are paid for through ATM cards, the company said.