Rider, a logistics start-up aiming to create a next-day delivery service for e-commerce businesses similar to Amazon, has raised $3.1 million in a seed round. The funding came from American technology startup accelerator Y Combinator, as well as new investors i2i Ventures, Flexport, Soma Capital, and Rebel Fund.
The round also included existing investors such as Global Founders Capital, Fatima Gobi Ventures, and TPL E-Ventures, along with notable angel investor Arash Ferdowsi, co-founder of Dropbox.
Rider has now raised a total of $5.4m since September 2021, with this seed round. The company, founded in 2019, has been focusing on building a network of sorting hubs, urban delivery centres and a digitised fleet in order to offer next-day delivery service to online sellers in Pakistan. In addition to route optimisation for delivery agents and live tracking and scheduling for buyers, the platform also offers a digitised warehousing function for sellers.
The company is headed by Salman Allana, who previously worked as an executive for UPS Pakistan. Allana is the son of Habib Bank Ltd chairman Sultan Ali Allana. Since September 2021, when the company received its pre-seed investment, Rider’s monthly revenues have grown by 110% and its customer base has doubled to 650 online sellers. Rider has now delivered over 3 million parcels across 60 cities in Pakistan.
“We launched Rider because we knew the traditional courier companies in Pakistan were not set up to serve the e-commerce market and were failing to capture the online buying trend. The problem is huge, circa $1 billion GMV [gross merchandise value] is lost annually due to failed and slow deliveries,” said Mr Allana, the company’s founder and CEO.
He said the retail industry is worth north of $150bn industry, although it’s still stuck in bricks and mortar. “We are fully behind the mission to enable more than 1m, primarily female-owned Instagram/Facebook sellers to trade.”