Nigerian B2B eCommerce startup, TradeDepot, has raised a $10m pre-Series B equity round.
The round was co-led by Partech Africa, International Finance Corporation (IFC), Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi) and MSA Capital.
This comes two years after the startup raised $3m Series A led by Partech Africa in April 2018. Interestingly, the startup was the first beneficiary of Partech Africa’s €100m fund dedicated to “digital champions with Pan-African ambitions” which launched that same year.
Founded in 2016, TradeDepot is digitising retail distribution in Africa by developing an all-round solution that integrates manufactures, distributors, and retailers on one platform.
The startup has built a network of more than 40,000 micro retailers in Nigeria. Similarly, it makes household supplies and essentials affordable for informal retailers by working with multinationals like Nestlé, Unilever, GB Foods.
Through TradeDepot’s platform, retailers can have a real-time view of all prices and discounts available from every major brand. Also, manufacturers are granted full visibility over their distribution and in the process, optimise deliveries to these distributors, improve their pricing and have a direct channel towards their end-retailers.
In a statement, the B2B startup claims that it had increased revenue and improved businesses of many Nigerian retailers.
“One retailer grew the number of sales transacted by more than 15 times. Another retailer who was barely breaking even and had seen no real growth in 15 years was able to increase her net monthly margin by almost 100 per cent monthly, hire three new employees and is now considering expansion,” the statement read.
When it raised its $3m seed funding, the startup remarked that the investment would allow them to expand TradeDepot’s footprint in Nigeria and development in other countries.
A large part of the company’s operation is in Lagos, Nigeria. It also has in Abuja. The plan was to expand its footprint across these cities and also cover three additional cities, including one in Ghana.
With this new investment, it will continue in that same line of integrating Nigeria’s fragmented informal retail supply chain. Also, it will expand its demand channel to provide more service options to its retailers and new retail categories such as hotels, restaurants and caterers.
According to co-founder and CEO of the four-year-old startup, Onyekachi Izukanne, TradeDepot’s aim is to capture a greater segment of the $1 trillion market. And at the same time, use data derived from working with informal retailers to make informed decisions on how to make their platform better for it’s more than 40,000 retailers.
Additionally, Izukanne says TradeDepot plans to help retailers with their businesses by providing credit facilities and an array of financial products.
“Many retailers do not have the collateral that banks demand but by leveraging their trading relationship with TradeDepot, retailers can access the funds they need to buy more goods, scale their businesses and generate more revenue.”