In the two quarters couple of Nigeria ecommerce startups have closed shop, most notably online marketplace buyam, general consignment store buyology , fashion retailer styd and luxury fashion retailer. 5th and Quansah. These were all companies with founders, visions, dreams and a team and now they dont exist, what always struck me was the way they do down, there is never a farewell message on their website, or twitter or Instagram even our local tech blogs ignore their demise, its almost as if death comes at night and all your left with a home page link that dosent open.
I always imagine that if my company was not to not exist that I would want to have a message to share with our customers and followers that were going away with maybe a rose coloured view or candid story for why. My partner said it speaks to my branding core that even at my imaginary end how I go out matters.
For every ecommerce company that shuts down, theres 10 setting up in its a place. Most will last for a quarter, some a year, some two, and a small minority longer.
Whatever the case, what holds true is that there is a long winding road to sustainability and profitability for all Nigerian internet startups. The challenges are many. We still have a seemingly large but unaware internet population, logistics issues, slow internet, lack of funds and a local angel network that doesn’t understand online or see the opportunity. Giving up sometimes feels. appears. looks. easier that fighting for another day.
On my best days I am just happy to live another day to get to still run this awesome company and on the average day I am swimming against a tidal wave thats often seems bigger than me. Harder than I imagined and lonelier by the day.
The art of giving up is simply that. Not Giving up. NOT GIVING UP.
The post is for my 8 year cousin, Fike who is so proud of #fashpa