Maad Secures $3.2M Seed Funding Amidst Upheaval in Africa’s B2B E-commerce Sector

What’s this about?

  • Maad, a Senegalese B2B e-commerce startup, secures $3.2 million in debt-equity funding, led by Ventures Platform and other notable investors, to expand its presence in and across the Francophone region.
  • The funding enables Maad to develop further its end-to-end distribution platform, which directly connects informal retailers with FMCG suppliers and addresses critical issues like stockouts and inventory costs.
  • Co-founded by Sidy Niang and Jessica Long, Maad initially started as a data collection provider before transitioning to software development for internal distribution management, ultimately launching its B2B e-commerce platform in September 2021, driven by the success and value observed from its software solutions.

Zoom in…

Maad, a B2B e-commerce startup based in Senegal, has secured $3.2 million in debt-equity funding to bolster its growth in the Western African country and to explore fresh opportunities in the wider Francophone region.

The seed round was led by Ventures Platform, with participation from Seedstars International Ventures, Reflect Ventures, Oui Capital, Launch Africa, Voltron Capital and Alumni Ventures. It raised $900,000 in debt financing from French DFI Proparco and local banks.

Maad’s end-to-end distribution platform enables informal retailers (mom-and-pop stores) to source fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) directly from partner suppliers, tackling key issues they face, including stockouts and the high cost of inventory brought by multiple levels of dealers.

Sidy Niang (CEO) and Jessica Long (COO) launched Maad in 2020, initially as a data collection provider before pivoting to building software to help companies manage their own internal distribution. How FMCG suppliers utilized the software to deal with distribution challenges inspired the launch of the B2B e-commerce business in September 2021.

What they are saying…

Watching our clients use our software for their own distribution was what inspired us. The software was providing a lot of value and we could imagine much more value if we put all the products that small shops buy on the same platform,” Niang said.

Customers make orders through the startup’s call centre, field agents, or the app, which accounts for the bulk (75%) of the orders. The startup then fulfils them from its warehouses using its in-house delivery service to reduce costs and ensure the consistency of its services.

We decided to bring all of logistics…the reason that we do that is just it’s a low margin business. We think that this is the way to provide good service and to meet the reliability needs of clients. I don’t think that we would be able to offer a similar service if we relied on a third-party provider,” said Long.


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