Plug and Play increases investment in Morocco’s Chari
- Morocco-based B2B e-commerce platform Chari has secured a second round of investment from Plug and Play. The amount invested was not disclosed.
- Plug and Play’s investment in Chari is part of its inaugural cohort in Morocco in partnership with the Mohammed VI Polytechnic University and Startgate.
- Founded in 2020 by Ismael Belkhayat and Sophia Alj, Chari, an e-commerce platform for FMCG products, lets retailers purchase large quantities of inventory items directly from suppliers.
- Last February, Chari raised $1 million from Orange Ventures.
Plug and Play is thrilled to announce its second investment in Chari, the leading B2B e-commerce platform for FMCG products in Morocco and Francophone Africa.
“Morocco’s startup scene is growing, with more and more companies securing funding at more advanced stages of growth. We’re thrilled to be part of this dynamic ecosystem, and we’re particularly excited about Chari who first caught our attention as part of our inaugural cohort in Morocco in partnership with the Mohammed VI Polytechnic University and Startgate. Ismael and Sophia are stellar entrepreneurs, and we’re confident that they will achieve great things.” notes Aziz El Hachem, North-Africa Director at Plug and Play.
The majority of developing countries' FMCG markets are characterized by a scattered network of independent traditional proximity stores that represent around 80% of the consumption market. We first invested in Chari in 2020 because we knew they had found a significant opportunity to revolutionize the way these stores operate and replenish their stock.
Currently, the replenishment of stock for small grocery stores is done through wholesalers and distributor agents, which is inefficient and time-consuming. This results in a lack of data for FMCG brands to evaluate their marketing campaigns and strategies for the final consumers. - something of paramount importance to these brands. Chari is the first purchasing centre for FMCG products for traditional local shops, and through its e-commerce application, it offers the possibility to order products at lower prices and has them delivered within 24 hours, allowing the FMCG brands to track their sales on the traditional trade.
Chari has demonstrated strong traction in the market, having already established itself as the leading B2B e-commerce platform for FMCG products in Morocco, with a clear vision to become a regional player and build additional services, which will provide the company with opportunities to capture further market share and create additional revenue streams such as embedded fintech. Chari has recently become the first VC-backed startup to receive a payment license from the Central Bank of Morocco.
We are excited to continue investing in Sophia and Ismael’s vision. With prior experience in building and scaling startups, we believe they are the right founders to build this company. We are confident that after raising from a great line-up of investors including Y Combinator, Rocket Internet, Endeavor Catalyst, Global Founders Capital, Harvard University Management Company, Orange Ventures, and Verod-Kepple, among others, Chari will continue to grow and establish itself as a market leader in the FMCG e-commerce space in Africa. We are thrilled to be a part of this success story and to renew our commitment to support Sophia, Ismael, and the Chari team in their journey.