MarketForce, a Kenyan startup that specializes in B2B financial and retail services, has widened its market base to include five more markets across Africa. The plan is to grow RejaReja, a MarketForce app that enables retailers to order and pay for goods, accept payments for utility bills, and access financing; RejaReja also allows manufacturers to find retailers for their products.
MarketForce has joined forces with Cellulant to foster the entry of RejaReja into the following markets: Ethiopia, Ghana, Tanzania, Rwanda, and Uganda. This is coming after a pilot launch in Nigeria about two months ago.
Cellulant, a pan-African payments company, will allow merchants to accept “locally relevant and alternative” payment options from buyers and as such will help the growth of RejaReja in the aforementioned markets.
Tesh Mbaabu, MarketForce co-founder and CEO, told TechCrunch; “We are working with Cellulant to open the new markets, and the reason is they already have a presence in these markets and have partnerships with both banks and billers. This will ensure that we focus on acquiring new merchants.”
Cellulant Chief Business Officer, David Waithaka noted that the partnership has been in the works for about six months and that Cellulant is delighted to extend their “fruitful relationship” with MarketForce. He further said that amplifying financial inclusion and incomes for merchants across Africa is the goal of this partnership.
Notably, Cellulant has a wide range of partnerships including 46 mobile money operators and 120 banks across Africa, it also serves 35 African countries and has physical spaces in 18 of those.
Mbaabu said that the company’s target is to grow RejaReja merchants to 1 million by the end of 2022. RejaReja was launched in December 2020 and has seen remarkable growth having over 87,000 orders made on the platform.
“In November we hit 100,000 merchants in Kenya and Nigeria and this number is growing quite rapidly. Currently, we are growing 40% month on month. This shows how strong our service is,” Mbaabu shared.