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Bringing Africa's Informal Retail Sector Online

A common feature of developing and emerging market economies, particularly in South East Asia, Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa, is informality.

Most of the retail commerce in Africa happens inside the huge African informal sector. Bringing the African informal sector online will be the real innovation in developing African e-commerce and not copying Alibaba, Groupon, eBay, Amazon or Amazon-style websites such as Konga and Jumia.

Suppliers (manufacturers, importers and distributors) will be able to offer lower prices and better values by eliminating virtually all the costs historically associated with the informal retail sector, including sales visits, fancy buildings, delivery, billing and accounts receivable. Suppliers will be able to run a tight operation with extremely low overheads, enabling them to pass on savings to their customers (consumers, retail, and trade customers).