As the launch of Jumia’s Initial Public Offering (IPO) on the New York Stock Exchange (NYS) inches closer, there have been dozens of stories covering the impending milestone for “Africa’s largest eCommerce platform.”
However, before Jumia became an eCommerce giant, it started in 2012 as a Rocket Internet-backed startup with only a handful of employees trying to get Nigerians to buy stuff online.
“We started with five people in a very tiny room and now Jumia is shipping thousands of items all around the country,” Tunde Kehinde, former co-founder and managing director at Jumia said in an interview with Techpoint back in 2015.
Between 2012 when the company started and early 2013, it grew from five to about 50 people. Someone made a list of Jumia’s first 50 employees; we suspect it was Olaoluwa Samuel-Biyi, ex Jumia employee and Director, SureGroup.
It is interesting to note that all 50 of them have gone on to either hold senior management positions at the top of their fields or build their own companies.
Some of the popular names you may recognise are Tunde Kehinde and Ercin Eksin of Africa Courier Express (ACE) and Lidya, Onyeka Akumah of FarmCrowdy, Omobolanle Shodipo of the Africa Union and music superstar Adekunle Gold.
In all, 15 startups/companies came out from Jumia’s pioneering team. Here they are.
Founded by Chioma Ifeanyi-Eze, Accountinghub provides accounting and bookkeeping services as well as tax support for startups and small businesses.
Before joining Jumia in 2012 as Finance Manager, Chioma held finance-related roles at PwC and Capital PHB. Before taking the entrepreneurial route post-Jumia, Chioma Ifeanyi-Eze held senior finance management roles at eHealth Africa, Alduco ENergy LTD, Greater Washington Capital LTD and Greystone Partners LTD.
Evans Akanno founded Cregital in 2015 to change the way the average Nigerian feels about design. Cregital is a digital design company that specialises in branding, UI/UX design and web development.
After working as a Brand Marketing Specialist at Jumia for 10 months, Evans joined Konga as a creative specialist. During an Interview with Techpoint in 2015, Evans revealed that his time at Jumia and Konga helped him to understand how to create functional, curiosity-sparking designs that translate into profit.
Lidya is a financial services platform that grants individuals and Afican businesses access to loans using credit scoring algorithms. It was founded by ex Jumia executives Tunde Kehinde and Ercin Eksin in 2016.
Before Lidya, the dynamic duo teamed up to start Africa Courier Express (ACE), a logistics company born out of the need to bridge the gap in the Nigerian logistics market. At Jumia, Tunde Kehinde was the co-founder and Managing Director while Ercin was the chief operations officer (COO).
In 2014, Raphael Afaedor, former CEO and co-founder of Jumia and Gbolahan Fagbure, former director of operations, also at Jumia embarked on a journey to deliver groceries to all major parts of Lagos in as “early as three hours” through Supermart.
Supermart.ng is an online grocery delivery service that offers a wide variety of food, drinks, snacks, toiletries, and home supplies.
After working as the Creative Director – VP at Jumia Nigeria for a little over three years, Funmi St Matthew Daniel went on to start her own fashion brand named MiLa Modal.
One of the products of the MiLa Modal brand, The B&F Collective is a fashion and lifestyle blog that focuses on promoting African brands and representing Nigeria as the new destination for fashion and beauty.
Before joining Jumia in January 2013, Funmi worked at Exquisite Magazine and Tiffany Amber Nigeria, among other fashion brands.
In 2014, three former Jumia employees joined forces to start SureGifts, Nigeria’s pioneer eCommerce platform for gift cards.
Adeoye Ojo, Babafemi Lawal and Olaoluwa Samuel-Biyi are the co-founders of SureGroup, the parent company of SureGifts and SureRemit — a non-cash remittance platform and SureCredit — a voucher-styled credit financing platform for employees of selected companies.
Adeoye Ojo ended his career at Jumia as the Senior Marketing Analyst/ Business Intelligence (Marketing), Babafemi Lawal was the Head of Business Intelligence (Operations) while Olaoluwa Samuel-Biyi was the Head of Business Intelligence (Production and Purchasing).
Christopher’s and Co.
Christopher’s and Co. is a Lagos-based high street fashion brand. Founded by former Jumia Category Manager Ochije Nnani, it is a multi-channel retail outlet for men and women fashion items.
After Jumia, Ochije joined Konga as the Head of the fashion division, then worked as the VP, Fashion and Private Label and finally as the VP, Commercial, before leaving to start up his own company in July 2016.
All Shades Covered
Sanmi Ogunmola, formerly the Brand and Category Manager at Jumia Group is the cofounder and COO of All Shades Covered.
All Shades Covered is a UK-based online hair and beauty store for black women. Sanmi teamed up with another former Jumia employee Tommy Williams to start the company in 2016.
Kraks TV, Form Plus, Busha
While still at Jumia, Michael Adeyeri, former software engineer at the company built Formplus, a platform that helps users create online forms. In 2014, teaming up with Femi Bakre, he started Kraks TV, a platform for viral entertainment content.
In 2018, Michael and former Jumia IT support engineer Moyo Sodipo teamed up to build Busha, a platform that helps users buy, sell and manage their cryptocurrency portfolios.
PrepClass is an educational technology company that connects learners with skilled tutors. The startup was born out of Chukwuwezam Obanor and Olumide Ogunlana’s conviction that technology could be used to revamp Nigeria’s educational system.
Chukwuwezam now the CEO and co-founder of PrepClass was formerly an online marketing specialist at Jumia Nigeria. Before joining Jumia in 2012, Wezam worked as an intern at Google Africa and Ericsson.
Nigerian digital and crowdfunding agricultural platform Farmcrowdy was founded in 2016 by Onyeka Akumah, Ifeanyi Anazodo, Akindele Phillips, Jimoh Maiyegun, Tope Omotolani.
Onyeka Akumah, the company’s CEO was the former Director, Marketing and Partnerships at Jumia. After Jumia, he worked at GTBank, Konga and Travelbeta before starting FarmCrowdy.
Before Anthony Okeleke and Chidi Anyina founded Dambe Warriors, Dambe was just a traditional boxing sport associated with the Hausa people of West Africa. Dambe Warrior now promotes the sport by recasting it through YouTube and live events to a modern and global audience.
Anthony started his career at Jumia Nigeria in 2012 as the Sourcing Operations Lead and ended it in May 2017 as the Global Operations Development Manager for Jumia Services.
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New Report: Nigerian startups raised $24.7 million in Q2 2019, 40% higher than Q1. Find out more in the latest quarterly edition of the Nigerian Startup Funding Report here.