Amazon makes forays into Egypt with a dedicated shopping platform – where next?
Is Amazon keen on making concrete forays into Africa? The American e-commerce and technology giant announced in July that it will set up an Amazon.eg website, according to Egyptian media. This will ensure that the company dedicates itself to its Egyptian vendors and buyers.
Since 2017 when it declared its presence in the cradle of civilization through its affiliate Souq.com, the Jeff Bezos founded company appears to be finally venturing into the last frontier.
What does an Amazon.eg platform mean?
Amazon has only been able to ship merchandise to a few African countries such as South Africa and Kenya. Even so, the products shipped originated from the USA and the shipping costs are usually massive.
A dedicated platform means that local merchants in Egypt will be able to access Amazon Seller Central. With a dedicated workforce in Egypt, Amazon will then deliver to any corner of the country. The company has been on the roll the whole of last year and this year employing both senior and junior staff in Egypt.
Merchants already on Souq.com can currently create accounts on Amazon Seller Central in preparation for the launch. The sellers will not only have the local market but the international market as well as they will be able to ship outside.
A warning to ground breakers.
Most e-commerce companies in Africa operate where they are domiciled, apart from Jumia, which was dubbed the Amazon of Africa. Now that Amazon itself is here, the warning bells should be ringing.
Jumia’s unprecedented success on the continent could have been watched keenly by the larger American company which has bigger money chests if it wanted to expand. Most of the original Jumia owners already sold their stakes in the company that has weathered the storm in probably one of the toughest e-commerce frontiers – one which pundits say holds a lot of potential.
After Egypt, where will Amazon go next? While it has not hinted to such an expansion on the continent, it is obvious that success in Egypt would only mean one thing. Kenya? Nigeria? South Africa?