Until you can master Fulfillment Center logistics (ship goods directly to end customers), your ecommerce operation will struggle. Today, companies like Konga are going hybrid – online and physical stores. That is the first phase towards the equilibrium which will be the omnichannel where immersive integration of supply chain and service will make customers agnostic of whether online or offline. Simply, you will have anywhere and anytime retail operation.
The key sentence is thus: “Our mid-term goal would see to the establishment of more stores across Nigeria”. Yes, the new Konga would be opening physical stores across Nigeria. Certainly, that is a great winning business model. Besides the money being in the physical space, having stores will reduce the marginal cost challenges associated with pure play ecommerce. The piece quoted me as it argued the brilliance of pursuing this hybrid commerce for Konga.
The new Konga understands this and is working to enter the race where the opportunities abound. With these stores, the new Konga will crash its marginal cost and that would help it to take advantages of the online elements to deepen its competitive capabilities in the physical. As it does this, Konga would become the most respected retail chain in Nigeria.
Yet, no Fulfillment Centers (FC) can win without great Distribution Centers, DC (ship goods to stores) for a nationwide operation. Investing in that requires moving into big logistics like the ones companies like Kobo360 do.
The fact is this: the pieces are emerging in Africa provided the players can work together! Yes, you can focus on your FC while the DC is outsourced. But that outsourced partner must be wholly integrated in your operations to have efficient supply chain framework.