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Jumia: A decade of resilience for the e-commerce pioneer

By Quentin Velluet

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Posted on July 5, 2022 04:13

jumia A Jumia delivery person in Lagos © Pius Utomi Ekpei / AFP
A Jumia delivery person in Lagos © Pius Utomi Ekpei / AFP

Despite mounting losses since its creation in 2012, the first pan-African e-commerce platform in history remains a model of resilience and an inspiration for many young entrepreneurs. What is its recipe?

The man in his forties, wearing a black polo shirt and leather loafers, is a regular in the back courtyard of the PlaYce Marcory Zone 4 shopping centre in Abidjan. Moustapha, a cosmetics shop employee, visits this Jumia “vendor drop operation” twice a day. This warehouse of about 800 square metres faces the discreet entrance door leading to the Ivorian headquarters of the famous African e-commerce platform. Filled with boxes of all sizes, the dark space where an industrious atmosphere reigns is one of the many warehouses that the brand with the black shopping cart logo makes available to small sellers in the country’s largest city.

For four years now, Jumia has enabled Moustapha’s boss, as well as many other merchants, to deliver items ordered online to their customers quickly. The parcels are pre-packaged in the colours of the group, which is listed on the New York Stock Exchange, and

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