August 31, 2021
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Nigerian startup Sabi, a B2B marketplace serving Africa’s informal sector, has secured a seed funding round as it announces the milestone of over 150,000 small business users on its platform. 

In stealth mode since last year, Sabi is optimising Africa’s informal trade sector by bringing merchants and resellers into its network with curated business tools and services that help them reach new customers, improve cash flow, and streamline logistics.

Despite being operational in Nigeria for under a year, Sabi merchants have recorded over US$1.2 billion worth of sales via MyShop, its ERP tool, and are on track to transact over US$80 million annualised on MerchBuy, its B2B marketplace, in 2021. Sabi works with over 10,000 agents operating across Nigeria that interface with new merchants and service providers across multiple business categories including agriculture, FMCG, electronics, and financial services.

The startup has now closed a seed round with backing from investors including CRE Ventures, Janngo Capital, Atlantica Ventures, and Waarde Capital. It will use the funding to continue to grow its network across Nigeria, bringing on new merchants and service providers. The company recently established partnerships that will allow it to expand its financial services offerings to include savings accounts and other complementary risk-mitigating financial products.

“Sabi is reaching an underserved yet vibrant market segment and is scaling quickly. The convenience, trust, and quality of our platform have been validated by our merchants and we look forward to onboarding more businesses as we continue to grow,” said Sabi co-founder and chief executive officer (CEO) Anu Adasolum, formerly of Jumia and Rensource.

Fatoumata Ba, managing partner at Janngo Capital, said her company invested in Sabi because the team has a deep understanding of the unique network dynamics of Africa’s informal sector and how to serve the sector at scale without losing the advantage of its decentralised nature.

“Sabi has taken off in Nigeria and we look forward to supporting the company as it continues to platform informal merchants and agents to help them accelerate their business growth,” she said.

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