South Africa is expected to spend about R63 billion online, according to Efi Dahan, General Manager for Russia, Turkey, Middle East & Africa at international online payment company, PayPal.

Dahan visited SA recently to deliver a keynote speech at this year’s Seamless Africa conference, held in Cape Town last week.

He told ITWeb Africa during an exclusive interview that the country is seeing massive growth in online purchases because many consumers are using mobile devices as wallets.

According to Dahan, South Africa leads the whole of Africa in online purchases, this is despite Nigeria being home to the most e-commerce ventures in Africa – 40%, according to the Afri-Shopping: Exploring the African E-commerce Start-up Ecosystem Report 2017 by Disrupt Africa.

Dahan said online payments in SA amounted to R37 billion only two years ago, “this is amazing growth and it will continue to grow.”

PayPal stated that more consumers in Sub-Saharan Africa are looking beyond their borders to source the products and services they need.

“In fact, according to a recent KPMG The Truth About Online Consumers 2018 Report, the African/Middle Eastern markets import 50% of all online purchases from other regions, making them the number one online importer worldwide,” PayPal states.

Dahan believes the continent’s e-commerce is growing much faster than a lot of mature markets.

“South Africa is one of the main markets, I think this is because of the mobile penetration happens much faster. Mobile is extremely important because people are starting to use their mobile phone not just to make calls or get WhatsApp messages or SMS; they use the mobile as a wallet,” said Dahan.

“This is the future because mobile is also more secure and payment platforms know more about the user’s behaviour.”

Dahan said the company operates in 50 countries across the continent, with SA, Kenya and Nigeria being the biggest.

Source: By Masibulele Lunika