Copia, a Kenyan e-commerce startup, has raised $2 million from Dutch impact investor Goodwell Investments as it seeks to expand in Kenya and other emerging rural markets across Africa and beyond.
The financing will see Goodwell Investments acquire an unknown equity share in Copia, which specialise in supplying products and services to currently underserved consumers in rural Kenya.
We are excited about our new investment in Copia! This ecommerce business provides huge benefit to people living in underserved rural communities. Ideal fit for our uMunthu fund. https://t.co/Df18JHYWz5 #impinv #fintech #dfs pic.twitter.com/35zusO95T2
— Goodwell Investments (@GoodwellInvest) January 21, 2019
Copia supplies products and services to “Base of the Pyramid” (BoP) consumers. Through a combination of technology, local agents, efficient delivery strategies, a broad and affordable product offering, and reliable services, Copia enables households to access goods that would otherwise be difficult to obtain without travelling to a major city. Pre-paid orders take on average only two to three days to be fulfilled.
“The company has a large and positive social impact in the rural communities it serves. It provides consumers with a wide choice of products at affordable prices via a business that is close to them and that they can trust to deliver quality,” said Goodwell in a statement.
The e-commerce platform enable rural Kenyans save Ksh150 in transport costs and an hour travel time per order is a huge benefit for people living on only a few dollars per day. Also, the goods people buy via Copia are the exact same top-10 items they spend most of their income on, so these savings matter.
Copia was launched in 2013 with 20 agents. It has shown dramatic growth over the past few years and now works with over 3,000 agents, counts some 40,000 customers, and executes over 80,000 orders a month.
Since 2015, the company’s revenues have grown significantly year after year. Even so, the growth potential for Copia remains huge as it currently covers around 28 per cent of Kenya and reaches only a minority of households in this area.
Looking further ahead, Copia’s total addressable market could comprise several emerging markets in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and Asia as well that represent a potential purchasing power of over $5 trillion a year.