By Chinenye Anuforo, [email protected]
Jiji, the largest online marketplace in Africa, has reached an agreement to merge operations with leading tech-enabled automotive trading platform, Cars45, creating a new and leading pan-African auto buying-and-selling business.
Under this agreement, they will merge their operations in Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria.
This is a significant deal as both entities combined are category leaders. Therefore, this merger will create Africa’s Number 1 automotive marketplace for end-users, dealers, and OEMs. Jiji also has presence in the Ugandan and Tanzanian markets.
The merger of operations promises a new level of trade experience for auto buyers and sellers across the three countries. Joining the Jiji family will allow Cars45 users to benefit from Jiji’s market-leading products in online classifieds. In turn, Cars45 brings a unique online-to-offline, O2O buying and selling service, where cars can safely be sold instantly to dealers or via a consumer marketplace to other consumers.
Together, users in the auto sector can expect a new level of convenience layered with technology and transparency in buying and selling cars, combining online and offline capabilities.
Cars that will be traded would be certified through an over 212-point inspection process, which Cars45 has expertise and experience with.
Jiji already operates online classifieds for used cars. However, this new relationship will serve as an offline extension to Jiji’s digital classifieds marketplace platforms.
The merger would also further deepen and formalize the automotive retail process and standardize customer experience across the continent.
Soumobroto Ganguly, CEO of Cars45, said, “We are proud to have built a trusted buying and selling experience in autos. It makes sense to combine online and offline expertise. Merging with Jiji is aimed at creating a new kind of automotive retail experience for users in Africa. We are confident of jointly building an African champion in the O2O automotive sector. Together we look forward to making transactions transparent and convenient for our customers, dealers and franchisees across all our current and future markets. Our business is complimentary, they (Jiji) have a good database of listings, merchants, sellers, dealers. Jiji has got a powerful performance management in Nigeria to generate leads. We (Cars45), on the other hand, have a strong transaction side in terms of bookings and inspections for closing transactions. We hope to combine offerings with all kinds of users and stakeholders.”
Maxim Makarchuk, investor relations manager, Jiji, said, “This merger represents Jiji’s bold step into the transactional business model and an important foundation for building the future of the company.