Prosus Ventures Invests 13 Million In Pakistan’s Bykea

Bykea just announced that it has raised $13 million in a Series B funding, The investment was led by Prosus Ventures.

Bykea, the motorcycle-based ride-hailing and logistics service in Pakistan, just announced that it has raised $13 million in a Series B funding.

The investment was led by Prosus Ventures (formerly Naspers Ventures), the investing arm of Prosus which is among the largest tech investors in the world. This is their first investment in a Pakistani company. Prior to this their only brush with Pakistan has been through their investment in OLX, which was still an investment in the global company as opposed to direct investment in Pakistan’s market.

Bykea was founded by Muneeb Maayr in 2016, and is currently headquartered in Karachi, Pakistan. It specializes in ride-hailing and logistics. It also partnered with local banks to introduce options for paying bills and getting cash delivered.

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Since its establishment, Bykea has gotten almost $5 million in Series A funding, which was led by Middle East Venture Partners (MEVP) and Sarmayacar. Later on, it also received $2 million in additional funding from MEVP in August 2019.

The round, which brought the total funds raised to US$22m, saw participation from existing investors Middle East Venture Partners and Sarmayacar.

In July 2020, it was reported that Bykea was close to closing a deal on funding, but it was halted by the investors due to the government’s ban on pillion riding to control the spread of Coronavirus. Now the deal has been finalized and Bykea officially reported the amount as well.

This funding will allow Bykea to gain more popularity in Pakistan as it expands its efforts in its aim for becoming the de facto leader in the motorcycle ride-hailing business. Bykea offers its services in Urdu and used motorcycles as their primary form of transport – both factors well suited to the majority of Pakistani population.

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The three cities Bykea operates in, Karachi, Rawalpindi and Lahore, have a combined population of 30 million people. Public transportation is underserved in all three cities, but these urban centers drive the economy of the 5 th most populous country in the world.

Motorbikes are the rails for distributors, couriers, e-commerce retailers and restaurants to move goods and collect receivables, almost entirely in cash in one of the least banked countries in the world.

With 17 million two-wheelers in Pakistan; 4x the number of cars; Bykea offers millions of people the chance to earn an income by tapping into the tremendous opportunity in the country for both transport and hyperlocal commerce.

The company aims to use this to their advantage and offer multiple features through its platform as well as create jobs for multitudes of people. This funding will also help it compete against seasoned veterans in this market like Careem and Uber.

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Maayr said,

Bykea is one of the few internet businesses offering an interface in the Urdu language and we drive our competitive advantage from being highly localized. This approach has helped us become the preferred partner for part-time motorbike gig workers. Our brand is now widely used as a verb for bike taxi and 30 minute deliveries, and the fresh capital allows us to expand our network to solidify our leading position.

Prosus Chief Investment Officer, Fahd Beg said,

Pakistan is primed to experience extremely strong growth in internet services over the next decade, with a rapidly increasing middle class. This growth provides immense opportunity for companies like Bykea that are transforming big societal needs like transportation, logistics and payments through a technology-enabled platform. Bykea has already seen impressive traction in the country and with our investment will be able to execute further on their vision to become Pakistan’s ‘Super-App’.

The article is originally published at pro pakistani

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