Describes what a company needs to know to take advantage of e-commerce in the local market and covers prominent B2B websites.
While internet access levels in Angola are fairly high compared to other sub-Saharan countries, electronic commerce in Angola is limited as the country remains a predominantly cash-based economy with an unreliable mail delivery system.
Potential exists for eCommerce in Angola considering the strong base of internet users in Angola. Internet Live Stats for 2020 reports 8.5 million internet users, representing about 26.5 percent of the population (IWS). Most use mobile phones rather than home computers to access the internet; mobile broadband access is available to just 16 percent of the population.
The major limitation in eCommerce in Angola is the lack of use of credit cards or other internationally accepted payment mechanisms. Though having a bank account among adult Angolans is not unusual, access to international credit cards is extremely restricted. For domestic purchases, debit cards (Multicaixa) have become more common.
Domestic eCommerce (B2C) is not widespread in Angola, but it is slowly growing with the creation of several domestic e-Commerce websites. BayQi, Otchitanda, Roque Online and O Soba are some of the most popular and widely used eCommerce sites in Angola. Payments are made through domestic debit cards (Multicaixa), bank transfer and digital wallet and delivery is through local courier service since the mail delivery system is unreliable. Online taxi services include three main companies Kubinga, T’leva and Azimbora, with French start-up Heetch entering the market in late 2020. There are also two food delivery services such as Tupuca, Mamboo and Kumoxi, which serve the restaurant and consumer markets.
Given the Covid-19 pandemic and the emergency response measures, online purchasing of food, beverages, clothing, shoes, electronics and other accessories increased in the major Angolan cities.
Cross-border eCommerce is restricted to middle and upper income Angolans with access to international credit cards and international travel. Such purchases are made most often through major international online stores such as Amazon, Ebay (USA and Europe) and Alibaba (China). Deliveries are made through international couriers.
Some Angolans use international commercial consolidator services such as U.S. company MyUSA.com for multiple eCommerce purchases then save on transportation delivery costs.
Middle and upper income Angolans travel regularly to Portugal and South Africa where many have homes and extended family. It is common for them to make eCommerce purchases for delivery to family and friends in Portugal, and then after visiting Portugal bring the items back to Angola in their luggage.
A limited number of Angolan businesses use European or U.S. based B2B websites such as ebay.com and Amazon.com with products shipped to them in Angola by express courier.
Angolan intellectual property rights law does not specifically address eCommerce.
An Angola-specific online store selling Chinese products is Baobabay.com. The local version of international company OLX was a popular on-line direct sales platform in Angola but closed recently.
Approximately 50 percent of the adult population participates in the formal banking systems. Debit cards (Multicaixa) have become increasingly common for domestic purchases.
International credit cards are scarce and extremely restricted by commercial banks. For those with access, Visa and Mastercard are most commonly issued in Angola. Some consumers are beginning to use Paypal.
The Union Pay International card was officially launched in 2018. In Angola, UnionPay cards can be used in Point of Sales (POS) terminals with the UnionPay or the Banco Angolano de Investimentos (BAI) logos, while use at a limited number of ATM machines for cash withdrawals is available.
The majority of the Angolan population with internet access use a cellphone as their method of access. However, only 16 percent of the population have access to mobile broadband. Those using a laptop or a desktop to make online purchases normally use their cellphone or tablet as well.
Social media is widely used in Angola given the relatively high number of internet users in the country around 7.1 million and estimated over 22.3 percent of the population where the internet penetration stood at 28percent in January 2020. An estimated 2.2 million companies and individuals use Facebook for business promotion and personal communication and many companies promote themselves exclusively on Facebook or Instagram as an affordable and accessible on-line presence versus establishing and managing their own website.
Additional popular Angola-focused social media platforms such as the news site Club K and Angonoticias also provide advertising opportunities.