Jumia, Reckitt Partner to Enhance Online Shopping in Africa

Jumia and Reckitt have partnered to enhance e-commerce during the lockdown period when customers are home-bound but still need constant supplies especially for groceries and pharmaceuticals.

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As the globe unites in observing the social distancing to curb the spread of coronavirus, people are avoiding physical stores. Online ordering/ shopping is therefore becoming popular by the day, especially for the necessities for use to make this turbulent time more manageable.

Jumia, a leading e-commerce platform in Africa, has in that spirit, announced a major partnership with Reckitt Benckiser, the global health products manufacturer to help consumers access hygienic products at the lowest price online.

“Reckitt Bencksier is delighted to partner with Jumia to ensure that access to the highest quality hygiene and health products is a right, not a privilege. By financing nationwide free shipping in all markets where Jumia operates, from capital cities to more rural areas, Reckitt Benckiser is providing a fair access to supply for all consumers, regardless of their location,” said Bart Meermans, SVP RB Health Africa/ Middle East / Turkey.

The partnership will provide a steady supply of hygiene products such as soap bars, disinfectants, and liquid hand wash at affordable pricing. These products are facing a growing demand from consumers taking hygiene precautions to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Jumia will be taking 0% commission on Dettol, JIK and Harpic, and will reinvest the initial commission into discounts on the consumer price. Reckitt Benckiser is financing free shipping nationwide on all listed products. Consumers will be able to access all products from the “Stay Safe” page on Jumia, co-owned with Reckitt Benckiser.

“At Jumia, our primary concern is the health and well-being of our teammates, consumers, partners and communities. We strive to continue operating so that customers continue to use ecommerce as a safe way to shop in this challenging time. We are proud to work closely with Reckitt Benckiser through the “Stay Safe” campaign, which shares consistent information about Covid-19 and provides access to key hygiene products at the most affordable price possible for our consumers,” Romain Christodoulou, SVP Jumia Group.

The partnership will cover 8 of the markets where Jumia operates, Algeria, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, South Africa and Uganda and will provide critical information around Coronavirus. Reckitt Benckiser has created the Mythbuster website to help update consumers on risks and best practices to avoid the virus from spreading. Jumia is creating several awareness campaigns which direct consumers to both the ‘Stay Safe’ page and the ‘Mythbuster’ website.

Jumia also stopped the use of cash for payments in view of the Central Bank of Kenya guidelines, saying it had witnessed a brisk activity fuelled by a rising number of shopping requests for essential products bought and delivered directly to homes.

Chief executive Sam Chappatte said all customers must pay via mobile money or bank cards via JumiaPay platform; “This is according to Central Bank of Kenya guidelines that we deter use of cash as it has been found to be a major vector for Coronavirus infections. You can pay upfront or await delivery to make payments via mobile cashless platforms,” he said.

He further noted that Kenyans have now stopped thinking about luxury items, as such searches have drastically reduced on the online market platform. This suggests that people are thinking about the basic needs that matter most during this period.

Priscilla Muhiu, head of marketing and growth, Africa at on-demand courier service Glovo, said the number of new users signing up to use the app has been soaring. Even the brick-and-mortar business models seen in Kenya’s chain stores are now changing to adapt to the new market demands.

“Groceries and pharmacy orders have increased by 30 percent. The increase has been greater in goods such as food and household items.On certain items such as hand-sanitizers, limits on the quantity a buyer can get have been put in place to ensure goods don’t run out,” she said.

Tusker Mattresses, the operator of Tuskys supermarkets, has since March 12 gone on a massive activation of its e-commerce services to cater for its huge base of customers who now avoid physical shopping due to the government directive on social distancing.

Perfecting its home delivery services at selected Tuskys branches in Nairobi, the firm has now expanded the solution to nine branches in response to the growing customer demand. Group CEO Dan Githua, told MarketPlace the solution, which was initially delivered at T-Mall, Embakasi, Westlands and Athi River branches, will now be available at five more branches.

“The new branches providing home deliveries in their localities now include Karasha (Kenyatta Avenue), Greenspan, Milele, Ongata 1 and Thigiri with several more expected to be added,” he said

 

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