Gumtree acquired by Impresa Capital
South African online classifieds platform Gumtree has been acquired by Impresa Capital, a Durban-based venture capital firm, for an undisclosed sum, with the deal pending regulatory approval.
Gumtree was launched in 2004 and is one of the most visited locally published sites in the country with approximately 4 million unique visitors and 71 million page views.
Originally acquired by eBay in May 2005, Impresa Capital’s acquisition of Gumtree from Adevinta, a Norwegian online classifieds specialist which acquired eBay last year, marks the first time in 18 years that the small business platform online ads will be owned by South Africans.
Speaking on the acquisition, Sean Bergsma, CEO of Ignition Group (which is majority owned by acquirer Impresa Capital and is one of Africa’s largest investors in technology, media, telecoms and financial services) said the sale represents an opportunity to expand the Gumtree platform with new products and services that will benefit Gumtree customers, both consumers and businesses.
He also said that Gumtree’s accelerated growth in the African continent will lead to the creation of new jobs and the development of technology, giving a clue to the continental expansion plans they have for the platform.
The acquisition of Gumtree continues the trend of acquisitions currently sweeping the South African tech ecosystem. Acquisitions announced by TechCabal over the past month include Hyperclear’s acquisition of data analytics and software platform Principa, inq’s acquisition. hyperconverged cloud technology solutions provider Syrex and MTN’s proposed acquisition of mobile network service provider Telkom.