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Traditional retailers are the bedrock of Africa’s commerce, which women mostly drive.

More than 10 million informal retail outlets represent more than 90% of the total trade of essential goods. In Nigeria alone, more than 1,500,000 outlets sell more than $12 billion of FMCG goods. Even though informal retailers sell 90% of all goods in Africa, many challenges limit them from reaching their full potential. Their challenges range from high inflations, reduced consumer spending, currency fluctuations, supply chain issues, high transportation costs and access to credit.

A major challenge for these traders is access to credit for financing inventory purchases. Retailers need to purchase more inventory to become more profitable and get higher margins. To solve this problem, Shecluded partnered with BetaStore to finance informal retailers to purchase more inventory.

BetaStore gives access to informal retailers to the widest assortment of FMCG goods at wholesale prices and delivers them to their stores. The retailers don’t need to close their shops to go to the open markets and visit tens of suppliers to source basic goods. BetaStore provides its over 76% female-owned community members with tech-enabled B2B inventory and access to finance, thus giving them better access to the widest assortment of FMCG goods at wholesale price and delivered to their stores.

Shecluded is a female-focused financial company with a mission of creating prosperity for women. The partnership with Beta store is to provide access to inclusive financing for the women within the Beta Store community. Supporting informal retailers aligns with our aim of advancing the Central Bank of Nigeria’s goal to close the financial inclusion gap to 92% by 2024.

Speaking about the partnership, Ifeoma Uddoh, Shecluded’s founder, said, “We believe it’s time for women in the informal traders to get the gender lens financing they need to scale and thrive, and this partnership offers us the opportunity to be an enabler for women to trade more and increase their income.

T.B Food Store, a small retailer in the Beta Store network, had this to say;

“I am happy with the services you are rendering. It has helped me a lot. First of all, I don’t have to lock my shop again to go to the market every time. It has reduced the stress of gathering money to go to the market because I can leverage your payLater program. I used to sell Indomie as retail alone because I couldn’t buy a lot of cartons to sell to customers that asked, but now with BetaStore, I can ask for two cartons to sell to customers in the morning and another one by evening. It’s convenient for me, so I don’t go to the market every time again.”

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