Rocket Internet-Backed Jumia Raises $150M For Its African E-Commerce Business

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Rocket Internet-backed Jumia is in the money today, after the Africa-based e-commerce company announced it has raised €120 million ($150 million) in new funding. The company confirmed that the round values it at €445 million ($555 million).

Jumia sells a range of products, from clothes, to electronics, cosmetics and even alcohol. It is active in nine African markets — Cameroon, Egypt, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Uganda, and Tanzania — and also the UK.

The company was founded in 2012 and previously raised $26 million from Summit Partners back in March of last year. Jumia didn’t specific how it will spend the fresh capital, but Jeremy Hodara — co-CEO of Africa Internet Group (AIG), which owns Jumia — said the funding was a validation for the company’s progress.

“We are very pleased to have been given this show of confidence, which acknowledges Jumia’s success. We consider this a recognition of the huge potential of e-commerce in Africa and the strong momentum of Jumia across the continent,” he commented.

Jumia has modified its business to fit with emerging markets, for example it offers cash-on-delivery for payments and made a big push around its Android app, to take advantage of Africa’s top smartphone platform. That said, Hodara’s partner — AIG co-CEO Sacha Poignonnec — said its customers still “expect the same quality of service as anywhere else in the world.”

Jumia, which has 1,500 staff, claimed it has doubled the number of sales it processes this year, though it didn’t provide a concrete number nor an update on its customer figures. The last time we heard — back in 2013 — its website received around 150,000 daily unique visitors, with a registered user base of 750,000.

Rocket Internet, which listed on Germany’s Frankfurt stock exchange last month, is consolidating five of its emerging market e-commerce businesses into one mega-organization, called the Global Fashion Group (GFG), but Jumia is not part of that initiative. AIG, the company’s parent, is a joint venture between Rocket Internet, MTN, and Latin American conglomerate Millicom.