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JPMorgan Predicts That Amazon Will Overtake Walmart As The Largest U.S. Retailer In 2022

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Walmart and Amazon- Investors King

Amazon is on track to overtake Walmart as the largest U.S. retailer in 2022, according to JPMorgan research released Friday.

Amazon’s U.S. retail business is the “fastest-growing at scale,” according to the company’s analysts. Between 2014 and 2020, Amazon’s U.S. gross merchandise volume, or GMV — a closely watched industry metric used to measure the total value of goods sold over a certain time period — has grown “significantly faster” than both U.S. adjusted retail sales and U.S. e-commerce, the analysts said.

Neither Amazon nor Walmart break out GMV in their quarterly earnings results, but JPMorgan estimates Amazon’s GMV is growing faster than its largest retail competitor. JPMorgan analysts said Amazon’s GMV in 2020 climbed 41 percent year over year to $316 billion, while Walmart’s GMV is estimated to have grown 10 percent year over year to $439 billion in 2020.

“Based on current estimates, we believe Amazon could surpass Walmart to become the largest U.S. retailer in 2022,” J.P. Morgan analysts Christopher Horvers and Doug Anmuth wrote Friday.

Horvers and Anmuth highlighted a few factors they believe are driving Amazon’s top-line growth, including an expansion into “large and under-penetrated categories” such as grocery and apparel, strong growth of third-party seller sales and the “Prime flywheel.” Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said in April the company now has more than 200 million Prime subscribers, up from 150 million at the beginning of 2020.

The coronavirus pandemic rapidly accelerated the adoption of e-commerce and cemented Amazon’s dominance in the retail space. Stuck-at-home consumers turned to Amazon for a plethora of goods ranging from toilet paper to workout gear. They also relied on Amazon for services they might not have otherwise considered, such as online grocery delivery.

Amazon’s pandemic-fueled sales surge has helped it grow its slice of the e-commerce market. JPMorgan estimates Amazon expanded its share of the U.S. e-commerce market to 39 percent in 2020, up from 24 percent in 2014.

The accelerated adoption of e-commerce has also provided a lift to other areas of Amazon’s business.

Amazon is on track to “become one of the largest delivery companies” in the U.S., analysts at Bank of America wrote in research published Tuesday.

Amazon is estimated to deliver 7 billion packages in 2021, surpassing the roughly 6 billion packages UPS is expected to deliver in the U.S. this year, the analysts wrote, citing figures from MWPVL International, a supply chain and logistics consulting firm.

In recent years, Amazon has quietly built a shipping operation that rivals the likes of UPS, FedEx and the U.S. Postal Service. It maintains an ever-increasing network of warehouses and last-mile delivery stations, and a sprawling logistics operation with airplanes, trucks and vans.

This has allowed Amazon to deliver most of its own orders. Amazon currently delivers packages for other businesses in the U.K. and could one day expand that service to the U.S.

MWPVL estimates Amazon handled about 5 billion of the 7.35 billion packages it shipped in 2020. UPS and USPS handled the other 1.25 billion and 1.1 billion, respectively, according to Bank of America analysts.

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Jumia Shares Triple in 2024 Amid Strong Q1 Performance

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Shares of African e-commerce giant Jumia (JMIA) surged to $8.67 on Monday, a significant milestone in the company’s remarkable recovery this year.

This price represents the highest the stock traded in 2024, starting at a modest $3.36. The gain highlights investor confidence following the company’s strong Q1 2024 results.

Despite not yet achieving a unicorn valuation, Jumia’s market capitalization has climbed to an impressive $872 million.

This turnaround is primarily attributed to the company’s strategic shift under the leadership of CEO Francis Dufay, who took over in 2023.

Dufay has focused on cost-cutting measures and driving revenue growth, a departure from Jumia’s previous struggles with profitability.

In Q1 2024, Jumia reported a 70% reduction in losses, thanks to significant cuts in advertising and sales expenses. Meanwhile, the company saw an 18.5% increase in revenue.

These results are particularly noteworthy given the economic challenges in some of Jumia’s major markets, including high inflation and currency devaluation.

“The impressive Q1 results have renewed investor confidence,” said an industry analyst. “Jumia’s ability to cut costs while growing revenue in such a challenging environment is a testament to their strategic realignment.”

Dufay’s leadership has been pivotal in this transformation. He has made bold moves, including shutting down the loss-making Jumia Food vertical and relocating UAE-based executives to Jumia’s key markets.

Also, the launch of a new 30,000 square meter integrated warehouse in Lagos has enhanced Jumia’s logistics capabilities, reducing delivery times and improving customer satisfaction.

