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Sabi Opens an Office in Johannesburg to Enable the Digital Transformation of South Africa’s ZAR 157 Billion Informal Economy

South Africa’s micro, small and medium-sized traders can now improve their cash flow with more reliable supply chains and better customer marketing using Sabi, Africa’s leading B2B platform for goods and services distribution. SABI is partnering with Vumele to enable and empower South Africa’s informal economy. Sabi recently opened an office in Johannesburg and already has offices in Nigeria and Kenya.
South Africa’s informal economy includes over 200,000 spaza shops and spazarettes, 100,000 Kasi Kos traders & taverns, and 500,000 street hawkers & table top traders – mostly small businesses. Valued at over ZAR 157 billion, they supply basic needs including food and clothing while employing around 30% of the country’s population. South Africa is a key market in Sub-Saharan Africa’s $800 billion informal trade economy, which is made up of over 56 million micro, small and medium-sized businesses, most operating offline with little or no exposure to the formalised, digital economy – an issue that Sabi is solving across the continent.
Vumele uses its technology platform to provide informal merchants with access to supplies, logistics, business tools, payment processing, and financial services. The platform enables businesses to reach the right suppliers, get sector-specific middle agents and increase their customer reach in hours rather than months.
“Sabi has given me the opportunity to sell more, my customers keep coming back because now they know I always have what they want” – Mr Dami Gbadamosi
“I have been able to increase my stock and better serve my customers using Sabi’s no capital loan financing” – BeeKay Stores
Founded in 2021 in Nigeria, Sabi has grown into the largest commercial services platform for Africa’s informal economy, with a $500m annualised Gross Merchandise Value (GMV – or total volume of sales) as of July 2022. Two hundred thousand traders and ten thousand agents, mostly low-income earners or traders without access to traditional business or financial services, in Africa already use the platform via the Sabi app.
Anu Adasolum, CEO and Co-Founder, Sabi said: “Sabi’s technology creates a cost-effective bridge that enables informal traders to reach the right suppliers in a way that boosts net benefits for everyone involved in the value chain.
“We are excited to partner with Vumele in becoming the ecosystem for South Africa’s informal economy of small buyers, sellers and agents. These hard-working people are an often-neglected group across Africa that provides employment, food and other basic needs for more than 70% of the continent’s population.”
Businesses using Sabi can also access customised features in the Sabi App to house an e-commerce shop (Merch Buy), buy inventory features, get credit loans and track their business performance. The app also has a unique feature, “My Shop” that enables traders to track sales of consumers who buy from their stores to ensure more effective service delivery.
Sabi Milestones:
● $500m annualised GMV as of July 2022
● Over 200,000 merchants across Africa
● Over 10,000 agents across Africa

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