Living in the digital era, seeing tech startups getting funding and thriving has become a norm. But the element of surprise just surfaced as a Pakistan-based “trucking” startup Truck It In completed its pre-seed funding round, raising $1.5 million, the largest sum acquired as pre-seed funding in the Middle East and the Asia Pacific region.
This funding round was led by a global seed and growth investor, Global Founders Capital, known for their prior investment in well-performing organizations like Facebook and Linkedin. The pre-seed round was also a host to many other companies, including Pakistan-based Fatima Gobi, accompanied by BitRate Venture, Deosai Ventures, and other undisclosed VCs and angel investors. The founders of Wayve and senior executives were seen gracing the occasion too.
Founded in August 2020, the startup held its pre-seed round in March 2021 and released the official statement in April after receiving the amount. Tito Costa, a partner at Global Founders Capital, on behalf of the firm said, “We are excited to back the Truck It In team and kickstart their effort to digitize the trucking industry in the country, benefiting both shippers and truck drivers. There is an opportunity to transform the industry by driving efficiencies and cost savings through technology and Truck It In has the perfect team to execute on it.”
Similar sentiments were heard from the Fatima Gobi’s representative at the event, Ali Mukhtar, who said, “Having backed successful investments in this space in Hong Kong and Southeast Asia, we are excited to add our first trucking portfolio company in Pakistan. We believe the team is well-positioned to lead the disruption in the trucking sector and we look forward to joining the company in its journey, not just to solve challenging old-world logistics problems but also to add significant social value to the livelihood of individual and SME truck owners across the country.”
For a Pakistani startup aiming at reducing trucking freight by digitizing the process through its online platform, raising an amount this big, in fact, the largest heard till date is quite an achievement and the credit can be owed to not just the idea, but the founders and their expertise in the field, as bragged by one of the co-founders. The founders of Truck It In enlists Muhammad Sarmad Farooq, Raza Afzal, and Haider Navid, all three have extensive experience in relevant operations and categories at Careem and Bykea. Sarmad has worked as the Head of Commercial for Careem’s last-mile delivery in the UAE, Raza has functioned as VP of Growth at Bykea, before which he worked at Careem, helping it establish its fleet in Islamabad. Last but not the least, Haider holds experience in leading Careem Bus in Pakistan. With experience this wide in the operational domain, investors’ attention towards this startup could be easily anticipated.
Analyzing the current trucking market, the startup is faced with quite a competition, with both, the local and regional interest in the market, evident by the launch of Dubai’s Trukkin and Lorryz in Pakistan, last year. But Sarmad, cofounder at the startup deems the market as evergrowing, finding it to be huge enough to let different market players co-exist with abundant opportunities.
Having current operations limited to four cities of Pakistan only, namely Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, and Faisalabad, the startup presents people with a number of options to select and order from, including containers, half-body, flatbed, Mazda, pickup and shehzore for several inter-city routes. Backed with a regularly increasing database of drivers on board, as the co-founder stated, the startup is doing pretty well for its position and is anticipated to thrive in the competitive tracking market in Pakistan.