Grocery Startup Scores Pakistan’s Largest Early-Stage Funding
(Bloomberg) -- Pakistan’s rapid delivery startup Krave Mart has raised the country’s largest early funding to grow its business in the world’s fifth-most populous nation.
The Karachi-based company, which promises 10-minute delivery, raised $6 million in its pre-seed funding round, which was led by MSA Capital, ru-Net, Global Founders Capital and Zayn Capital, according to Chief Executive Officer Kassim Shroff.
The South Asian nation has seen over $300 million invested in its startups this year, more than the past six years combined. “Q-commerce has emerged as the most sought after sub-segment in venture capital over the last few years,” according to +92Ventures, one of Krave Mart’s investors, referring to quick deliveries via the internet.
The startup’s competitors includes Airlift, Pakistan’s most-funded startup that raised $85 million in August ahead of its international expansion and Berlin-based Delivery Hero SE’s foodpanda. Shroff, who is also co-founder, believes neighborhood grocery stores are the real competition.
The company, which started with Karachi, plans to enter about 10 more cities in Pakistan by the end of the first-quarter next year. It also plans to expand to Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bangladesh. In addition, it plans to start offering fashion, beauty, and electronics among other categories.
“We are where India was 10 years ago. It will take us just 2-3 years to catch up because the ecosystem really favors us,” said Shroff in an interview at his office, referring to the country’s young population, mobile users and funding frenzy. “We felt there is huge space”
Saison Capital, 2AM, Mehta Ventures, Jedar Capital and Lakson Investments are other investors in the round.
Quick commerce “is a hyper-fragmented and inefficient experience” in Pakistan, said Tim Chen, general partner at MSA Capital. “We’ve benchmarked and invested in similar models globally and believe Pakistan is a market ripe for disruption.”
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