Pakistan’s GrocerApp scores $5.2mn in Series-A funding

LAHORE: Pakistan’s online grocery delivery platform, GrocerApp, has successfully raised $5.2 million in a Series-A round from local and global institutional and angel investors.

The round was led by Hayaat Global, with participation from Millville Opportunities Fund, New York, MENA-based Wamda Capital, Jabbar Internet Group and Nama Ventures, China-based Haitou Global, and Pakistan-based LeanBricks and Walled City Co. Further participation from angels included former Souq/Amazon MENA CFO Asif Keshodia, Khalid Alami, Ziyad Alami of Huda Group in Dubai, and Jon Puckhaber of Alvento Capital who participated in his personal capacity.

Founded in 2016 by Ahmad Saeed, Hassaan Sadiq, and Rai Bilal, GrocerApp is digitising grocery shopping in Pakistan with a focus on customer experience. Grocery shopping is the largest segment of consumer spending comprising over $48 billion in 2019 according to Household Integrated Economic Survey (HIES) data from the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics. It was until recently also largely an untapped market as far as tech-enabled solutions are concerned.

Prior to GrocerApp, the founders were key team members of PakWheels, scaling the company to one of the earliest Pakistani tech ecosystem powerhouses.

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The $5.2 million Series-A funding comes on the back of strong growth numbers for GrocerApp; only seven months after it secured $1 million in seed funding from leading institutional and angel investors, GrocerApp has scaled exponentially in Lahore and also expanded rapidly to the twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi.

Between the two rounds, GrocerApp says that its total number of orders and revenue increased 300 per cent, with total annualised revenue exceeding the $15 million mark.

Pakistan has reached a critical mass of internet adoption with 100 million online users. The country has amongst the fastest smartphone adoption rates in the world, with more than 750,000 new data connections each month. GrocerApp is focused on capturing this vibrant new online user base by meeting their online grocery shopping needs through a seamless customer experience.

Commenting on the investment, GrocerApp CEO Ahmad Saeed said, “We owe our success to the vigorous efforts of our brilliant team enabling us to rapidly scale in such a short span of time while maintaining sustainable and healthy unit economics.”

“We are thrilled to have experienced investors as partners helping us not just with capital, but their operational and domain expertise, making GrocerApp a leading e-commerce platform in Pakistan. With the new funding round, we plan to quickly expand our offerings to strategic cities in Pakistan as well as expanding new business initiatives in the online grocery retail segment,” he added.

Commenting on their investment in the round, Hayaat Global Chairman Muhammad Ikhlaq said: “GrocerApp’s team is battle-hardened as it has been in the grocery segment for over four years and knows the arduous grocery vertical well,” he said. “The team has scaled operations with minimal relative funding maintaining momentum with competitors, indicating the ability to succeed without relying solely on cash burn. We are excited to back this seasoned team and the capital injection will catapult GrocerApp into a dominant market position,” said Ikhlaaq.

Asif Keshodia, director at GrocerApp, said: “We’ve created a seamless infrastructure to receive orders, begin fulfillment, and complete delivery. GrocerApp has grown 3x in a matter of months – a testament to the fact that we’re gratifying thousands of customers every day. We believe it has the potential to be the largest retail company in Pakistan which is why we’re committed to pushing our innovations even further.”

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