By Nkiruka Nnorom
Africa’s e-commerce market could grow by more than $14.5 billion between 2025 and 2030 by increasing the number of women selling online, according to a report by the International Monetary Finance, IFC.
The report finds this can also be achieved by providing women-owned businesses with better training and financial support to help them match sales made by men.
The report, Women and e-commerce in Africa, found that Covid-19 has accelerated the growth of e-commerce and digital entrepreneurship in Africa and that more women have embraced digital business. However, it also noted that more can be done to promote women’s entrepreneurship and help women overcome e-commerce challenges.
Women could also strengthen their businesses by taking advantage of emerging fintech offerings, such as in-platform loans, which women currently access at much lower rates than men. The report leveraged data from leading e-commerce firm, Jumia, as well as from surveys of vendors in Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya and Nigeria.
“E-commerce in Africa is thriving, yet we are already seeing a widening gender gap in the sector. IFC’s report not only highlights the gap, but also shows how it might be addressed so that women entrepreneurs can succeed in this important and rapidly growing marketplace,” said Sérgio Pimenta, IFC’s Vice-President for Middle East and Africa.
Juliet Anammah, chairwoman, Jumia Nigeria and Group Head of Institutional Affairs, said: “It is absolutely essential for women to be factored in, given the future of e-commerce. Africa is just at the start of its e-commerce growth trajectory.”