Pan-African e-commerce platform Jumia has announced a partnership with Chinese smartphone manufacturer Realme. The joint aim is to roll out new devices at a time when Africa’s smartphone market is enjoying high growth; this in turn will benefit e-commerce.
The two companies have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) according to which realme will have an official store on Jumia’s platform.
The store will eventually connect Realme with online consumers in 11 African countries. However, for the moment the agreement only covers Nigeria. It is expected to expand first to Ghana, Kenya, and Cote d’Ivoire, and then to the other African countries where Jumia operates.
Jack Zhang, General Manager of realme CIS & MEA region, noted that the partnership reflects the company’s ongoing commitment to technology decentralisation “by making technology that used to be only in flagship models accessible to more consumers”.
Sandeep Narayanan, VP, Consumer Electronics, Jumia, pointed out that sub-Saharan Africa is one of the world’s fastest-growing mobile regions and millions of African mobile users use a smartphone to access Jumia for their everyday needs. “With this in mind,” he said, “we look forward to further enhancing the penetration of e-commerce in the region.”
Certainly the growth in sales of affordable smartphones seems to favour both companies in this deal. Also relevant may be the need for African e-commerce to position itself more prominently as the 2023 arrival of Amazon in the region comes closer.