One Africa Media has been running some of the most prominent e-commerce platforms on the African continent. From Cheki, Buy Rent Kenya to Brighter Monday and others such as Jobberman & PrivateProperty Nigeria. Early this year, One Africa Media announced it will be merging operations with Ringer, that owns Expat-Dakar, Zoom Tanzania & Pigia Me.
In the recent weeks, there has been the announcement that One Africa Media is shutting its sites in various markets across Africa to focus on a few selected markets. Among those affected are Brighter Monday Rwanda and car classified site Cheki’s operations in Zambia and Zimbabwe.
According to BrighterMonday Kenya CEO Emmanuel Mutuma, the exit from the Rwandan market was meant to improve on the company’s technology offerings.” We had very small operations in Rwanda. In fact, all we had was a domain activated in that market and the model was pretty different as it was all free and supported by a team in Kenya,”he said. “Over that time, we have managed to understand the metrics, needs of the market and models that can work, and our focus will now shift towards improving the technology in that market and bring up to speed with the Kenyan, Ugandan and Tanzania operations,”he added.
On the technology side of things, Emmanuel says the goal for Brighter Monday is to match talent with opportunities, which is something they want to do better. ” For the job seeker, we want to offer them relevant opportunities and increase their chances of being hired. We have come up with better and improved algorithms to help us achieve that goal,”he said “With the employer, we want to make it easy for them to shortlist candidates by filtering the best candidates for them and we shall soon roll-out the first version of this capability soon,”he added. He did not, however, shed light on if this was the thinking behind Cheki’s decision to exit the market. In Zambia and Zimbabwe, Cheki ran no operations in both countries and instead had domains activated in both and operations ran from elsewhere.
Our guess is that following the merger, there has been a need to focus on already proven markets such as Kenya. With the continuous improvement of the technology, the platforms would then scale their learnings into newer markets with more chances of success, rather than focusing on fast expansion into new markets and making small or no winnings in that case.