Yassir, an Algerian company that offers on-demand services including ride-hailing and last-mile delivery, has acquired a $30 million Series a round of funding. A broad number of venture capitalists and angel investors contributed to the funding. WndrCo, DN Capital, Kismet Capital, Spike Ventures, Quiet Capital, Endeavor Catalyst, FJ Labs, VentureSouq, Nellore Capital, and Moving Capital are among the venture capital firms involved. Cleo Sham of Uber, Thomas Layton of Upwork, Opentable, and Metaweb, Rohan Monga of Gojek, and Hannes Graah of Spotify and Revolut are among the angel investors.
Most of the investors from the company’s previously announced $13.25 million seed round also participated, according to a statement. After getting a Ph.D. from Stanford and working in Silicon Valley for most of his career, CEO Noureddine Tayebi returned to Algeria to get active in the country’s emerging tech sector, launch a firm, and develop technological talent in the Maghreb area (Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia).
Due to a lack of faith in incumbents and inefficient banking systems, the majority of individuals in French-speaking Africa are unbanked. Tayebi believed that offering on-demand services — which meet necessities while also building confidence in order to provide payment services — was the spark for financial inclusion in the region.
In 2017, he co-founded Yassir alongside Mahdi Yettou. Because the cities it targeted had dense populations and ineffective transportation options, the business began with ride-hailing services. Yassir went on to offer last-mile delivery services, establishing a multi-sided marketplace that connects drivers, couriers, retailers, suppliers, and wholesalers with individual consumers. The aim, according to Tayebi, is to leverage the marketplace concept to provide payment services to all parties involved while also creating a super app.
“By giving more of a ‘banking as a platform’ solution where everyday services are at the center of it all via a super-app marketplace, our approach to tackling the unbanked population problem is unique in the area,” he told.
“Such services not only develop confidence for all parties in the marketplace, but they also serve as conduits for delivering these payment services, which we believe is the best way for the area.” The majority of our rivals are on-demand services— either such as ride-hailing or last-mile deliveries— or such as payment-only solutions. This provides us an advantage over them as we establish the network, channels, and trust that are all necessary for large-scale adoption of payment services.”
Since its inception four years ago, Yassir has grown at an exponential rate. It was the first Algerian business to accept into Y Combinator’s winter batch last year. In terms of traction, the platform today has over 3 million users and 40,000 partners across all of its markets. According to Tayebi, Yassir makes money by charging a commission on the services it provides.
Yassir is now the most financed company in Algeria, as well as one of the most funded in the Maghreb and MENA region, thanks to this round of investment. Tayebi is unafraid to admit that his organization aspires to regional supremacy in its field. Yassir also intends to expand his market share outside of the area, focusing on Sub-Saharan Africa and other “important geographies.”
The investment will be used to do this, as well as to consolidate growth in the company’s existing markets by introducing new products and upgrading existing ones. Yassir also intends to triple the size of its engineering department, which the company is committed to establishing locally.
“We are a 100 percent local champion, even in terms of tech talent, since we want to empower and employ local tech talent in any location we operate in.” “We want a full-fledged regional success model,” Tayebi stated. In a statement, WndrCo partner Anthony Saleh remarked, “Yassir is a natural progression of enterprises seen everywhere in the world.” “From the minute we met the team, we saw an opportunity to enter a massive market with a solution that incorporated the best of what we’d seen elsewhere.” We’re ecstatic to be a part of this turbo-charged adventure.”