Ringier Africa and One Africa Media (OAM) have agreed to merge their pan-African Classifieds assets to create and grow Africa’s largest classifieds group.
The joint venture deal officially launches Ringier One Africa Media (ROAM), which the companies say will become Africa’s classifieds leader.
Existing shareholders of both companies have committed to continue to significantly invest into the JV to build out its market leadership through some of the continent’s leading homegrown brands, including OAM’s Jobberman, Brighter Monday, Cheki, BuyRent Kenya, PrivateProperty Nigeria and Ringier Africa’s Expat-Dakar, ZoomTanzania and PigiaMe.
The joint venture further investment into its brands will enable synergies, improved user experience and much improved audience reach across six African countries in three strategic regions: Nigeria & Ghana in English-speaking West Africa; Kenya, Tanzania & Uganda in East Africa; and Senegal in French-speaking West Africa.
Ringier Africa brings extensive marketing and distribution capabilities to the mix, plus knowledge of horizontal classifieds in some of the continent’s biggest economies, while One Africa Media offers extensive knowledge about serving professional traders and companies with vertical classifieds in Africa, state-of-the art technology and a strong group of founders of its brands.
Additionally, One Africa Media is backed by US-based Tiger Global Management and SEEK, a leading employment classifieds group based out of Australia.
Leadership of the two classifieds companies will be joint, with OAM’s CEO Justin Clarke taking the role of Acting CEO for the new ROAM group.
Clarke says millions more Africans are coming online to connect and conduct commerce, predominantly via mobile.
"Ringier One Africa Media is strategically positioned to lead the marketplace’s double digit growth, covering both vertical - car, real estate and jobs - and horizontal classifieds businesses," Clarke says.
"We have been looking for the right strategic partner with a similar broad vision for classifieds in Africa and who has a deep understanding of how things work in this complex continent as well as the long term commitment to stay the distance in some very large but early stage markets.
"We have known Ringier Africa for many years as we have both pioneered these markets in parallel and are really excited to be joining hands at last. The synergies are huge and we fit so well together," Clarke says.
He adds One Africa Media has pioneered the vertical classifieds market in Africa and Ringier has built and grown some of the biggest horizontal marketplaces on the continent.
"We now have a clear, focused vision to operate and grow Sub Saharan Africa’s most innovative, expansive & profitable classifieds company together," he says.
Since it was founded in 2010 by Justin Clarke and the late Carey Eaton, One Africa Media has aggregated and grown Africa’s largest marketplaces in employment, auto and property.
Apart from the assets that form part of the deal, OAM is also a stakeholder in the South African-based Private Property South Africa and Safari Now. OAM’s largest investors and shareholders are Tiger Global Management and SEEK.
Ringier Africa, established in 2011, is the continent’s leading diversified digital media company - with a focus on content, classifieds, e-commerce and digital agencies.
In content it runs the leading West African news platforms Pulse (pulse.ng; pulse.com.gh) and its pan-African digital agency network is called Ringier Digital Marketing Ringier Digital Marketing (RDM).
In e-commerce, Ringier Africa recently announced the founding of the Ringier Africa Deals Group with partner Silvertree. Ringier Africa is fully owned by Ringier AG, Switzerland’s leading international media company.