Jiji, the largest online marketplace in Africa belongs to Ukrainian IT company Genesis. However, the financial details of the deal were not made public.
Jiji, supported by Lemma. Group, and Cars45 on Tuesday announced that both companies had reached an agreement, under which they will merge their operations in Ghana, Kenya, and Nigeria.
The merger of Cars45, with its transactional business model, is part of Jiji’s long-term strategy toward transactional marketplaces, according to the Investor Relations Manager, Jiji, Maxim Makarchuk.
Speaking during a press conference in Lagos where the merger was officially announced in Nigeria, Makarchuk, affirmed that the deal will further strengthen Jiji’s position in all the countries where both companies operate and help mitigate some customers’ safety concerns by improving their car-buying and selling.
Jiji was launched in Nigeria in 2014 as an online marketplace that provides buyers and sellers with an avenue to meet and exchange goods and services.
Cars45 on the other hand is a transactional marketplace for car buyers and sellers. The company was founded by former Konga executive Etop Ikpe and has been under different ownership over the last couple of years.
Cars45 first received $5 million in funding in 2017 from the Frontier Cars Group (A company that subsequently became the parent company of Cars45), with support from Balderton Capital, EchoVC, and TPG Growth.
Soon after, Netherlands-based OLX Group acquired Cars45 from FCG, via its OLX Autos brand. Although Jiji didn’t disclose the details of the acquisition of Cars45, it feels like a total acquisition from the OLX group.
Jiji with 5 million+ app installs in Nigeria alone now operates in Kenya, Ghana, Uganda, and Tanzania, with over 400 employees.
The site contains over 4 million active listings worth more than $10 billion, with 300,000+ sellers trading. In May 2021, Jiji became the first major profitable e-commerce company in the region.