Pakistani startups finally joined the big league, collectively raising a record $540 million from 2021 to 2022 first quarter across 99 deals.
Pakistan has witnessed exponential growth in its startup sector, which raised $174 million across 17 deals during the first quarter of 2022 alone, according to a Deal Flow Tracker by Invest2Innovate (i2i).
If the record of first quarter is compared to the first quarter of 2021, it is an increase of 776% from $20 million and an increase of 140% compared to the fourth quarter of 2021 from $71 million.
During the first three months of the year, Pakistani startups raised half of the total funding raised in 2021. From 2015 to 2022 so far, Pakistani startups have raised a total of $728 million across 272 deals.
In 2021, Pakistani startups earned $365.87 million in VC funding, which is more than every previous year combined. At the end of the first quarter of 2022, the sector had got seven times as much finance as in the first quarter of 2021.
The massive boom in its tech startup sector also caught the fancy of some of the world’s largest VC investors. Tiger Global for the first time invested in Pakistan in December and has since funded at least two more startups.
The founders of i2i Ventures, a $15 million Pakistan-focused venture capital (VC) fund- Kalsoom Lakhani and Misbah Naqvi- are now signing many deals every quarter.
While discussing international investors for making investments in Pakistan, Lakhani said there are a number of international investors looking at Pakistan right now including Tiger Global, Sequoia Capital, and Dragoneer Investment Group.
She further added that in a number of early emerging markets, most companies, particularly the ones that are venture backable and raising backing, come up in the B2B or B2C e-commerce, fintech, and logistics- three sectors often grow in relation to one another.