Techloy has learned from a reliable source that MIH Internet Africa, the owners of Dealfish and Kalahari in Nigeria made an offer to acquire a stake in Nairalist, but was rejected by founder, Seun Osewa.
The deal, according to our source, would have fetched Nairalist close to $200,000 (about N30 million) last year. Our source also revealed that Osewa may have been offered about $1 million for the purchase of Nairaland, the largest online forum in Nigeria.
Yesterday, at the Pitch Monday event in Lagos, Dealfish’s Country Manager, Francis Ebuehi confirmed to me that MIH had talks with Nairalist founder, Seun Osewa at some point last year to acquire the classified site, but would not comment on details of why the deal went off.
Ebuehi further said that although Nairalist is no longer a threat to Dealfish, they’re now looking to gain more market share, while anticipating stronger competition from elsewhere.
Earlier this month, Osewa raised a red flag on his competitor’s increased popularity within the Nigerian online classifieds marketplace in a Twitter update where he asked the question: Has Dealfish finally managed to kill Nairalist?
Already, there are indications that Dealfish is now the most popular classified ads site in Nigeria in less than one year. The service provides more value to users, especially with their mobile website, and may have lured Nairalist users with their million-naira ad campaigns seen on Google ads across local and global sites, Youtube, and buses around Nigeria.
Dealfish is launching soon in Ghana where it already has strong competition such as Google Trader.