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Online Marketplaces, as a catalyst for job creation in Africa

Jumia Logo - High res

Online marketplaces could create 3 million new jobs in Africa by 2025; Jumia (NYSE:JMIA) contributed to the study and has already created 5,000 direct jobs on the continent

According to the World Bank, unemployed youths in Africa account for about 60% of the continent’s unemployed workforce. With a growing population of 1.3 billion people whose average age is 20 years and a snowballing middle class expected to reach 1.1 billion out of the 2.5 billion Africans by 2050, there’s no doubt about the importance to create more jobs on the continent.

A new report released recently by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), dubbed “How Online Marketplaces Can Power Employment in Africa”, shows that online digital platforms, such as Jumia, which match buyers and providers of goods and services, could create about three million new jobs in Africa by 2025. These online marketplaces could also boost inclusive economic growth with minimal disruption to existing businesses and workforce norms, according to the report.

We are very happy to have been able to contribute to this study, and highlight the positive impact that Jumia and all other online marketplaces have and will continue to have on the employment on the continent,” said Shreenal Ruparelia, Managing Director of Jumia Food in East Africa, who co-led the contribution to the study.

Jumia’s impact on job creation already includes 5,000 direct jobs across the 14 African countries it operates in, and indirect job creations with sellers, logistic partners, commercial agents, marketing partners. The study highlights the example of two Jumia sellers in Nairobi, Kenya, who have been able to create new jobs and increase their sales and revenues significantly.

In addition to job creation, online marketplaces contribute to skills development programs and are encouraging entrepreneurship. “We have observed that many Jumia alumni have started their own startup companies. We very much believe that we can all benefit from a strong ecosystem of startups in every country and we are proud to bring our contribution to the development of this ecosystem through our training,” noted Juliet Anammah, CEO Jumia Nigeria.

Of the 420 million Africans aged 15 through 35 years, one-third were unemployed as of 2015 according to estimates by the African Development Bank. Around 58% of the total job gains generated by online marketplaces will be created in the consumer goods sector, while the mobility services will generate 18% and the travel and hospitality sector 9%, the report states.

The study finally highlights other positive economic impacts of online marketplaces in Africa: multiplying vendors’ income through increased demand for goods and services in locations currently beyond the reach of conventional retail networks, as well as bringing more women and youth – who in some countries have been excluded from the labor market – into the formal workforce. 

A copy of the report can be downloaded here

About Jumia

Our mission is to improve the quality of everyday life in Africa by leveraging technology to deliver innovative, convenient and affordable online services to consumers, while helping businesses grow as they use our platform to reach and serve consumers.
Jumia is the leading pan-African e-commerce platform active in six regions (14 countries). Our platform consists of our marketplace, which connects sellers with consumers, our logistics service, which enables the shipment and delivery of packages from sellers to consumers, and our payment service, which facilitates transactions among participants active on our platform in selected markets.  

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