The Egyptian startup ecosystem is heating up. According to Eng. Amr Mahfouz, ITIDA’s CEO, Egyptian startups have accounted for 26% of deals in the MENA region, amounting to nearly USD194 million in the first half of 2021. During the month of June alone, Egyptian startups raised a whopping USD 52 million. The majority of this figure comes from Trella’s USD 42 million funding round led by Maersk Growth and Saudi Arabian investor Raed Ventures. Funding towards Egyptian startups has been growing with an impressive CAGR of 100% from 2015-2021. In this article, I will be looking at the most funded startups in Egypt in 2021.
Trella – USD 42 million
Trella is a digital platform that connects truckers with freight loads. During the past few years, Trella has consolidated its position as the largest trucking marketplace in Egypt. Founded in 2018 by four friends Omar Hagrass, Ali El Atrash, Muhammad El Garem and Pierre Saad, Trella now has over 350 shipper partners, including Coca-Cola, Maersk, Henkel, and Orascom and more than 15,000 carrier partners.
“Our aim is to go deep in our current markets while keeping our eyes close on Africa, where we believe the opportunity is really big” – Trella’s CEO and Co-founder Omar Hagrass
In June 2021, the startup has closed a successful $42 million Series A funding round, comprising of debt and equity. The round includes $30 million in equity investment and $12 million as debt financing. The equity investment was co-led by Maersk Growth and Raed Ventures and included notable venture capital firms such as Algebra Ventures, Vision Ventures, Next Billion Ventures, Venture Souq, Foundation Ventures, 4DX Ventures and Flexport.
Maxab – USD 40 million
MaxAB is a B2B e-commerce platform that connects food and grocery retailers to suppliers in the most under-served geographies. They are re-engineering the informal grocery and food market using empowering technologies and innovative supply chains that is designed to fit the needs of retailers in the areas we serve.
“We are on a mission to empower the retailers, by availing access to a wide range of products, premium service and operational support. Our technology enabled supply chain is helping put the correct amount of food at the right place at the right time.”
The startup has raised $40 million in a Series A round, led by RMBV, with participation from the IFC, Flourish Ventures, Crystal Stream Capital, Rise Capital, and Endeavor Catalyst as well as MaxAB’s existing investors, Beco Capital and 4DX Ventures.
Paymob – USD 18.5 million
Paymob was founded in 2015 by Alain El Hajj, Islam Shawky and Mostafa El Menessy. It is a payments service provider which empowers businesses to accept payments however and wherever clients want to pay.
“We couldn’t be more excited for Paymob’s next phase of growth; the market opportunity in the region is unprecedented. The large digital payments gap still exists and we are delighted to be working with progressive-thinking regulators to address this. This latest capital raise will accelerate our progress to reducing the digital payments bottleneck. All our existing investors have increased their holdings, and we thank them both for their support and the confidence they have in our business model and track record of execution.”Islam Shawky
CEO and co-founder of Paymob
The startup has raised $18.5 million in its Series A round, led by Global Ventures with participation from A15 and Dutch entrepreneurial development bank FMO. This round includes $15 million in new capital from existing investors.
Homzmart – USD 15 million
Homzmart is an eCommerce platform that sells home furniture, home décor, lighting and home supplies through a visualized community. The company was founded in late 2019 by Mahmoud Ibrahim and Ibrahim Mohammed. Currently, the platform features over 55,000 products from thousands of brands and merchants across Egypt.
In May 2021, the startup has raised $15 million in a Series A led by MSA Capital and Nuwa Capital with participation of Rise Capital, Impact46, EQ2 Ventures, and Outliers Venture Capital.
Bosta – USD 6.7 million
Bosta delivery will ship your products anywhere in Egypt. Launched in 2017 by Mohamed Ezzat and Ahmed Gaber, Bosta is an overnight delivery provider for e-commerce companies in Egypt. Their goal is to disrupt the logistics industry by bringing technology and experience altogether to provide a one-stop-shop for delivery solutions. Since its inception, the company has delivered more than 4 million parcels for more than 2.2 thousand businesses.
“Solving the last mile delivery problem for ecommerce companies is very crucial for the ecommerce business to grow in Egypt and the Middle East. As a company, we are committed to helping the ecommerce sector grow by providing them with speedy delivery, quality, and exceptional service—all while making sure our prices are one of the most competitive to help them with their tight unit economics and help them grow a profitable business. At Bosta, with our customer-driven approach and finding tech-driven solutions, we make sure that we are able to hit the three pillars while keeping our costs as low as possible,”Mohamed Ezzat,
Founder and CEO of Bosta
In May 2021, Bosta secured a $6.7M in Series A funding round led by Amman-based global VC Silicon Badia.
Telda – USD 5 million
Telda is the first app in Egypt that aims to revolutionize the banking sector through providing an online-only experience. The company enables customers to create a free account to send and receive money. Telda is the brainchild of Swvl’s co-founder and former CTO, Ahmed Sabbah and an ex-senior engineer at Uber, Youssef Sholqamy. Within a month of its launch, 30,000 people had already signed up, with 17,000 on the waiting list for a card.
“I was fond of the idea, and it was coming from a huge pain of payments we had in Egypt and the region. And for me, I was kind of like waiting for this to happen in Egypt, or if not, I thought I’ll tap into the opportunity someday,”Ahmed Sabbah,
Only 2 months after its founding, Telda raised $5 million led by Sequoia Capital, with participation from Global Founders Capital and Class 5 Global. This marks the largest pre-seed round in the region.
Flextock- USD 3.25 million
Flextock was founded in September 2020 by Mohamed Mossaad and Enas Siam. The company simply enables online businesses of all sizes to outsource all their logistics needs – from warehousing and logistics to delivery and cash collection.
“We saw it as an opportunity to build a tech-enabled platform to be able to help anyone that wanted to grow their own independent brand or store”Enas Siam,
In May 2021, the startup raised $3.25 million from numerous venture capital firms and accelerator programs including Foundation Ventures, MSA Capital, Jameel Investment Management Company, Alter Global, B&Y Venture Partners, Y Combinator and Access Bridge Ventures.
In the table below you’ll find a summary of the top 7 funded Egyptian startups with the funding received, type of funding round, the date the startup was founded.
|Startup Name||Funding received||Round||Led by|
|Trella||USD 42 million||Series A||Maersk and Raed Ventures|
|Maxab||USD 40 million||Series A||RMBV Fund|
|Paymob||USD 18.5 million||Series A||Global Ventures|
|Homzmart||USD 15 million||Series A||MSA Capital and Nuwa Capital|
|Bosta||USD 6.7 million||Series A||Silicon Badia|
|Telda||USD 5 million||Pre-seed||Sequoia Capital|
|Flextock||USD 3.25 million||Pre-seed||numerous|