Orange has announced a €75 million investment in e-commerce company Africa Internet Group (AIG), as the company steps up its drive to grow in the continent. Companies in AIG’s portfolio include Jumia, online property marketplace Lamudi, e-commerce marketplace Kaymu, food delivery website Hellofood and hotel booking platform Jovago.
Through the investment, Orange joins MTN, Millicom, Rocket Internet, AXA and Goldman Sachs in becoming a shareholder in AIG, which owns a number of technology firms across 23 African countries.
Orange CEO Stephane Richard said the strategic investment now helps the French operator to “play a leading role in the fast growing e-commerce market in Africa”.
“In particular, across the 12 countries where we have a common presence, this investment will enable us to significantly develop our ability to market products and services developed by Orange, Middle East and Africa over the internet.”
The Orange Investment comes after the Africa Internet Group announced that it had raised $326 million in fresh funding. “From the very first investment in Jumia, we have been consistently impressed by both the high-quality management team and growth trajectory. We believe that Jumia is a proven winner and that it will continue to be the leading e-commerce platform in Africa,” Rocket Internet CEO Oliver Samwer said in a statement.
The investment by Orange comes as part of the company’s strategic Essentials 2020 plan to develop digital services in Africa and the Middle East.
“We are thrilled by Orange’s equity investment and are eager to translate our strategic partnership into unique offers for our customers,” said AIG co-CEO Sacha Poignonnec
Jumia is an Amazon-like company formed in 2012 and operates in Morocco, Egypt , Nigeria, Kenya, Ivory Coast and six other African countries. Since inception, Jumia has reported double-digit growth month-over-month . Products sold via the Jumia platform covers mainly fashion and electronics.
Lamudi on the other hand is an online real estate classified website focusing exclusively on the emerging markets.
The website offers sellers buyers, landlords and renters a secure and easy-to-use platform to find or list properties online. Founded in 2013 our platform is already available in more than 30 countries in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America.