Jumia Technologies AG (NYSE: JMIA) announced today its financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2022.
“We kicked off 2022 with very strong growth momentum, closing the first quarter with the highest GMV and Order growth rates of the past 9 quarters, up 27% and 40% year-over-year respectively. In parallel with accelerating usage growth, we continued driving platform monetization, with revenue growing by 44% year- over-year, which was also a 9-quarter high,” commented Jeremy Hodara and Sacha Poignonnec, Co-Chief Executive Officers of Jumia.
“We remain focused on taking the business forward on our path to profitability, driving faster usage growth with improved levels of marketing efficiency. Sales & Advertising expense per Order and as % of GMV decreased sequentially, both reaching their lowest levels in the past 4 quarters, at $2.0 per Order and 7.5% of GMV respectively. We are executing on our strategy with discipline and consistency. Our focus continues to be on making Jumia a compelling destination for the everyday needs of African consumers and a growth engine for sellers and businesses in Africa and beyond.”
First Quarter 2022 – Business Highlights
Growth Acceleration Initiatives
In the first quarter of 2022, we continued executing on our growth acceleration strategy building upon the momentum of the second half of 2021, continuing to scale the business towards profitability.
The key levers of our growth acceleration plan remain consistent:
- Sustained marketing investments on a multi-channel basis, to drive consumer awareness, adoption and retention.
- Enhanced assortment relevance with a focus on everyday product categories.
- Improved pricing and shipping policy.
- Improved customer experience and convenience through platform enhancements.
We have outlined below relevant developments in the first quarter of 2022 with respect to each one of these levers.
• Brand awareness and consideration are core pillars of our marketing strategy and key to foster customer trust. We were pleased to see Jumia ranked #6 in the 2021 Most Influential Brands survey in Egypt released by Ipsos in March 2022. The ‘Most Influential Brands Survey’ is a global Ipsos initiative, covering 14 markets and close to 800 brands worldwide.
2021 was the second edition of the survey in Egypt with 118 brands assessed across 14 categories.
In 2021, Jumia progressed from the 7th to the 6th position of the ranking, maintaining its leadership within the digital and e-commerce category of the survey.
Assortment, pricing and shipping
As part of our efforts to become the digital destination in Africa for everyday needs, we are expanding our assortment in the everyday categories and further enhancing our partnerships with sellers and brands.
Between December 31, 2021 and March 31, 2022, we added almost one million SKUs in the FMCG category, the highest number of SKU adds in this category in the past 8 quarters.
We also established pan-African partnerships with each of Coca-Cola and Danone across both our e-commerce and food delivery platforms.
Price competitiveness is a key component of the Jumia value proposition for consumers, particularly in a more challenging macro environment that drives increased consumer price sensitivity.
We are upgrading our price benchmarking tool into an automated system covering the full product assortment of Jumia, incorporating data from both online and offline channel checks.
The new system leverages machine learning algorithms to match images and product features enhancing the speed and accuracy of screening and matching. It also allows for real-time price adjustment with dedicated modules for margin optimization.
We are rolling out a free shipping program in select countries allowing consumers living in the main cities to benefit from next-day free shipping on Jumia Express items and basket sizes exceeding a minimum threshold.
Jumia Express is an end-to-end logistics service provided to sellers where items are stored in our warehouse and picked and packed by Jumia. We expect the free shipping initiative to drive consumer adoption and overall usage growth.
While we will be foregoing consumer shipping fees – booked under Fulfillment revenue – we expect to better monetize the Jumia Express service – booked under Value Added Service revenue – as we expect sellers to benefit from sales uplift as a result of the free shipping roll-out.
Technology: Platform enhancements
We continue to invest in our technology backbone and front-end projects in particular, to make our platforms even more easy-to-use and engaging.
During the first quarter of 2022, we continued working on an overhaul of our homepage and product pages to simplify navigation and product discovery.
Key developments included creating stronger hierarchy of content on the homepage and more informative product pages with larger pictures and additional information such as available stock quantity for flash sales and promotions. We intend to further enhance user experience with incremental improvements to our product search algorithms and filtering modules, while increasing personalization throughout the stages of the user journey.
In April 2022, JumiaPay was granted the Payment Service Solution Provider (“PSSP”) license by the Central Bank of Nigeria, which allows us to process payments on behalf of third-party businesses in Nigeria.
In parallel, we continued expanding the range of everyday digital and financial services available to consumers on the JumiaPay app.
In Nigeria, JumiaPay is working with the CGAP, Consultative Group to Assist the Poor, which is a global partnership of more than 30 leading development organizations, focused on financial inclusion to improve the lives of lower income populations.
As part of this partnership, Jumia is piloting an e-doctor service on the JumiaPay app in collaboration with a third-party service provider, “Meeting Doctors”.
The objective of this service is to help workers, sellers and consumers in general access doctors remotely for a monthly subscription fee of around $1. The experiment will help validate the value delivered to our customers and workers and identify a sustainable model to achieve this.
Logistics services to third parties
• We are making significant progress on the roll-out of our logistics services to third parties. Packages shipped during the first quarter of 2022 reached a new record of 3.5 million, on behalf of over 1,250 clients, an increase of more than 200 clients compared to the fourth quarter of 2021.
Our advertising activity experienced strong momentum during the first quarter of 2022, with 484 advertising campaigns, up 55% year-over-year, on behalf of almost 9,000 advertising clients, a 24% year-over-year increase. Advertising clients during the quarter included high profile brand partners such as Unilever, L’Oréal, Adidas, Danone, Xiaomi, Coca-Cola, Krispy Kreme, Burger King and many more.
We are constantly improving the efficiency of our campaigns to enhance the returns on investment for our advertising clients, through better audience targeting, enhanced personalization and campaign management tools. As a result, advertising campaign performance, measured by the click-through rate on our ads, increased by 56% year-over-year in the first quarter of 2022, supporting sales and return on ad spend for our advertisers.
Earlier in May 2022, we launched our inaugural ESG report highlighting our sustainability strategy and key themes in alignment with the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (“SASB”) and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (“UN SDGs”).
The first edition of this report has been designed as an overview of our sustainability strategy with a mapping of our current sustainability practices.
Our sustainability strategy is fully aligned with our corporate mission and has three main objectives:
– Living our mission: Our mission to “leverage technology to improve everyday lives” holds sustainability at its core. As we execute on this mission, we create jobs, reduce inequality and positively impact our communities.
– Embedding sustainability in our business operations: We aim to make business decisions and conduct our operations with sustainability guidelines and objectives in mind.
– Amplifying our impact through our ecosystem: Our impact is further amplified as we expand our sustainability practices to our ecosystem of partners and stakeholders.
Our sustainability practices today can be grouped under five material themes outlined below.
These themes have been developed in line with our understanding of how our business impacts our key stakeholder groups: consumers, partners, employees, investors and our communities.
1. Minimizing environmental impact through the reduction of carbon emissions, waste and offering customers pre-owned and refurbished goods.
- Social Providing convenience, accessibility and affordability to consumers.
- Empowering sellers, partners, and communities by lowering the barriers to entry, providing training, access to funding and participating in initiatives to drive economic and social development.
- Building an engaged, inclusive, and diverse workforce.