You have probably heard this a gazillion times this year but I will say it again.
Pakistani startups have raised more money in 2021 than any of the previous 7+ years combined. YTD that number stands at $302 million.
That said, Q4 numbers so far aren’t that strong.
Both the number of deals and the amount raised are significantly down from Q3.
Now, you might say, well, that’s because Q3 was bananas.
Yes, I know.
But, if you look at the historic numbers, Q4 is usually the strongest quarter of the year. For instance, last year, 36% of the entire funding for the year was raised in Q4. This year, it’s less than 10%.
So, what’s the deal? I can think of two likely reasons.
First, many deals were announced in the summer even though they were either closed or finalized in the first and second quarters. This really inflated the third-quarter data.
Second, Pakistan was downgraded from an emerging market to a frontier market in September by MSCI. It’s an important indicator for investors and may have prompted some hesitancy in moving forward.
The year is not over. We might be in for a late December surprise. 🤞
Ghabrana nahin hain.
💰 Funding (disclosed)
PostEx, raised $7.1 million in seed funding from Global Founders Capital, FJ Labs, ru-Net, MSA Capital, VentureSouq, Alma Capital, Zayn Capital, and Shorooq Partners.
Lettus Kitchens, an Islamabad-based cloud kitchen start-up, raised $250,000 in seed funding from multiple angel investors.
Uber is in talks to bring outside investors to fund the Careem super app. Startup activity in the world’s fifth-largest nation is booming. Another tech IPO is on the way. aCart.pk starts same-day delivery in Lahore. The great talent crunch. Streaming giants YouTube and Spotify release yearly roundups for Pakistan. Daraz hopes to beef up against Amazon. Healthcare for all. Good guy Swyft Logistics. TikTok is back. Rozee has a new CEO. VentureSouq’s launches a $50 million fintech fund for the MENAP region. Help Google help you.
A Q&A with Dr. Erfa Iqbal, CEO, Punjab Board of Investment & Trade (PBIT). How BNPL works in Pakistan. Usman Gul discusses talent misallocation. Selling on Amazon, what’s changed. Real Estate tokenization in Pakistan. Digital Pakistan, startup economy, and the pandemic.
Rabeel Warraich discusses the first institutional fund in Pakistan, false perceptions, and getting things moving on the Emerging Markets Enthusiast podcast.
Yours truly was on Startup Talks to discuss funding data and other related topics. FYI, I won’t put you to sleep at 1.25x playback speed.