A Karachi-based e-commerce marketplace called Bazaar has raised $30 million in the Series A round — the largest for any Pakistani startup.

Silicon Valley-based early-stage VC Defy Partners and Singapore-based Wavemaker Partners led the latest financing round that was the largest series A in Pakistan.

US-based Acrew Capital, Japan’s Saison Capital, Zayn Capital, and Silicon Valley-based B&Y Venture Partners also participated in the latest funding round.

Bazaar’s existing investors — Indus Valley Capital, Global Founders Capital, Next Billion Ventures, and Alter Global — participated in the Series A round as well.

Several angel investors, including the current and former leaders of Antler, Careem, Endeavor, Gumroad, LinkedIn, and Notion, were also part of the latest financing round.

Founded by Saad Jangda and Hamza Jawaid in the mid-2020, Bazaar’s aim is to build an operating system for traditional retail in Pakistan to allow retailers to connect directly with wholesalers and manufacturers. Its mobile-only B2B e-commerce marketplace has enabled thousands of retailers in Karachi and Lahore to easily procure inventory for their stores.

Bazaar also launched a digital ledger app called Easy Khata earlier this year to help retailers in Pakistan manage their bookkeeping, and stated that both the apps have served more than 750,000 merchants so far.

Bazaar has a loyal customer base with a massive 90 percent retention rate as a result of the focus on simplicity, and delight in its products.

Kamil Saeid, a Partner at Defy Partners, said, “What Bazaar has managed to accomplish in the last year is incredible. We are extremely impressed by the speed and robustness with which they build and deploy. As Defy’s first investment into Pakistan’s burgeoning tech ecosystem, we feel Bazaar is on its way to create a category-defining company for the country”.

Bazaar has also been testing its lending offering — a ‘buy now, pay later’ service for its retailers. It issued a statement that explained that although the service is in private beta mode, the early results have been phenomenal, and that the wallet share of the retailers who have used the service has doubled and the repayment rates are close to 100 percent.

Paul Santos, the Managing Partner at Wavemaker Partners, said, “We’ve been investing in FMCG B2B marketplaces across the region since 2017. After working with Saad and Hamza over the past year, we’ve been impressed by their customer-centric approach to product development and the speed of their learning and execution. It’s no surprise that they’ve received glowing reviews from their customers and partners. We’re excited to support Bazaar as they solidify their market leadership and digitize Pakistan’s retail ecosystem”.

There are at least ten B2B e-commerce marketplaces operating in Pakistan that invested tens of millions (in venture capital) in the industry during the last 12 months.

With this latest financing round, Bazaar has raised about $38 million to date to become the best-funded e-commerce startup and one of the best-funded startups overall in Pakistan. It aims to expand its e-commerce marketplace to more cities in Pakistan, expand its product stack, and scale its financial service in the coming months.

Bazaar’s founders officially stated that it is “going after a massive opportunity with the ultimate aim of creating a generational story in and from Pakistan. In a country with incredible talent and huge market opportunity, it’s about time we create an inspirational story that brings together the country’s best talent who can go on to create many such stories in the future”.