SOUTH AFRICA – Takealot, South Africa’s largest online retailer, has launched 25 outlets in the country to boost the retailer’s operations and efficiencies.

Markedly, Takelaot opened its flagship pickup point at the New Road off-ramp in Midrand spans the N1, features a specialised spiral conveyor system to allow ease of access, reports Business Day.

“Establishing the Midrand collection facility at this location provides an added layer of convenience for our Gauteng customers.

“Ultimately we aim to convert around 10% of orders from the greater Johannesburg area to collections for Takealot and Superbalist,” said Kim Reid, chief executive at Takealot.

The Naspers-owned retailer said the points would allow shoppers to order online, pick up their products when it suits them from the various collection points, and drop off returns nationwide.

As with the world’s largest online retailer, Amazon, Takealot has built up a considerable logistics business.

“Takealot is first and foremost a retailer, however logistics are an integral part of the business and a key factor in its success,” Reid said.

“Through our in-house logistics network, the Takealot delivery team, we are able to deliver over 1.4-million deliveries each month in total, offering shoppers a fast and reliable service.

“Currently the Takealot delivery team and Takealot pickup points’ primary focus is servicing companies within the Takealot group brands,” Reid said. 

E-commerce in South Africa accounts for an estimated 1.4% of total retail sales, while developed markets in the US, Europe and China are on average at about 12%-15%.

Despite success on the continent of companies such as Jumia, the MTN-backed Nigerian e-commerce operator that listed on the New York Stock Exchange in April, Takealot has no plans to expand outside South Africa. 

“We believe there is still a large opportunity for the growth of e-commerce within SA,” Reid said. 

In June 2018, Naspers revealed that it had acquired Tiger Global Management’s stake in Takealot.

Currently, Naspers owns an effective 96% of the business (91% fully diluted) and has invested more than US$310.07 million (R4.5bn) in the online retailer to date.

The global consumer internet group has also invested in other firms including; Swiggy, iFood, Avito, OLX, Brainly, BYJU’S, Codecademy, eMAG, Honor, ibibo, letgo, Media24, Movile, PayU, SimilarWeb, and Udemy.