NIGERIA – Nigerian-based startup, Betastore has closed a US$2.5 million in pre-series A funding to facilitate its expansion to Ghana, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Cameroon by the end of this year.
The latest funding round was led by 500 Global, VestedWorld, and Loyal VC., bringing the total fundraising to date to US$3 million.
The Betastore marketplace enables informal traders to source fast-moving consumer goods (FMCGs) directly from manufacturers or distributors.
By doing so, the start-up keeps the prices of the products competitive by eliminating interactions with sales agents. It also works with logistics partners to ensure the delivery of goods within 24 hours.
“We believe Betastore’s talented team is creating market efficiencies that have the potential to boost the growth of Africa’s retailers. With Betastore, merchants can get greater transparency into wholesaler inventories and price points,” said Amit Bhatti, the principal at 500 Global.
Betastore employs the asset-light model since it does not have any capital and labor-intensive assets like warehouses or its own fleet of vehicles for delivery.
“What is really important for us is to be able to continue to scale by leveraging our asset-light model. We plan to enter new markets before the end of the year and expand to 100 cities across Nigeria, Ivory Coast, and Senegal,” said Steve Dakayi-Kamga, Betastore CEO.
“We are also planning to reinforce our technology and leadership teams, to bring in new products and improve existing ones.”
Since launch, the startup claims to have grown its customer base and revenues by 10 and 12 times, respectively.
The startup anticipates greater growth especially after entering more countries and rolling out its buy now pay later (BNPL) product, as it taps the retail market in sub-Saharan, which was valued at US$380 billion in 2021, contributing 20-50% of the region’s GDP on average.