Egyptian Informal Retailer Marketplace Raises $6.2M, The Largest-Ever Seed Round In Africa
Egyptian business-to-business e-commerce marketplace MaxAB connects informal food and grocery retailers with suppliers via mobile and has completed the largest-ever seed round raised by an African startup.
Small traditional stores make up around 90 percent of Egypt’s $50 billion food retail market, CEO El-Megharbel told Techcrunch.
MaxAB aims to automate and simplify that market by connecting stores and suppliers through its online platform.
Cairo-based MaxAB raised the $6.2 million round co-led by Endure Capital, a Silicon Valley-based VC firm with offices in Cairo and Dubai, and 4DX Ventures, an Africa-focused early-stage venture firm with offices in San Francisco and Accra, Ghana. Participation included 500 Startups, Beco Capital, Outlierz Ventures and other local investors, according to a press release emailed to Moguldom.
Morocco-based Outlierz Ventures, which is backed by private investors from Silicon Valley, the Middle East, and Africa, invests in tech-enabled startups. 500 Startups is a Silicon Valley-based early-stage venture fund and seed accelerator that was founded in 2010.
Listen to GHOGH with Jamarlin Martin | Episode 67: Jamarlin Martin
Jamarlin goes solo to discuss the NFL’s entertainment and “social justice” deal with Jay-Z. We look back at the Barclays gentrification issue in the documentary “A Genius Leaves The Hood: The Unauthorized Story of Jay-Z.”
Largest-ever seed round
The Cairo-based startup’s $6.2 million investment is the largest-ever seed round for a tech startup based in Africa.
The previous highest seed round raised in Africa was a $6 million investment from Silicon Valley investors Western Technology Investment and Y Combinator in Nigerian e-logistics platform Kobo360 at the end of 2018.
MaxAB plans to use the $6.2 million investment to expand to more cities in Egypt while building its technology team. Expansion into other parts of North Africa is not on the agenda at the moment.
MaxAB has a fleet of 60 trucks and a large warehouse that serves Cairo. The tech startup employs 270 people and has 9,000 retailers on its app, according to the press release.