“The shift in business model and operational focus is showing positive results,” commented Dufay. “We are committed to sustaining this growth trajectory and building a robust, profitable business.”

Jumia’s stock performance has drawn positive reactions from investors, particularly given the broader economic challenges in Africa.

The company’s turnaround is seen as a promising sign, especially as competitors like Amazon begin to make inroads into the African market with their launch in South Africa.

Jumia’s initial public offering in 2019, listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) at $14.50 per share, generated significant excitement.

However, the subsequent years were marked by fluctuating share prices and ongoing struggles with profitability. The recent surge in share price reflects a renewed optimism about Jumia’s future under Dufay’s leadership.

As Jumia continues to navigate the complexities of the African e-commerce landscape, it remains focused on achieving sustainable growth and profitability. The recent stock surge is a clear indication that investors believe in the company’s potential to thrive in a competitive market.

“Jumia’s journey has been challenging, but our commitment to innovation and operational excellence is unwavering,” Dufay stated. “We are excited about the opportunities ahead and remain focused on delivering value to our shareholders and customers.”

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Jumia Plans Warehouse Consolidation in Lagos Amid Nigeria Focus

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Jumia Technologies AG, the Nasdaq-listed e-commerce giant, has unveiled plans to consolidate its warehouses in Nigeria.

This decision is part of the company’s broader strategy to prioritize Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation as it endeavors to turn profitable amidst challenging market conditions.

The consolidation initiative will see Jumia merging its three existing warehouses in Nigeria into a single expansive depot spanning 30,000 square meters, strategically located in Lagos.

Francis Dufay, CEO of Jumia, emphasized the cost-cutting benefits associated with this move, highlighting the company’s commitment to optimizing its operational efficiency.

Speaking about the rationale behind the consolidation, Dufay expressed confidence in Nigeria’s potential to provide Jumia with the scale needed to achieve profitability.

Despite facing headwinds such as currency fluctuations and a challenging economic environment, Jumia views Nigeria as a key market for growth, anticipating positive developments in the medium term.

Jumia’s decision to streamline its operations in Nigeria comes against the backdrop of its ongoing efforts to navigate the complexities of the e-commerce landscape.

Despite reporting an operating loss of $8.33 million in the first quarter of the year, the company remains optimistic about its prospects in Nigeria, where it continues to witness steady revenue growth.

The e-commerce giant’s commitment to Nigeria underscores its long-term vision and determination to succeed in the region.

With plans to expand its footprint to additional cities across the country, Jumia aims to capitalize on Nigeria’s vast market potential and consumer demand.

However, Jumia’s journey to profitability in Nigeria is not without its challenges. The country’s economic landscape has been marred by currency devaluations, infrastructural deficiencies, and logistical hurdles.

Yet, amidst these obstacles, Jumia remains resilient, banking on Nigeria’s economic revival efforts and policy reforms to fuel its growth trajectory.

As part of its strategy to adapt to evolving market dynamics, Jumia has introduced innovative initiatives such as buy-now-pay-later financing options to cater to customers grappling with rising prices.

Also, the company remains vigilant in monitoring pricing dynamics, ensuring competitive pricing to meet the needs of price-conscious consumers.

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Alibaba Eyes Gulf Expansion, Seeks Partnerships in Saudi and UAE Markets

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Alibaba CEO Jack Ma gestures as he is introduced to participate in a panel discussion at the APEC CEO Summit in Manila

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., the prominent Chinese e-commerce giant, is actively pursuing expansion into the Gulf region, notably in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Alibaba’s president, Michael Evans, revealed the company’s strategy during a panel discussion at Dubai’s World Government Summit, highlighting a commitment to local partnerships as a key aspect of their approach.

Evans underscored Alibaba’s recent endeavors in Saudi Arabia, indicating a concerted effort to deepen its presence in the region’s burgeoning e-commerce landscape.

The move signifies Alibaba’s strategic pivot towards collaborative ventures following a period of strategic realignment prompted by government scrutiny and leadership changes.

The Gulf’s growing ties with China, driven by mutual economic interests and investment diversification initiatives, present an opportune moment for Alibaba’s expansion efforts.

However, geopolitical complexities, including heightened US scrutiny of China-linked entities, add a layer of challenge to Alibaba’s Gulf aspirations.

As Alibaba seeks to reclaim its leadership position in the global tech industry, the pursuit of partnerships in Saudi Arabia and the UAE underscores the company’s adaptive approach to international expansion.

The success of these ventures could potentially reshape the Gulf’s e-commerce landscape and deepen economic ties between the region and China.

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