Airlift raises $10m in Series A-1 financing as it ventures into grocery delivery

Published July 1, 2020
"Airlift’s Series A-1 round marks one of the largest capital investments in the region," says the startup's CEO. — Airlift/File
"Airlift’s Series A-1 round marks one of the largest capital investments in the region," says the startup's CEO. — Airlift/File

Bus ride-hailing service Airlift has raised an impressive $10 million in Series A-1 financing, taking its total investment to $24.1m, its co-founder and CEO Usman Gul said in a statement.

"At a time of mass turbulence in capital markets, Airlift’s Series A-1 round marks one of the largest capital investments in the region," Gul said in a statement posted on Medium. "We are thrilled to partner with investors who share our vision for building decentralised platforms to introduce easier, faster and more efficient ways of moving people and goods around urban ecosystems."

The investment round was led by San Francisco-based Quiet Capital and also included TrueSight Ventures (London), RT Ventures (London), Shorooq Partners (Abu Dhabi), and ACE Capital (Taiwan), as well as local investors. The startup's previous investors, First Round Capital (San Francisco), Fatima Gobi Ventures (Pakistan) and Indus Valley Capital (Pakistan), chipped in as well.

Gul also announced Airlift's new venture into grocery delivery, called Airlift Grocer which is "a 45-minute delivery service for all household essentials".

“In the last few months, we have streamlined our processes so much that we now have the capability to deliver groceries within 45 minutes and with high order accuracy,” Airlift Technologies’ Executive Director, Syed Mehr Haider, told Profit.

Airlift, which started its decentralised mass transit operations just 11 months ago, had raised $12m in investments in November last year by leading investors in what was Pakistan’s largest Series-A round for a start-up.

It started off as a smart bus service that offers stop-to-stop public transport services on selected routes across Lahore and Karachi. It was founded last year by Gul, along with five other partners, using $50,000 pooled in by himself and family.

The bus ride-hailing service had suspended its operations in March, when the novel coronavirus started to spread in the country, leading provincial governments to impose restrictions on public transport.

"Given the Covid-19 threat, Airlift is committed to keeping our transit operations on pause until the situation stabilises. Our team is excited to resume transit operations once the worst of the pandemic is behind us," Gul said in his statement.

Now you can follow Dawn Business on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook for insights on business, finance and tech from Pakistan and across the world.

Opinion

Editorial

Mianwali raid
Updated 02 Feb, 2023

Mianwali raid

The military needs to share intelligence with civilian agencies to neutralise the militant menace nationwide.
Corruption unlimited
02 Feb, 2023

Corruption unlimited

PAKISTAN’S consistent slide on Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index over the last several...
Women police officers
02 Feb, 2023

Women police officers

IN a heartening development, a second female police officer has been appointed as DPO in Attock, weeks after the...
Road to perdition
Updated 01 Feb, 2023

Road to perdition

This is also the time of reckoning for those who sowed the seeds of a disastrous policy against militants.
Transport tragedies
01 Feb, 2023

Transport tragedies

TWO tragedies over the weekend illustrate the weak protocols governing the safety of transport in Pakistan. In fact,...
Disqualifying Jam Awais
01 Feb, 2023

Disqualifying Jam Awais

IT appears that there may be some kind of small punishment after all for PPP lawmaker Jam Awais, who was pardoned ...