M4JAM buyer revealed as telecom product distributor Informal Solutions

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The acquirer of failed South African microjobbing startup M4JAM has finally been revealed, with telecoms product distributor Informal Solutions confirming its purchase of the company’s assets.

M4JAM allows brands and NGOs to post a number of small tasks which can then be completed by “jobbers” using their mobile phones, and initially seemed set for a bright future after last year raising funding from Naspers and Tencent-owned WeChat Africa to scale locally and globally.

But in March the board decided to cease trading and sell off M4JAM’s assets after the company failed to achieve profitability within the investment timeframe. It was announced last month a buyer had been found, and that buyer has now been confirmed as Informal Solutions, a subsidiary of DNInvest.

Informal Solution chair Andy Payne said the company had been looking to add products to its existing proposition and required a channel to reach its market more dynamically.

“We were building our own platform when we came across M4JAM. We then realised their application was a near perfect match to our requirements, but with a lot of added appeal,” he said.

“I expect the formal job market to embrace this trend as, for a lot of us, it will become a necessity just to cover essentials.”

Though much of M4JAM will remain the same, its community of 130,000 jobbers can expect a number of new features and enhancements over the next few months. Co-founders Andre Hugo and Warren Venter have left the company.

Informal Solutions chief executive officer (CEO) Richard Dunn said the company was crowd-sourcing ideas around its re-launch.

“Our intention is to give our jobbers a voice and allow them to be part of the exciting new direction that M4JAM is embarking on,” he said.

“Through the M4JAM platform, we have the potential to be one of the biggest job creators in South Africa. We will positively contribute towards addressing the terrible social issues that come with unemployment and underemployment.”

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent’s most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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