Saudi on-demand delivery startup Shgardi raises seven-figure investment from Mad’a

Saudi on-demand delivery startup Shgardi has raised an investment from Riyadh-based Mad’a Investment Company, the investment firm announced today in a statement to MENAbytes. Mad’a did not disclose the size of the investment but MENAbytes has learned that it is a seven-figure USD deal.

Founded just last year by Abdulaziz Al-Mousa who previously ran a marketing agency, Shgardi is a Glovo-like on-demand delivery app that allows users in different cities across the Kingdom to order anything and have it delivered to their doorstep. The startup uses a network of freelance drivers who on behalf of customers go to different stores to buy the requested products and deliver them to the customer’s doorstep.

Shgardi claims that it is serving a million customers in the Kingdom and has over 300,000 drivers in its network. The startup did not provide the details about these numbers but it is very likely that these are the users and drivers that have registered on its platform to date. Shgardi also said that most of its drivers are Saudis.

On-demand delivery esp. food delivery has always been big in Saudi with players like Delivery Hero (through its local subsidiary Hunger Station) enjoying great success in the country but Covid-19 has accelerated the growth even further and investors are obviously taking a note.

In the last three months, we’ve seen Saudi grocery delivery startup Nana raise $18 million and Saudi food delivery startup Jahez raise $36 million (which also included the sale of secondaries).

Abdulaziz Al-Mousa, the founder and CEO of Shgardi said that the investment will help them add new services (and features) for their users across the Kingdom. The startup also plans to further improve the customer experience, double its growth and expansion by entering new markets by the end of the year, and increase job opportunities for Saudis.

Abdulaziz’s firm in addition to indirectly competing with the specialized food delivery and grocery delivery players in the market is also taking on Mrsool, a similar Saudi startup that is backed by STV and Raed Ventures.

Mad’a Investment Company is a private equity firm. It has been active in the technology space with investments like Babysouk and HyperPay but it is very rare for Mad’a to invest at early-stage. Its CEO Abdullah Abdulaziz Al-Othaim hinted that they were impressed by early success of the startup, “We are excited to see the outstanding success achieved by Shgardi to date and are certain that this investment round will enable them to further expand their operations. Mad’a Investment Company seeks to support entrepreneurial projects in the region, improve the business environment and provide more job opportunities for young national cadres.”

Zubair Naeem Paracha
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