African Unicorn Jumia Heads to Wall Street

By CultureBanx Team

  • Jumia set to IPO on the NYSE

  • The e-commerce platform raised about $770M and is valued at $1.2B

African e-commerce platform Jumia filed with the SEC to raise up to $100 million in an initial public offering. The tech unicorn has grown quickly but is burning through an equally high amount of cash in its quest to become the Amazon (AMZN +1.55%) and Alibaba (BABA +0.34%) of Africa.


Why This Matters: Some analysts think listing Jumia shares on the NYSE makes sense, but investor appetite is questionable considering the company's persistent financial losses in its core markets. Jumia has raised about $770 million from investors and is valued at $1.2 billion. However, at the end of 2018 the e-commerce firm loss $977 million.

There’s something perhaps mythical about the company, it counted over 4 million active consumers last year

There’s something perhaps mythical about the company, it counted 81,000 active merchants and over 4 million active consumers last year. The firm also has a proprietary payment service, JumiaPay, in markets like Nigeria and Egypt.

Last month reports surfaced that MTN, one of Jumia’s largest shareholders could be selling it in New York. This is a move the wireless carrier agreed to as part of a $1 billion regulatory fine in 2016. The IPO will give MTN the opportunity to sell about $600 million in shares towards clearing its debt.

What’s Next: The company plans to list on the NYSE under the symbol JMIA. Jumia did not state the timeline and share price for its offering.

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