Naspers-owned OLX Group has announced that it’s sold its OLX horizontals in Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda to leading Nigerian horizontal Jiji.ng. The deal is still pending regulatory approval.
According to a media statement, OLX users in Nigeria will be redirected to Jiji.ng, but a visit to the site today still takes you to OLX Nigeria. Jiji is owned by the Ukrainian company Genesis. This deal is supported by its cornerstone investor Digital Spring Ventures.
Founded in Lagos in 2014, Jiji is Nigeria’s No.1 marketplace with around 4.6 million monthly visits, according to SimilarWeb. The site says it took just six months to clinch its market-leading position. “The consolidated audiences of Jiji and OLX will create a single user base of more than 8 million monthly unique users,” the company said.
Genesis CEO Vladimir Mnogoletniy said the company plans “to build the largest Africa-based classifieds business.” He believes that Jiji has the potential to become one of the top 10 classifieds sites in the world, in terms of traffic, within the next three years.
It’s not all that surprising to see OLX sell its African sites. The company consolidated its operations in Nigeria and Kenya — its two biggest African markets — in February last year. At the time, OLX Group spokesperson Ana Garcia said: “This is a business decision, carefully thought out to enable us to continue to provide the best services to our customers in Kenya and Nigeria.”
To reaffirm its faith in these markets, OLX then launched a progressive web app for users in Nigeria, South Africa, Ghana and Tanzania in April. “We are proud of our achievements in Africa,” GM of OLX in Africa, Middle East, and Asia Sjoerd Nikkelen said. He noted that OLX “continually” evaluates its classifieds portfolio to ensure “a disciplined approach” to capital and resource allocation.
It’s worth noting that the OLX Group has just closed its Nigerian recruitment vertical Careers24 Nigeria, mainly because of disagreements between Naspers and the local team about the future of the site.
This news comes a week after Naspers announced it would list its international internet assets — which include OLX Group — on the Euronext in Amsterdam during the second half of 2019.