Wale is live broadcasting the information about a handbag in a shopping mall. (Photo: IC)
Wale, the 29-year-old grandson of a king in Benin, has become a popular daigou, a person who who earns money buying items in China for consumers in foreign countries.
Wale is a graduate student at Huzhou University, in East China's Zhejiang Province. He started his business early last year and has been selling Chinese products like smartphones, computers, shoes, clothes and household appliances to his hometown back in Africa. These Chinese goods are very popular among Benin locals for their good quality and low prices.
Wale began selling Chinese smartphones even before he came to China. He chose to study in Huzhou, after hearing the city has a thriving wholesale market and is close to commercial center Yiwu.
He planned to grow his business as he studies in China. Wale quickly learned Chinese, a skill which helps him communicate smoothly with the locals, particularly when bargaining with his suppliers.
At first he just wanted to make some pocket money. Later, due to increasing demand from Benin clients, he started to treat it as a serious business.
He now live broadcasts the information about products while shopping, and directly communicates with buyers.
Wale has been using social networks like WeChat and Taobao to release information. Most of his posts are videos that demonstrate every detail of a product. His clients are not only from African countries like Benin, Congo and Ethiopia but also from the US, France and Spain. To better communicate with his clients, he has learned five foreign languages.
Wale is no different from many other African students who choose to work as daigou while studying in China. But Wale has a bigger ambition of expanding his business.
He's thinking of finding a factory to produce customized products. In addition, he's hoping to sell products from his hometown, like gold and hazelnuts, to China, using the Belt and Road initiative.