Online trading platform Afrikasokoni raised Sh62.5 million from foreign financiers in the past year to launch its operations in Kenya.
Africasokoni CEO Ebrima Fatty, marking the first anniversary, said he had hired 25 staff to man its Mombasa Road-based operational hub on a 24/7 basis thereby ensuring orders received are serviced on the same day within Nairobi and in 24 hours for upcountry orders.
“Maasai curio and Kariokor leather and textile products made the bulk of products we exported to China, US, Canada and Germany retailers who now enjoy a direct connection with Kenyan vendors. We realised a Sh14 million turnover and are profiling our customers and vendors with a view to building a database that we could use to grow our sales via targeted marketing,” he said.
Mr Fatty added that Kenyans living abroad now have a platform to buy and have the products delivered to their doorsteps in any country via the platform after they inked a partnership deal with several parcel delivery firms.
Director of Strategy Frederick Kirui said it had upgraded the platform to integrate desktop and mobile App into one making it easy for customers and vendors to interact on real-time.
The firm plans an East Africa-wide rollout by the end of the year which he said will open up intra-Africa trade where diaspora Africans can source for any products from home for use in their homes.
“We started off with 12 vendors but have since grown our base to 810 small and medium enterprises dealing in Kenyan made products from curios, locally made sandals, shoes among other fashion items.
“We also export raw coconut oil for making of various cosmetic products to China which has recorded double digit growth in the past months, ”he said.