Ports operator DP World launches a new ecommerce platform in East Africa

Dubai-based DP World, the ports operator with operations in Senegal, Egypt, Mozambique, Somaliland, Rwanda, Algeria and DRC, has launched a new e-commerce platform in East Africa. The platform, called Dubuy,  allows vendors to connect with buyers in African markets. The delivery is then organised via DP World and its logistics partners.

Dubuy currently operates in Rwanda. It is due to be launched in Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda. Dubuy is planned to cover half of Africa by the end of 2023 and the entire continent within four years. DP World is offering guaranteed shipping dates to encourage consumers to sign up.

The platform is linked to vendors in Dubai. Dubuy is partnering with mobile operators to facilitate digital wallet payments. The headcount is small at present. 25 DP World employees are developing the platform.

In theory, it sounds like Dubuy should compete directly against DHL’s Africa eShop, which covers 35 countries in Africa, or Jumia.

In practice, the site looks more like an African version of Alibaba. The focus is more on business to business sales: connecting Chinese, Indian and Dubai-based vendors with wholesalers and retailers in African markets.