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Why we need better research on ecommerce in Africa

One deliverable from the annual Ecommerce Weeks held by UNCTAD each year is that countries should provide stats on ecommerce activities in their countries. This is still not happening and we are left with very little idea of how ecommerce is developing outside a few big markets like SA and Kenya. It was interesting to see that according to the Chinese state-run news organization China Daily, Alibaba serviced 4.2 million African customers through its AliExpress services since it entered the Continent. Jumia serviced 4.3 million users and 81 thousand active sellers in the 14 countries it is active in since it started. Amazon is available in 11 countries on the African continent. Jumia offers unique features like allowing customers to pay for items upon delivery (CoD).

For more on the success of Jumia see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BLxyJagWhYw&feature=youtu.be.

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Shahrain Coovadia

Shahrain Coovadia

Shahrain Coovadia is a Cyber Security Consultant at Deloitte, South Africa. Prior to joining Deloitte she started a web-design studio, and worked at the University of Cape Town as a teaching facilitator. Shahrain graduated from the University of Cape Town with a Bachelor of Commerce Honours specialising in Information Systems. She currently facilitates web & database management for Ecommerce Forum South Africa (EFSA).

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