On Friday, the 11th of July, in a conference hall at the Radisson Blu Hotel Ikeja, B2B wholesale marketplace, Eze Wholesale hosted a product showcase and networking event. The event was tagged “Eze Connect” and graced by mobile dealers, distributors, and sellers.

Eze Wholesale is a YC-backed, fully automated, wholesale marketplace for new and used electronics. The mobile phone retail market is huge in emerging markets like Nigeria but the process of buying these phones and other devices in bulk is mainly manual. It requires in-person store visits or business is conducted over chat apps, and logistics is often complicated.  

Eze Wholesale was born from a discovery by founders, Josh Nzewi and David Iya  that the used mobile phones available in the Nigerian market weren’t of the highest quality yet they were way more expensive than in the United States where the founders live. Digging into these issues, they discovered a distribution problem. The used electronics market in Nigeria is full of middlemen who create price hikes. Often these electronics can be found in better quality quite easily on platforms like eBay and other local marketplaces in America but between shipping and middlemen, the prices become much higher in Nigeria. There is also zero quality control, and a lot of fraud occurs with these untrustworthy middlemen. The whole process leads to increased costs which are passed on to buyers, quality assurance problems, and generally takes up valuable time and resources from both buyers and sellers. 

Josh and David decided to buy  these phones locally in the United States, and they began wholesaling them in Nigeria in 2020. They realised there was a lot of demand for these types of phones and on the flip side, there were a lot of companies in the United States selling these phones but were not exposed to markets like Nigeria with a lot of demand, so they created Eze Wholesale. According to Josh Nzewi, “When the business first started, it was a simple authentication model, but we realised that with an online platform, we could bring much more to the market. There are so many services that are being leveraged for consumers that wholesalers are not able to access just because of the way they do business, but an online marketplace can utilise those methods to make trade much easier,” he said at the Eze Connect event.

Eze Wholesale has become a bridge between sellers in the United States and other countries and wholesale buyers in Nigeria. They enable global trade by providing a B2B marketplace for wholesalers, distributors, retailers, and enterprise companies. Wholesalers post their available stock on the platform, and buyers can buy directly without having to pass through multiple middlemen and price hikes.

The platform is 100% anonymous. Eze matches buyers with sellers, and they also authenticate the goods before shipping them to buyers. Eze Wholesale enables faster transactions, better quality, and price, transparency. 

Eze has a plain grading system for their devices that make buying and selling more transparent and trustworthy. From new to open-box , or grade A to grade C devices, buyers know the exact condition of the products they’re getting before they make payment.

At the Eze Connect event, Nzewi introduced some new services that the platform will now offer;

  • Auctioning: Sometimes, the middlemen who retail stores buy from purchase their stock from auctions in the US. Now Eze Wholesale is giving retail stores direct access to these auctions. 
  • Net Payment Terms: The company is partnering with Carbon to include net payment rates with low margins that allow retailers to purchase more and make more profit. In a business where sellers buy high-ticket items with low margins, cash flow can sometimes be an issue. If sellers can buy more in bulk, they can sell more and have a quicker turnover.
  • Cross-border payments: Buyers on the platform can now make payments in local currencies, and Eze handles the conversion. Now sellers in Nigeria can buy and pay in Naira with Eze’s automatic conversion system.
  • Logistics: One of the biggest challenges in running an e-commerce-based business is logistics. Eze is partnering with reliable logistics partners to facilitate quicker, safer, and more efficient delivery within 3-5 days.
  • New electronics: Eze is expanding its supplier base so buyers can get new devices directly from makers. They’ve realised a need for more efficient distribution of new electronics, so now they’ve brought Vivo, Tecno, Xiaomi, Samsung, and Nokia as authorised dealers selling directly on the Eze Wholesale platform. Buyers no longer have to go to retail stores or online e-commerce stores to purchase these items, they can buy in bulk directly from the company on Eze’s platform.

Eze Wholesale is based in Los Angeles but with a global presence. They currently ship to 15 countries worldwide  and onboard sellers from Europe, Japan, and Hong Kong, and now they’re setting up a facility in Dubai. Ultimately they hope to bring stocks from all over the world and want buyers to have access to the best quality and prices. Within the first two years of operation, the company made over $8 million and recently raised $3.7 million in seed funding.

Present at the event and participating in a Q&A panel was one of Eze’s logistics partner, Phoenix Logistics. Part of the event was a showcase of products. Eze presented devices of every grade so the audience could see the quality of the products they’ll get access to on the platform. Representatives from Vivo also presented their products, particularly their flagship product, the Vivo A27 5G device.

Other companies present at the event include representatives from Samsung and Nokia.

The event ended on a high note with gifts from Eze Wholesale and Vivo Communications.

Find out more about Eze Wholesale here.

Uma Edwin for Partner Content Writer, TechCabal

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