Kenyans have developed an online platform for construction products/services, WaziMart, in a bid to consolidate online Kenyan buyers and suppliers for construction services and materials.
The website allows consumers to access hundreds of hardware materials from sellers who market their products and services on the platform.
This joins other online platforms that have been creating a platform for buyers and sellers to interact without seeing each other, though most of them have shied away from hardware material in preference to electronics.
Speaking about the new development, the CEO Antony Maina remains optimistic about the venture.
“The online platform is making it easier and faster for the technology savvy and helpless consumers who need quick services from architects to a plumber to household fixtures sorted in a few minutes. Online construction products site WaziMart launches in bid to connect buyers with suppliers in Kenya.,” says Maina.
WaziMart borrows the idea of taxi-hailing apps where a user creates an account and makes an order or request for a service from the WaziMart website. The user is then connected to a nearby or available seller or service provider.
Maina says that the development was influenced by the online uptake of internet mobile phone-based services in Kenya. Millions of Kenyans use the internet on daily basis, with the advent of smart phones and 3G/4G internet access in the country, which is ranked among the countries with the fastest internet in Africa.
The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) estimates that 26 per cent of the Kenyan population were online in 2016, a number that is echoed by the World Bank.
Research ICT Africa, a South Africa based body, also reports that 26 per cent of the population is using the Internet. The GSM Association, a global trade body for the telecommunication sector, reports that at least 52 per cent of Kenyans were using mobile Internet in quarter four of 2016.
In 2016, ICT Gaps Study found that at least 78 per cent of Kenyans were covered by 3G, suggesting that a similar level of access, if not use.