UAE-based on-demand truck aggregator TruKKer, has raised a $10 million strategic venture debt from San Francisco-based specialty lending firm Partners for Growth (PFG). This marks the largest-ever venture-debt in the Middle East and North Africa region (Mena) tech history, as well as the first for PFG in the region.
Established in 2016, TruKKer claims to have a fleet of over 25,000 trucks and 500 B2B customers on its platform, including multinational consumer products companies. The newly-raised funds will be used to finance the working capital needs required for the instant payment of thousands of transporters operating on TruKKer’s network.
It currently employs over 175 people in UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt, and officially operates in five countries in Mena. It also plans to expand to other markets, starting with Pakistan.
“We are disrupting a very fragmented industry, both operationally and commercially, by using advanced data science and technology tools. One of our essential capabilities is the ability to finance instant payments to the small transporters and owner-operators, while offering standard credit terms for enterprise clients,” said Amit Agarwal, TruKKer’s group chief financial officer (CFO).
“We have a very diverse and high-quality client base with three years of consistent payment cycles. Having demonstrated performance and substantial growth, financing our expanding working capital needs with a structured debt facility was an obvious next step for us. We are very happy and proud to have a world-class institution like PFG on board,” he added.
The trucking industry employs thousands of entrepreneurs as owner-operator drivers across the world, with the Middle East especially seeing a significant increase in digital freight.
“TruKKer offers a very interesting proposition for a debt fund to support a diverse and growing portfolio of debtors with a custom facility tailored to enable the company’s rapid expansion. We are very excited about working with the TruKKer team to provide capital to help them scale their impressive platform harnessing the trend of increasing technological adoption to deliver efficiencies across the massive freight industry across the Middle East,” said Jason Geogatos, PFG’s managing director.
“We will continue to work with TruKKer to support their rapid growth and hope to work with other emerging technology companies as we get familiar with the Mena markets, and build strong relationships in the region,” he added.
Today’s raise comes a year after the company raised $23 million in one of the region’s largest Series A investments. The round was led by Saudi Technology Ventures (STV), International Finance Corporation (IFC), Endeavor Catalyst Fund and Middle East Venture Partners (MEVP), with participation from Riyad TAQNIA Fund, Oman Technology Fund, Iliad Partners, and Shorooq Ventures.