Fintech startup Trukkr raises $6.4 million in seed funding to provide financial access to Pakistan’s trucking industry
Trukkr, a fintech platform for Pakistan’s trucking industry, has raised $6.4 million in a seed funding round to roll out lending products for truckers in Pakistan. The latest funding is in addition to the $600,000 seed funding Trukkr raised in 2021.
The round was led by Accion Venture Lab and London-based Sturgeon Capital, with participation from Haitou Global, Al Zayani Venture Capital, and investor Peter Findley.
Founded in 2019 by CEO Sheryar Bawany, Mishal Adamjee, Haji Ali, Waqas Khatri, and Kasra Zunnaiyer, Trukkr started out as a marketplace to connect truckers with shippers. The startup later pivoted into fintech but has no plan to scrap the marketplace model entirely. The company’s new business model is similar to Indonesia’s Kargo, Mexico’s Solvento, and Kobo 360 in Africa, but adapted to the Pakistani market.
In addition to the funding, CEO Sheryar also said Trukkr has secured a non-banking financial institution (NBFI) license from the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP).
“It is very early in Pakistan for a marketplace model,” says Sheryar Bawany, co-founder and CEO of Trukkr. “The biggest problem that we saw in connecting shippers with transporters was that transporters did not have money to do the trips.”
Currently, less than 5% of trucking companies in Pakistan using its platform have access to financial services, Trukkr said. This leaves the companies often having to wait up to 90 days for payments and leaving them unable to cover expenses such as fuel, tolls, and truck maintenance.
Trukkr currently has some 20,000 drivers on its platform, servicing 100 of the biggest companies in the country including Shan Foods, Artistic Milliners, International Industries Limited, and Lucky Cement, co-founder Mishal Adamjee said in a statement.
“When we think about fintech lending businesses in emerging markets, two of the key challenges that startups must solve are data and distribution,” says Robin Butler, partner and head of impact at Sturgeon Capital. “This data challenge is exacerbated in the opaque, offline trucking market in Pakistan and the participants have historically been chronically underserved by traditional financial institutions.”
“We have built a powerful engine of growth and inclusion, with a unique origination and an underwriting model built for developing markets, which has enabled us to grow smartly, safely, and scale-ably across an ever-changing global economic landscape,” says Mishal Adamjee, co-founder of Trukkr.