Efritin was launched in 2015 with a 100-strong staff strength. The site also reported having signed up a whopping 128,000 listings in three weeks.
For better understanding, Efritin operates in the same space as OLX. They are both online classifieds services and most users sell used items on both.
The Angel Of D’Efritin?
Online classifieds marketplace, Efritin has finally shut down fully with the closure of their website. The startup had begun to sell off its assets and shut down physical operations back in January of this year.
Before the January 2017 event, the company had been dogged by reports of former marketing manager, Uche Ajene, accusing the company’s former MD, Zakaria Hersi, of misappropriation of funds. This mismanagement, according to reports, led to inability to raise more funds for operations. Some have suggested that this, along with a number legal suits facing the company, was what sounded the death knell for Efritin.
Saltside’s Official Position
However, in an ITWeb interview, Nils Hammar, CEO of Saltside, owners of Efritin, however stated that the lack of returns on investments in the startup was what led to the shutting down of operations.
Nil specifically pointed at the problem of addressable internet market in Nigeria:
To me, I think the data cost in Nigeria is very high. In comparison to other parts of West Africa, Africa and the rest of the world, it is very expensive to use the internet for the vast majority of the people. It is very difficult for ecommerce and classifieds because they are quite late in the evolution of the internet industry. I think what needs to happen in Nigeria – but unfortunately we don’t see signs of that at all, instead we see the opposite – what needs to happen is that data cost for regular users has to radically drop. All the ecommerce platforms – Konga and Jumia, and the classifieds like Olx are all struggling partly because of this. I still think if you look at Nigeria, there is still a lot of potential, eventually and in the long run, it is one of the biggest opportunities in the world.
In the interview, Nils Hammar declined to comment on the allegations of mismanagement and law suits.
Efritin Is Dead
As at press time, the startup left this short message on the closed website:
Efritin has left the building
It’s been a pleasure serving you all over the years, but we have now decided to close down the shop and go home. A big thanks to everyone for the support, and who knows – we might meet again.
Finally, Efritin is resting in peace. Dust to dust. Ashes to ashes.