April 19, 2024

Stakeholder in the e-commerce industry, Akintunde Opawole, has said that Nigeria would need more e-commerce platforms to drive the digital economy agenda of the government and deepen competition in the e-commerce space.

Opawole, who is the co-founder of My Shop Launcher (MSL), a digital platform for small businesses, according to him, experience from the last Black Friday sales by the few e-commerce platforms in the country showed that many Nigerians wanted to buy online but the platforms could not meet the demands.

While noting that the market is big enough to accommodate more players, Opawale specifically emphasized the need for more local players. He noted that the e-commerce space in Nigeria is currently dominated by foreign players.

“During the last Black Friday, one of the major players in the market was doing millions of sales per minute. And that was one player, imagine what other players were doing. At that period, if you visit some of the e-commerce platforms, you would notice incidences of servers being down and some products you want to buy are already sold out. That was because a lot of people were buying from the few players available.

“So, the market is very big, and in a way, the majority of the current players are not solving local problems because they are international players. We need more local players who understand the local needs in the space.”

In addition, Opawole said the government would also need to empower the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria in terms of digital skills to be able to take their products and services online.

According to him, many of the SMEs in the country still lack the basic digital skills of putting their products online, thus a program targeted at empowering SMEs with basic digital skills would be ideal. In that regard, he said MSL recently introduced a no-code e-commerce storefront free of charge, which also reflects a genuine commitment to the welfare and growth of SMEs.

Founded two years ago, Opawole said MSL’s inception was rooted in the recognition of the struggles faced by African merchants managing their businesses manually.

According to a report by Mordor Intelligence, Nigeria’s E-commerce Market size is estimated at $8.53 billion in 2024, and is expected to reach $14.92 billion by 2029, growing at a CAGR of 11.82% during the forecast period (2024-2029).

The Nigerian e-commerce market has experienced significant growth in recent years, driven by increasing internet penetration, growing smartphone usage, and a rising middle class with disposable income.

Mobile devices play a crucial role in Nigeria’s e-commerce landscape. With the widespread adoption of smartphones, many Nigerians access the internet and engage in online shopping primarily through mobile devices.



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