TradeDepot, Nigeria's B2B eCommerce platform for consumer goods, has announced that it has raised $10 million in a pre-Series B equity round. The funding round was co-led by Partech, International Finance Corporation, Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi) and MSA Capital.

The pre-series B funding round the startup has raised is in addition to the $3 million Series A that it raised in 2018. TradeDepot has said that it will use the new investment to continue its integration of the fragmented informal retail supply chain in Nigeria, expand into other African cities and launch a suite of financial products and credit facilities, to support its retailers.

“We are excited to strengthen our team and welcome on board some incredible strategic investors and partners, as we double down on our mission to digitize and simplify retail distribution for the continent. Africa’s offline retail market is estimated at $1 trillion, and this new investment allows us to capture an even greater segment of that market. We will continue to use data to drive efficiencies and provide an easier stock acquisition service for our 40,000+ retailers, driving down costs for them by negotiating even better deals with our global manufacturing partners, whilst simultaneously providing a better, faster route to market for our suppliers," said Onyekachi Izukanne, Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of TradeDepot.

Consumer goods distribution across Africa

Founded in 2016, TradeDepot is a Nigerian technology startup with an integrated SaaS platform for Consumer Goods distribution in emerging markets. The startup has indicated that it hopes to use the investment funds to expand their footprint in Nigeria and also start developing their business in other markets.

So far, through TradeDepot's SaaS platform, small retailers are able to have a real time view of all prices and discounts available from every major brand; they can directly order products which are then delivered to them as the order is routed to the appropriate nearby depot. At the same time, manufacturers have full visibility over their distribution and can leverage the platform to optimize deliveries to their distributors, improve their pricing and have a direct channel towards their end-retailers.

More than 75% of the retailers on TradeDepot’s platform are female entrepreneurs and TradeDepot will offer mentorship and opportunities to link with domestic and global markets, to further support its predominantly female customer base to grow and expand their businesses.

Helping African retailers grow their businesses

One of the startup's aims is to help retailers grow their businesses, to this effect, TradeDepot says it will be launching a suite of financial products and credit facilities.

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.

“We are proud to continue our partnership with TradeDepot as they continue their work to transform the huge informal markets that are present in Africa. The founders have a wealth of experience that puts them in a great position to execute on their vision, and their approach and results to-date are why we are so excited by the extraordinary entrepreneurs harnessing the power of technology to address issues across the continent," said Tidjane Dème, General Partner at Partech.

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