Rocket Internet has made a major move ahead of its upcoming IPO in Germany after announcing that it will merge five of its global e-commerce services into one single business.
Dafiti (Latin America), Jabong (India), Lamoda (Russia and CIS), Namshi (Middle East) and Zalora (Southeast Asia and Australia) will henceforth be known as GFG. The business will cover five continents, but Rocket Internet says that it will maintain separate inventories, business models and other tweaks within each market.
This move — which I have to say I saw coming when I predicted it earlier this year — gives the entity vast scale geographically and in terms of business overnight. Rocket Internet says that GFG has some 4.6 million active customers, and counts more than 7,000 employees worldwide. Though it isn’t present in the US market, GFG has, at first glance, potentially greater global reach than Amazon and other leading online retailers — albeit that e-commerce is still nascent in many of these markets.
Rocket Internet is widely reported as being on the cusp of a public listing in its native Germany. Its recent investment activity has certainty hinted as much — over the past month, the incubator sold a 10 percent stake to PLTD, and a 10.7 percent share to United Internet, while long-time investor Holtzbrinck swapped its investment in seven Rocket Internet startups for a 2.5 percent share in the main company.
A Rocket Internet spokesperson declined to comment when we reached out for further information about this news.
Image via NASA Goddard Space Flight Center / Flickr