French insurance giant buys into African ecommerce in $83m deal

French insurance giant AXA has bought an eight percent stake in Africa Internet Group (AIG), one of the continent’s largest ecommerce players. The deal is valued at €75-million (over US$83-million).

According to Forbes, AXA will become the exclusive insurance provider for AIG, which includes the Nigerian-based Jumia and other ecommerce operations in Africa.

Other AIG services include Kaymu, a leading online shopping community, as well as marketplaces in food delivery, travel, real estate, jobs and cars.

Read more: Kenyan Hellofood users can now order KFC, Ocean Basket online

“Internet is creating unparalleled opportunities for consumers and businesses in Africa to connect and do business in a new way. We continue to be very excited about the growth prospects of Jumia and this new partnership will enable us to capture them,” said Sacha Poignonnec and Jeremy Hodara, founders and co-CEOs of Jumia and AIG.

“We expect Africa’s ecommerce and online businesses to develop rapidly as a result of the strong growth of the middle class coupled with the increasing mobile phone and internet penetration,” they added.

Read more: Why Africa’s ‘largest retailer’ Jumia calls itself a startup

“Africa is home to some of the most dynamic and promising insurance markets in the world and our partnership with Africa Internet Group will enable us to accelerate materially our development by having access to their rich customer base and to their state-of-the-art ecommerce technology,” said AXA CEO Denis Duverne.

AXA joins AIG shareholders MTN, Millicom and Rocket Internet.

Jacques Coetzee: Staff Reporter


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