Imperial acquires ParcelNinja in major South African e-commerce deal

 ·23 Feb 2021

JSE-listed logistics company Imperial has announced that it has acquired specialised warehousing and distribution management business ParcelNinja.

In a shareholder statement published on Tuesday (23 February), Imperial said that the deal took effect from 1 February 2021.

“Enabled with leading software, processes and people capabilities in South Africa, ParcelNinja provides fulfilment in both B2C and B2B channels including the informal market, supported by the management and optimisation of courier parcel deliveries,” Imperial said.

“This acquisition supports Imperial’s strategic ambitions to accelerate our digital capabilities and expand our logistics and market access services into last mile distribution, e-commerce fulfilment, footprint and scale in Africa, while ensuring local relevance for our clients and principals.”

The group said that the ParcelNinja acquisition will provide specialised warehousing and distribution management in e-commerce, direct to consumers and to informal markets

ParcelNinja was founded in 2013 by Justin Drennan, Ryan Drennan, and Terence Murphy and it launched its first commercial services in October 2014.

It offers South African online shops an affordable outsourcing solution for all their fulfilment needs.

Imperial has also announced that its $20 million Imperial Innovation Fund now has five actively-managed portfolio companies:

  • Field Intelligence, a digital pharmaceutical distributor operating in Nigeria and Kenya.
  • Shypple, a digital freight forwarder operating between Asia and Europe.
  • RedBird, a provider of rapid diagnostic tests to pharmacies in Ghana.
  • Lori, a digital road freight exchange operating in East and West Africa that has also partnered with Imperial to launch in SADC during 2021.
  • An investment in a cross-border digital logistics service provider serving e-commerce merchants in MENA.

The Lori Systems deal was concluded in November 2020 which gives it access to cutting-edge e-logistics technology solutions across Africa.

Lori Systems is the leading e-logistics platform in Africa and co-ordinates haulage in frontier markets.

Imperial said its partnership with Lori Systems in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region will help to develop Africa’s road freight industry through digital innovation and enablement.

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