Pakistan Digest: TelloTalk raises seed capital; Fatima Ventures leads $450K seed round in PriceOye

Lahore, Pakistan. Photo: Pixabay

Pakistani messaging platform TelloTalk raises $1.6 million seed round from SparkLabs Fintech and i2i Ventures; while PriceOye raises $450,000 in seed funding led by Fatima Ventures.

Pakistani messaging platform TelloTalk raises $1.6m

TelloTalk, a Pakistan-based messaging platform, has raised $1.6 million in seed funding from a consortium of international and local investors.

Those who participated in the round include UAE-based ALM Holdings, Asian accelerator SparkLabs Fintech, US-based One Market Capital, Hong Kong-based Cocoon Ignite Ventures, and Pakistani venture capital firms, i2i Ventures and TPL e-Ventures.

According to a statement, TelloTalk will invest the capital in expanding user acquisition, engagement, activation. It will also invest in scaling its infrastructure and product development.

Launched in 2017, TelloTalk is a localised messaging app offering a variety of services across news content, games, radio, music and radio. It caters closely to the Pakistani market, offering localised products on its platform, similar to what KaKaoTalk (South Korea), WeChat (China) and Line (Japan) do in their respective markets.

TelloTalk is available in 6 out of 11 regional languages in Pakistan including English, Urdu and Sindhi, and has about two dozen media partnerships and 16 brand clients on its platform.

“In our experience, localized messaging platforms can be highly successful in nations that have large populations, with strong cultures, and well-defined digital borders. Just like WeChat in China and KakaoTalk in Korea, TelloTalk is uniquely positioned to be that app for Pakistan with a hyper-localised messaging platform that enables connectivity, content sharing, commerce, and corporate services,” said Sameer Chishty, partner at SparkLabs FinTech.

Moving forward, TelloTalk plans to enter into e-commerce, allowing its users to make purchases online on its app. It has 75,000 monthly active users on its platform and plans to drive this to 1 million by 2020.

PriceOye raises $450,000 seed round led by Fatima Ventures

PriceOye, a Pakistan-based e-commerce aggregator, has secured $450,000 in seed funding led by Fatima Ventures. The round was also joined by local venture capital (VC) firm Artistic Ventures, and Kinetico.

According to a statement, PriceOye will invest the capital to improve the e-commerce user experience, drive transactions on its platform.

“We are solving a definite problem for online shoppers,” says Adnan Shaffi, co-founder and CEO of PriceOye. “An overwhelming majority of shoppers make up their mind after visiting at least three different online stores. We’ve designed PriceOye to be the only website you need for gathering important information on your next purchase.”

Price comparison platforms have become very relevant at a time when the Pakistani e-commerce market is witnessing grow.

“They become instrumental in driving consumer decisions which becomes extremely important to all the eCommerce players. We truly believe that is the winning team and we are proud to be investing in PriceOye,” Ali Mukhtar, CEO, Fatima Ventures.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.