What do you get when you combine a social network and a classifieds board in Africa? It’s called MoboFree and its aim is to become Africa’s leading social marketplace, allowing people to buy, sell and swap products with other trusted people.
Nigeria’s e-commerce market is developing rapidly, with an estimated growth rate of 25% annually and a potential worth of $10 billion – with around 300,000 online orders currently being placed on a daily basis. A report released by McKinsey & Company indicated that e-commerce could account for 10 % of retail sales in Nigeria, Africa’s largest economies, by 2025.
Appsafrica.com caught up with Cristobal Alonso, Co-Founder of MoboFree at Mobile West Africa 2015 to find out more. “Currently, MoboFree has almost 4 million registered users who contribute up to 2 million page views every day, together with more than 400,000 classifieds” explains Alonso. MoboFree is the biggest social marketplace in Nigeria and has a significant footprint in Uganda, Zimbabwe, Ghana, and several other African countries.
“Online trading is growing rapidly across Africa as the IT and mobile infrastructure across the continent continues improving. Despite that, part of our challenge still is convincing people of the value of using the internet to buy, sell or swap items and services,” explains Alonso. The MOBOfree technological platform makes buying and selling online easy for any African user with any device, not only for PCs and smartphones but also feature phones.
“In line with that, we understand that African countries have their own culture, different rates of internet, mobile and smartphone penetration, so every African market should be approached with an individual strategy. Things that work in Europe or United States can be totally unacceptable for African users. MOBOfree entered the African markets with a unique concept as it connects social networks and classifieds together in a single platform. The substantial growth achieved by MOBOfree confirms that this concept is well accepted in African markets as number of users is quickly growing and more and more people seem to prefer MOBOfree to traditional classifieds companies,” added Alonso.