The Kenyan tech-logistics startup Sendy has completed an equity investment in Kamtar, a Francophone logistics platform to accelerate its next phase of business growth by launching operations in West Africa and expanding its footprint beyond its current operations in Eastern Africa.
For the funding round, it partnered with Mobility 54 Investment SAS, Toyota Tsusho Corporation and CFAO’s corporate venture capital arm, to acquire a significant stake in the logistics company.
“For its cross-continent expansion, Sendy is focusing on strategic greenfield and mergers and acquisitions investments with partners in the supply chain and logistics sector,” reads the release.
Sendy will use its technology, expertise, and a broader range of services to bolster Kamtar’s capabilities in Cote d’Ivoire and Senegal, where it currently operates, and to expand to other French-speaking West African countries by the end of 2022.
Mesh Alloys, Sendy founder and CEO said, “This strategic investment will help us achieve Sendy’s long-term goal of expanding our West African presence and supporting our current customers looking to expand or enter the West African market. We share a joint vision with Kamtar to make it easier to trade across Africa and we’re looking forward to the opportunity to collaborate with Kamtar on product development and technology solutions for customers across the region.”
Kamtar is a digital logistics startup with 5,000 drivers on its network that connects SMEs and corporate businesses to truckers, allowing for effective delivery operations and cost savings by eliminating intermediaries. It is also developing a range of value-added services to help its drivers access cheaper rates on all kinds of services linked to their activity such as gas, insurance, spare parts or financing solutions. Kamtar is owned by Saviu Ventures, an Africa-focused investor with a focus on early-stage startups in Francophone Africa.
Arthur Thuet, Saviu Ventures co-founder and managing partner and Kamtar’s president, said, “Our goal is to combine the best of both companies to become the #1 freight and logistics provider in the Francophone region”
Rapid economic expansion, the advent of e-commerce, and the launch of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), which began in January 2021, have all contributed to the demand for efficient logistics solutions in Africa. According to the World Bank, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA) is expected to increase intracontinental trade from $294 billion to $532 billion by 2035, and the logistics sector will play a key role in these developments because goods will need to be exchanged efficiently across country borders.
The logistics sector has faced market inefficiencies that have led to higher costs of moving goods leading to an evolution of tech-led logistics start-ups.
Sendy’s cross-continental operations have served over 100,000 enterprises and individuals through an on-demand fleet and completed millions of deliveries thus far. It recently grew to help meet the needs of its customers across Africa through fulfilment, freight and supply, providing first-to-last-mile delivery for packages and cargo, as well as everything in between.