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Jumia reached 1bn visit landmark in 2017

Jumia reached 1bn visit landmark in 2017

Pan-African e-commerce company Jumia has announced it reached the threshold of 1 billion visits across Africa in 2017, while number of products available on the platform increased to 5 million in 2017 from 50,000 in 2012.

Jumia said this growth was supported by the introduction of three main commercial events since its inception in 2012, which have helped to build its customer base.

They are Mobile Week, Jumia Anniversary and Jumia Black Friday. Jumia received over 100 million visits during this year's edition of Black Friday.

"Black Friday is now a day much anticipated in our markets and greatly celebrated by our customers" said Jeremy Hodara, co-CEO of Jumia.

Jumia - which has operations in 35 countries - is not seeing its customer growth matched by revenues, however, with the Rocket Internet annual report last April reporting its revenues fell by 41.7% to EUR84.4 million in 2016, which the company put down to a decrease in gross merchandise volume and its shift to a marketplace model.

Gross merchandise volume decreased by 13.6% to €276.9 million, which the report said was driven by the downturn in the macro-economic environment in its largest markets, Nigeria and Egypt, which resulted in FX scarcity and devaluation.

The company, however, is optimistic that its increasing customer base will lead to profits in the long term, and to encourage this began organising offline events for the first time in 2017.

In Nigeria, the company partnered with Trace to put together the first music and deals festival (Mad Fest) which welcomed over 6,000 guests, while in Kenya a Black Friday concert was organised.

"This showcases not only Jumia's performance, but the state of the e-commerce industry in Africa," said Hodara.

The launch of Jumia Local, a programme promoting sellers who manufacture or produce goods locally in Kenya, Egypt, Nigeria and Algeria, has also served to rally millions of customers, who bought more than two million local items during this year's Black Friday.

"We are promoting local sellers on our website but we are also giving them the means to expand more rapidly than ever. In 2017, we provided a platform, support and training to over 50,000 sellers who use our service to grow their businesses. We are particularly proud of the launch of the Jumia Lending Programme which offers Jumia vendors secured and affordable credit facilities," said Sacha Poignonnec, Co-CEO of Jumia.

In 2018, the company plans to continue to invest in its operations across the continent, with the goal to provide African consumers with improved selection of product, better prices and faster deliveries.

Jumia will also continue to explore strategic opportunities, including through a fundraising round to support the growth and the development of the business.

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