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Online trading in mobile phones soars

Business News of Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Source: Tonaton.com

…bringing new possibilities to small businesses

As the country’s mobile revolution continues at full speed, trading in mobile phones online has risen sharply to meet the high levels of demand. Statistics from the National Communications Authority puts the current level of mobile penetration at about 109%. Internet penetration has also risen from 14% in 2011 to 17.11%, a phenomenon mostly driven by mobile web usage. (Source: International Telecommunications Union)

Mobile telephony has brought new possibilities to the African continent. Across urban-rural and rich-poor divides, mobile phones connect individuals to individuals, information, markets and services. Source: Mobile Phones and Economic Development in Africa, Jenny C Aker and Isaac M Mbiti Online trading in mobile phones in Ghana has grown strongly.

Online classifieds website Tonaton.com has reported findings based on the listings on the site by end-August 2013, and the trend is remarkable.

As a result of this trend, certain individuals in the key cities have set up “online shops” to undertake brisk business. One of such people is Nana Osei who lives at Asokwa, Kumasi. According to him, he visits the mobile phone pages of Tonaton.com daily to see the new deals people have posted on the site. “I call and bargain with them and if the price is good, I meet up with them and buy the phones to resell at my shop. These are very good phones and often posted by guys who came to Ghana on holidays and are returning to their countries of abode”, he says. “I make very good margins on the phones that are purchased on Tonaton.com for resale”, he adds.

Ghapson, a mobile phones dealer at Adabraka sells more than half of his phones and accessories online. “I upload almost all my mobile phones and accessories on Tonaton and I receive 10 to 15 calls daily from people wanting to buy one phone or the other”, he says. “I see the Internet as an additional platform for my business and it saves me from all the hustle trying to find buyers”. He adds.

Most of the people who use online as a medium in buying phones etc. talks about its ease and convenience. Akosua, a student in one of the tertiary institutions in Cape Coast talks about her experience. “I like changing my phones and this has made it easier for me to sell and buy a new phone as and when I want it. I bought this IPhone 5 just last week after selling my Blackberry Bold”, she says with a broad smile.

phone

The average price for mobile phones listed on Tonaton.com is pegged at GHc450. The key brands listed are Apple, Blackberry, HTC, LG, Nokia, Samsung and ZTE.

“The number of daily upload of ads for mobile phones has more than doubled since we launched in April this year. The mobile phone sub-category has been one of the fastest since we entered the online classifieds market in Ghana”, remarks Kwabena Opoku-Boakye, Marketing Manager of Tonaton.com. “This number shows that Tonaton.com is not only a market place for people that occasionally want to do great deals, but it also offers an easy entry to a small scale business”, he concludes.

(Source: http://tonaton.com–Tonaton.com has been operative in Ghana since April 2013)

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