Internet group Naspers says its recent investments in South African e-commerce site, Takealot.com, will help to push the group towards profitability.
Naspers on Friday recorded strong financial results for the year to March 2017, increasing revenue by 19% year on year to US$14.6 billion.
The group said its e-commerce revenue climbed 11% to $2.929 billion.
In April, Naspers announced a R960-million cash injection into Takealot.com, making it the majority shareholder of the e-commerce company.
It followed a R716 million investment into Takealot.com in 2015 which boasts a stable of businesses including Superbalist.com; Mr D Food, South Africa’s largest restaurant food delivery service; and Mr D Courier, its point-to-point courier service.
In a conference call to analysts earlier this week, Naspers CFO, Basil Sgourdos said: “The Takealot investments should enable Takealot to move towards profitability. We expect Takealot to accelerate revenue growth and we’ll also see improvement in new unit economics and profitability in the years to come.”
Takealot CEO Kim Reid told MyBroadband in May 2017 that the R960 million would take the company to a number that will get it to cash flow break-even and beyond.
Naspers CEO, Bob van Dijk meanwhile told analysts that he expects the online food delivery sector “to grow very substantially” in the group’s core focused markets.
He highlighted the group’s successful investment in iFood in Brazil and Mexico.
In May, Naspers announced that it led an $80 million Series E investment in Swiggy, an online food ordering and delivery platform in India, while the Naspers-backed food ordering service, Delivery Hero, is preparing to list on the Frankfurt stock exchange in the next few months to fund its expansion.