Afro-Caribbean grocery startup Oja bags £2.5m

A grocery startup which targets African and Caribbean shoppers has entered the market after raising almost £2.5 million.

Oja launches tomorrow with a warehouse in southeast London with plans to cover the capital in weeks.

The UK is already home to firms including Gorillas and Gopuff, but founder Mariam Jimoh denied she was building “just another grocery delivery platform”.

Speaking to Sifted, she said there was a “huge subset of products that I was used to using that I just couldn’t get through delivery services”.

READ MORE: Yandex grocery delivery service launches in London

Oja’s product range will focus on Nigerian, Ghanaian and Jamaican products such as plantain or yam.

“Then we’ll go into some other cultures as well: south African countries, and perhaps a few more islands in the Caribbean too,” Jimoh continued.

The daughter of Nigerian immigrants, she said she had “an affinity with products used by my parents and from that community”.

Oja’s pre-seed funding round was led by venture capital firm LocalGlobe, with investment from Sainsbury’s and Booking.com.

LocalGlobe general partner George Henry hailed the startup’s “new and refreshing approach”.

“Mariam and her team are building a game changing company that is set to raise the bar for the underserved communities across London, the UK and Europe,” he claimed.

While most on-demand grocery services can drop off items in 15 minutes, Oja only offers next-day delivery.

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