The internet has transformed virtually every industry worldwide and has provided an avenue for businesses that otherwise wouldn’t have been possible to thrive easily. The automotive industry isn’t left out and auto dealers have recognized the opportunity apparent in marketing, buying and selling of motor vehicles online.
Online Car dealership, Africar Group, the first vehicle marketplace in Africa, offering the perfect platform for hundreds of millions of users to sell and buy cars, trucks and motorbikes online recently started operations in 12 African countries – Burkina Faso, Benin, Ethiopia, Malawi, Mali, Namibia, Rwanda, Somalia, Swaziland, Chad, Uganda, and Zambia.
Africar Group aims to connect local sellers with local buyers (individuals and businesses), and increase the volume and sales as well as decreasing commissions and selling times.
The company has already secured an undisclosed seed round with Australian and European business, Angel Investors, with which the company plans to build their teams and gain some traction around the car classifieds in Africa.
According to them, the countries they are investing are those with low competition in the car classifieds websites industry.
This begs the question on why Nigeria was excluded from the list of countries they are investing in. The Nigerian online car sales market is incredibly competitive.
Although there are more than 20 companies offering similar services with Africar Group, Africar Group would have been the first car classifieds network in the country that allows users to trade vehicles with users from neighboring countries.
Some of the sites such as Jiji.ng, Auctionexport.com, Cheki.com.ng, Car.jumia.com.ng, Nigeriacarmart.com, Efritin.com, Mobofree.com, olx.com.ng, Carmudi.com.ng, Nigeriacardealers.com, Affordablecarsng.com already in the business do not offer this service yet.
A site like cheki.com.ng for example provides a platform for Nigerian importers, car dealers, and private sellers to show their auto products to potential customers, while Carmudi.com.ng helps provide customers with valuable information that helps when it comes to making purchase decisions.
However, what would be interesting to see is if Africar decides to come into Nigeria or if Nigerian companies attempt to replicate what Africar Group does by being the first car classifieds network on the continent, allowing users to trade vehicles with users from neighboring countries, in the next 2 years.