Big news about Amazon’s South African marketplace

A reference to Amazon’s South African marketplace has been found in an Amazon support drop-down menu, according to a LinkedIn post from Prebo Digital CEO Timo Dinkelman.

Dinkelman shared a screenshot showing “Amazon.co.za” and “Amazon.com.ng” options in the drop-down.

“The wait and speculation is over! It’s confirmed that Amazon is coming to SA and Nigeria,” he states.

“See below screenshot where you can see available domains to request support on. Sellers will still have to wait to register.”

At the time of publication, Amazon.co.za redirected to Amazon.com.

MyBroadband reached out to Amazon for comment, but it had not responded publication time.

Options for “Amazon.co.za” and “Amazon.com.ng” found in an Amazon support drop-down menu

Earlier in August, Amazon was — and still is — hiring people to launch its marketplace in the country.

The international ecommerce giant is advertising over 300 jobs in South Africa, including two managerial positions relating to its “ZA marketplace”.

In June 2022, leaked documents revealed Amazon’s plans to expand to five new countries in Africa, South America, and Europe.

According to the documents, Amazon’s plan — codenamed “Project Fela” — is to launch its South African marketplace by early 2023.

Amazon reportedly also plans to launch its Fulfillment by Amazon service for third-party sellers and its Prime membership programme in the country.

The retailer will compete with Takealot, Everyshop, Makro, and other ecommerce platforms in the country.

Takealot CEO Mamongae Mahlare recently gave her thoughts on Amazon’s expected marketplace launch in South Africa, saying it is a “compliment” to Takealot and its customers.

“It’s a great compliment to Takealot and the people that have built this business to where it is today, and our customers in South Africa that have supported that growth,” she said.

Mamongae Mahlare, Takealot Group CEO

“It demonstrates that we have built something that has built an investment case good enough for global companies like Amazon to want to come here.”

Mahlare maintained that Naspers has invested in Takealot for the long run and held a long-term view of the company’s potential.

MyBroadband learnt that Amazon was shopping for warehouse space in South Africa in January 2022. However, the retail giant’s plans for the warehouses were not yet known.

Amazon is preparing to launch its local marketplace despite an uphill battle over its South African headquarters.

In July, developer Liesbeek Leisure Property Trust (LLPT) filed an affidavit in the Supreme Court of Appeal with a warning that Amazon is fed up with the delays to the R4.6-billion River Club multi-purpose complex in Cape Town.

Further delays to the River Club construction site would likely lead to the Amazon Development Centre (ADC) terminating its agreement, the affidavit from spokesperson and LLPT trustee James Tannenberger alleges.

“Any such delay would almost certainly see ADC terminating the development agreement and the lease agreements, as it would be entitled to do. Indeed, even a reduced delay of six months will result in termination by ADC,” it reads.

The construction project has faced several delays, and most recently, the Western Cape High Court ordered that construction at the site be halted to consult with groups representing indigenous people who say the site is sacred land.

It should be noted two different Khoisan groups have locked horns over the development.

While the Goringhaicona Khoena Council are opposed to the development, the First Nations Collective says they were consulted and had reached an agreement with LLPT that their heritage, history, and culture would be preserved on-site through various features.

LLPT has since applied for leave to appeal the ruling, but the High Court dismissed the application in May.


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Big news about Amazon’s South African marketplace