There are very strong indications that OLX, an online marketplace owned by Naspers, has shut down its offices in Nigeria, a move that indicates that Naspers is slowly moving its investments away from Africa.
Naspers are investors in MultiChoice — operators of the DStv and GOtv satellite televisions — and the recently acquired Konga.
According to a report on Innovation Village, staff in their offices have been informed on Tuesday, February 6, and are expected to fully move out by the end of March 2018.
OLX is a global classifieds platform with physical presence in nearly 40 countries.
Launched in Nigeria in 2012, OLX said it had more than three million sellers and buyers registered on its platform in 2015 and reported that items valued at N12.1tn were posted for sale on its website in 2016.
Speaking on the development, Techpoint quoted Sjoerd Nikkelen, the CEO of OLX, in Asia, Middle East, and Africa as saying that they will continue to operate remotely despite not having any physical presence:
“We made a difficult but important decision in Nigeria to consolidate our operations between some of our offices internationally.
Our marketplace will continue to operate here — uninterrupted — as it has since 2010, and we remain committed to the many people here who use our platform to buy and sell every month. We continue to be focused on constantly innovating to make sure that OLX remains the top classifieds platform in the country.
Of course, we are committed to helping our affected colleagues during this transition and have already offered them meaningful financial and other support. As we’ve expressed to them directly, we are extremely grateful for their many significant contributions to OLX’s success”.
Ghana and Kenya are rumoured to be the other two countries that have been affected by this new development, with only South Africa spared (for now).
It is obvious that Naspers is diverting its attention from Africa and moving it to countries in Asia, Eastern Europe and South America where they believe they will get better yield for their investments.