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Jumia CEO: Africa is the last place on earth with massive untapped demand

Jumia CEO Francis Dufay discussed Africa's e-commerce potential in a recent interview, highlighting the company's growth and resilience in the face of challenges

Jumia CEO Francis Dufay spoke with Joumanna Bercetche on Horizons Middle East and Africa by Bloomberg on Thursday (16 May) on the state of Jumia, Africa’s premier e-commerce platform.

Dufay highlighted in the interview that Africa represents the last significant untapped market globally, with immense potential due to its rapidly growing consumer base.

“Africa as a continent, I believe this is the last place on earth with massive untapped demand,” he explained, pointing out that inefficient supply chains and logistics currently hamper the market.

Jumia operates in 10 African countries, including Algeria, Egypt, Ghana, Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal, Tunisia, and Uganda, and sees substantial growth opportunities, particularly in larger markets like Nigeria.

Dufay also noted that Jumia has reported a pivotal Q1, reflecting significant strides in its 18-month turnaround strategy.

“This Q1 is a pivotal quarter for us. We’ve been in a very important turnaround, big transformation of the company for a year and a half now. And we’re seeing all our efforts paying off.”

Despite facing macroeconomic challenges such as high inflation and increased living costs, Dufay assures consumers that Jumia’s robust business model is well-suited to the African market’s unique conditions. “The last two years have been tough… but we’ve built a business model that’s extremely resilient to tough macro environments.”

The company’s strategy also includes forming partnerships with international brands, such as Starlink, to enhance its value proposition. “It’s a very relevant addition to our value proposition to consumers,” the CEO remarked.

Looking ahead, Jumia envisions unparalleled growth driven by Africa’s burgeoning population and increasing consumer demand. “Population in Africa will nearly double in 30 years, so we’re looking at something that’s unprecedented in the history of the world in terms of consumer demand,” the CEO stated.

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