Wasoko, formerly Sokowatch, has raised $125 billion in a series-B funding round that reportedly values the last-mile distribution and logistics African company at $625 million.
The round was led by Tiger Global and Avenir Growth Capital with a slew of participants that included:
- VNV Global
- Binny Bansal, co-founder of Flipkart
- Sujeet Kumar, co-founder of Udaan
- Quona Capital
- 4DX Ventures
- Golden Palm Investments
- JAM Fund
Wasoko allows retailers from Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda, Ivory Coast, and Senegal to order products from suppliers via SMS or its mobile app for same-day delivery to their stores and shops via a network of logistics drivers.
The company also offers a buy now, pay later option for retailers who need working capital to order more goods.
Since its launch in 2016, Wasoko claims to have:
- Delivered 2.5 million orders to over 50,000 informal retailers
- Operational and made deliveries across the aforementioned 6 ocuntries
- Revenue growth over the past 12 months at over 500%
The company currently has more than 800 full-time employees across Africa.
In July 2021, Sokowatch partnered FinX to offer informal merchants in Kigwali, Rwanda, access to financial services that includes Decentralized Finance (DeFi) to scale their operations.
In order to scale the pilot to thousands of its merchants, SokoWatch seeks to unlock efficient pools of capital by leveraging deposits in Luna, an algorithmic stablecoin pegged to the US Dollar, while leveraging DeFi as a treasury tool.
The latest investment, which is identified as the second largest out of the fintech sector, will allow Wasoko to further drive geographic expansion and product growth across the continent.
The company is eyeing the Western and Southern African markets, with Senegal, Nigeria, and Ghana being some of the targeted locations.
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