Egyptian startup SideUp, formerly known as Voo, has raised $1.2 million in seed funding to grow its e-commerce support platform.
The platform, which launched in 2019, offers a range of services for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), including payment processing, logistics support, API integration for shipping, warehousing, fulfillment, and advisory services.
SideUp's founder and CEO, Waleed Rashed, said he was inspired to create the platform after realizing that small merchants were being ignored by large e-commerce service providers.
"There is a lot of talk about how e-commerce is scaling, but still, we are not empowering enough of those (micro, small and medium enterprises) that are selling online," Rashed said. "Merchants need many services and a complete ecosystem to be successful."
The funding round was led by Launch Africa VC and included participation from 500 Global, Riyadh Angels, Alex Angels, Al Tuwaijri Fund, and Saudi angel investor Faisal AlAbdulsalam.
The investment will be used to expand the platform's services and reach, as well as to develop new technology and features.
SideUp currently serves 2,000 e-commerce businesses, which can also access its cash collection service and credit to expand their businesses.
The company's portfolio has grown 30% month-on-month, achieving over $500,000 in Gross Merchandise Volume per month. SideUp has also expanded its operations to Saudi Arabia, where it will be headquartered going forward.
The startup now plans to grow its client base by scaling in Egypt and Saudi Arabia, and expanding to at least two other countries before the end of 2023. This will allow the company to tap into the growing e-commerce sector in different regions.