Pakistan’s trucking industry startup Trukkr has raised $6.4 million in a seed funding round and received a Non-Banking Financing Company (NBFC) license, Reuters reported on Tuesday.
US-based Accion Venture Lab and UK-based Sturgeon Capital led the seed funding round. In an official statement, Trukkr said the round also saw participation from Haitou Global, Al Zayani Venture Capital, and investor Peter Findley.
Trukkr CEO and co-founder Sheryar Bawany told Reuters that the company plans to launch financial products with a “reasonable risk-adjusted spread” to the benchmark Karachi Interbank Offered Rate (KIBOR).
Fellow Co-founder Mishal Adamjee said there are approximately 20,000 drivers on Trukkr’s platform, serving 100 of the country’s largest companies, including Shan Foods, Artistic Milliners, International Industries Limited, and Lucky Cement. He added that despite limited rail and water freight infrastructure, Pakistan’s $35 billion trucking industry is growing at a 10 percent annual rate.
Commenting on their investment in the Pakistani startup, Accion Venture Lab said the Covid pandemic showed how much the world depended on global supply chains, and wanted to bet “on a company striving to tackle inefficiencies in a market filled with opportunities”.
Trukkr’s business model is similar to that of Kargo in Indonesia, Solvento in Mexico, and Kobo 360 in Africa, but it has been tailored to the Pakistani market. The company provides a transport management system and supply chain solutions to Pakistan’s small and medium-sized trucking companies and is unique in offering fintech to digitize the largely financially excluded and undocumented industry.
The new NBFC license is expected to help Trukkr offer easier access to financial services and help trucking companies cover various expenses including fuel, tolls, and truck maintenance.
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