Y Combinator Invests in UAE-based Kaso
The UAE-based Food supply chain solutions provider Kaso (Formerly Elkaso) has successfully raised the Y combinator list of investees as it continues exploring expansion in its leadership, talent, and product offering.
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The UAE-based B2B platform digitizing the ordering process between restaurants and food suppliers in the UAE and KSA, Kaso (Formerly ElKaso) has announced the appointment of Frank Biedka, former CTO of leading European e-commerce platform, Zalando, upon the closure of their most recent investment from global accelerator Y Combinator.
Founded in early 2021 by veteran entrepreneurs Manar Alkassar and Ahmed Soliman, Elkaso provides a Tech-enabled platform connecting restaurants with suppliers in time to refill their stock needs or make last-minute orders on demand. The Co-founders are no strangers to the world of tech startups, where Alkassar was the Head of New Ventures at Rocket Internet Middle East, while Soliman previously was Vice President at Delivery Hero overseeing logistics operations for all DeliveryHero brands in the region.
As recorded in our flagship MENA 2022 Venture Investment Report, the F&B sector in MENA remained the most funded sector in 2021, following a $415M Mega Round closed by cloud kitchen network Kitopi. Raising only 12% more deals than the previous year, MENA-based F&B startups have been able to regain investor traction by focusing on optimization, personalization, and digital distribution. These digital solutions have been great fuel for the cloud kitchen tech startups and the food supply chain aggregators, especially with an increased global demand for enhanced online ordering. In this regard, it was F&B startups like cloud kitchen tech startup Grubtech and virtual restaurant Kitch, Egypt-based on-demand delivery startups Breadfast and elmenus, as well as Saudi-based F&B multi-platformer and point of sales solutions provider Foodics that have raised major rounds in 2021.
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Fueled by an initial pre-seed funding round in 2021, the Dubai-based startup has grown 10x in the last six months, servicing over 3500 restaurant & supplier partners in the UAE and Saudi Arabia alone, after only eight months of operation since Kaso’s launch in June 2021. Co-founder of Kaso and former VP of Delivery Hero logistics, Ahmed Soliman, said, “We are incredibly proud to now be part of the prestigious portfolio of YC companies. Kaso’s acceptance and hypergrowth are testaments to the region’s need for a digitized solution to streamline the food supply procurement. We are bridging an evident gap in the thriving $50B food supply Gulf market, with our users already reducing supply costs by 15% and reducing order errors by 80%.”
Kaso’s leadership team expansion comes soon after getting funded by the prestigious Silicon Valley-based accelerator, Y Combinator. Kaso has also revealed an extensive rebrand of the company representing the startup’s rapid evolution over the past few months. Formerly known as Elkaso, Kaso’s rebrand includes the launch of a new website, kaso.ai, introducing the company’s new visual identity, and a fresh new name and logo. Commenting on the new leadership expansion and latest fundraise, Co-Founder Manar Alkassar concluded, “Biedka’s extensive experience in driving innovation through technology aligns perfectly with Kaso’s mission to revolutionize, digitize and simplify the food supply procurement process. I am excited to welcome a tech leader in the industry to continue taking Kaso to our path to reach $300m in GMV by end of this year.”
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