Pakistan: Most Active Investors in 2021
MAGNiTT UPDATE 12/10/21: Based on the feedback we have received on this article from our network and extended community, we’re taking this opportunity to share our methodology and address some of the questions raised in the process. We’d like to thank you for your inputs and thoughts as we continuously seek to refine the circular interaction between MAGNiTT and the Ecosystem it covers, hoping the points below could clarify some ambiguities:
- All deals included in the articles/reports are verified using an external news source or information from both Investor & Startup. Only Verified deals are included in the published content. If a deal is not verified it is not included in our data analysis.
- Startup headquarter information is used to filter the investments made in a specific country. When reporting on geographical activity, we only include those with HQ in that country. Those outside are not included as part of investment activity.
- All published content has a set time frame for analysis. Only the deals from the specified timeframe are included. For this article, in line with the release of our Q3 report, is for the first 9 months of 2021. Those announced in October are not included.
- The date of investment is taken as confirmed on the MAGNiTT platform by the investor and/or a public source. This may differ from other methodologies used by other publications. MAGNiTT uses the platform as the source of data for its research. As part of our data outreach, in the last month of each quarter, we reach out to all investors on the platform (through email) and ask them to add or verify their information. This process takes 3 weeks with multiple follow-up emails to investors. We rely on this information to keep the platform up to date as well as triangulating against 3rd party sources.
- All investment rounds included in benchmarking and analysis can be found on the individual investor profiles. If you believe that any of this information is incorrect, please do reach out to us at [email protected]
Following the feedback received today we have reached out to many of the investors that have been mentioned to verify their investment rounds for 2021 and their activity accordingly.
Data accuracy and transparency are core to the MAGNiTT proposition and we take all your feedback seriously. While we have confidence in our robust methodology for analysis, we welcome feedback as we enter new markets to ensure we are as comprehensive as possible. If you have any further thoughts or questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to us on [email protected].
As we near the release of our Q3 Venture Investment Reports, we take time this week to explore an up-an-coming ecosystem that has observed significant strides this year. Following a slow and gradual growth compared to its peer Emerging Venture Markets, the Pakistan ecosystem has recorded major breakthroughs this year raising 13% more funding in 2021 than the previous 4 years combined.
Return on Investment seems to be reflecting well on the Pakistani startup ecosystem, as more local and global investors show increased interest across industries. The Pakistani venture space observed a 4-year consecutive growth in number of transactions reaching an all-time high in 2021, however, it is the magnitude and the nature of stakeholders involved that make this year’s rounds particularly impressive. By Q3 2021, Pakistan has observed its highest funding round to date capped at $85M by Airlift Technologies, its largest SEED round by FinTech TAG, and most importantly an unprecedented number of international investors accounting for 78% of all investments by Q3 2021.
Despite that only 5 of the top 20 investors (by number of transactions) were local by Q3 2021, 2 Pakistani and 2 Global VC firms ranked on top of Pakistan’s most active investors in 2021:
Indus Valley Capital is a Pakistan-based Early-Stage VC focused on Pakistani startups on a mission to build Pakistan’s entrepreneurial breadth and innovative technology. The VC helps startups through quick and instant access to capital, product & growth resources, and scaling opportunities, as well as a solid network of investors, successful founders, veteran VCs, and strategic stakeholders.
Throughout this year, Indus Valley Capital built its track record of investments in startups showing technological advancement and most importantly remarkable growth potential. Through its 7 investments in 2021 YTD, the Pakistan-based VC ranked as the most active investor this year with investments across FinTech, EdTech, Transport & Logistics, and Healthcare. Of the many visionary investments backed by Indus Valley Capital this year, most notable were its participation in major rounds by Bazaar and Airlift Technologies, a $2.1M Pre-Seed investment in EdTech platform Maqsad, and a $1M SEED investment in Healthcare platform Marham connecting specialists with users seeking health consultancy.
USA-headquartered SOSV is a global venture capital firm that operates early-stage startup development programs focused on two encompassing areas. The first is revolutionary technology that promises the betterment of humanity and the planet. The second is cross-border markets ready for exponential growth, especially in Aisa. Co-occupying this rank is Pakistan-based regional VC Fatima Gobi Ventures. Now the one of the most active investors in Pakistan, FGV’s investees were involved in more than 40 percent of the country’s announced funding rounds as of September 2021. FGV’s strong combination of Fatima Ventures’ local expertise and Gobi Partners’ regional know-how has helped the VC spot first movers and get ahead of key trends.
SOSV ranked amongst the most active investors in Early-Stage startups in Pakistan in 2021, yet unlike other VCs, US-based SOSV seems to be focused on digitizing transactions and online purchasing as it builds an ingenious track record of 5 investments backing FinTech, E-commerce, and InsurTech. The highest funding round by the US-based VC was a $2M SEED round in Pakistan-based FinTech DigiKhata earlier this year; with other remarkable SEED rounds backing InsurTech SmartChoice, E-commerce marketplaces 1Trolley and Swag Kicks.
Fatima Gobi Ventures had an equally active year, backing innovators in FinTech, E-commerce, EdTech, and Transport & Logistics. Between Pre-Seed and Seed rounds, the Pakistan-based VC backed major rounds in Fintech with TAG and Safepay, supported the next generation of Truck fleet optimization with Truck It In. In its only Pakistan-based Series A round, Fatima Gobi Ventures supported the market expansion of Tajir Pakistan, the B2B marketplace optimizing the potential of Small and Medium-sized retailers.
Zayn Capital, the UK-based investment firm providing debt and equity financing to start-ups in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and MENA has had a keen eye for disruptive innovations in the Pakistani startup ecosystem this year. Through smart and impactful investments Zayn Capital spotted some of the most pioneering ventures in the movement of people and products, as well as intricate online financing and payment solutions. Zayn Capital's funding journey in 2021 started with Pakistan-based FinTech Abhi Finance and continued to back four other FinTechs including online trading platform KTrade, and the delivery platform championing cash on delivery solutions PostEX. Most remarkably, Zayn Capital found immense opportunity in backing startups that integrate Tech to capitalize on Pakistan's rich heritage and natural resources with startups like Female-led FinTech Oraan, creating community-led crowdfunding platforms offering micro-financing solutions, and Tazah Technologies bridging buyers to fresh food suppliers seamlessly.
Looking to grasp this startup landscape? Access real-time data on relevant investors in Pakistan