DealCart, a social commerce startup, said on Thursday that it raised $4.5 million in a pre-seed funding round led by Shorooq Partners just four months after starting operations.

According to a press release, the round also included participation from Fatima Gobi Ventures, Vibe Capital, 500 Global, i2i Ventures, Julian Shapiro, Rally Cap Ventures, Alex Lazarow, and several strategic angel investors.

The company, which describes itself as a group buying platform that provides underserved communities with access to affordable daily essential products in a gamified and interactive manner, said it would use the funding to further product development and team expansion.

"This is one the largest investments in the Middle East North Africa and Pakistan (MENAP) region for early-stage startups and comes just four months after the company’s establishment in March 2022," the press release said.

The handout noted that adoption of e-commerce remains low among middle and lower-middle income segments, which constitutes the majority of Pakistan’s 220 million population.

"The main reason being that e-commerce marketplaces today primarily serve higher income groups, offering premium electronics, fashion apparel, and various goods and services through quick commerce.

"Recognising that the majority of the population values and prioritises the affordability of daily essential products, DealCart co-founders Haider Raza and Ammar Naveed are addressing this unmet ecommerce need through its 'buy together and save together' model, which allows users to buy in groups, as well as share deals on messaging platforms and social media," the press release said.

The company went on to say that this empowers customers with the ability to place larger orders as a group, unlocking lower prices for all, while providing a new, engaging and community-centric way to shop.

"DealCart also aims to increase nationwide awareness and visibility for locally manufactured brands through its platform," it added.

Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb congratulated the startup on its achievement. She congratulated the owners and wished them luck for their venture.

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