Truck Lagbe at a glance
- The idea won 2017 Bangladesh government's award
- Founded in 2017 by two school friends
- Early-stage investments were worth $1.75million
- Hong Kong-based Mount Parker Ventures and Aria Group are existing investors
- Registered 50,000 trucks
- 5,000 enterprise customers
- Cost of transportation reduced by 17%
The International Finance Corporation (IFC), private sector investment wing of the World Bank Group, is planning to invest $3 million or more than Tk25 crore in Bangladeshi digital trucking platform Truck Lagbe Inc.
"Truck Lagbe is in the process of raising Series A financing of $5 million. IFC is proposing an equity investment into the company of up to $3 million," the IFC said in its disclosures on February 1.
The funding will support the expansion of the company in the domestic market along with the introduction of ancillary services for partners, it added.
Anayet Rashid, co-founder and chief executive officer of Truck Lagbe, told The Business Standard that such investments required scrutiny of the company, and the IFC and a local venture capital investor had already done that.
"No deal has been finalised yet," he said.
The award-winning startup is awaiting "Series A" funding following the initial investments in 2019.
Series A funding comes after initial seed investments to help a startup expand its business further.
Hong Kong-based early-stage venture capital firms – Mount Parker Ventures and Aria Group – provided Truck Lagbe with the key portion of $1.75million in seed investments.
Mount Parker is the investor of Asia's first app-based goods delivery platform GoGoVan which already extended its services to over 300 cities and registered 80 lakh drivers under its network.
Aria Group's portfolio includes on-demand-same-day-delivery-service-platform LaLaMove, which expanded into two dozen markets across Asia and America, including the United States of America.
The concept of Truck Lagbe won a competition organised by the government in 2017. Two Bangladeshi school friends -- Anayet Rashid and Mir Hossain Ekram -- founded the startup in the same year to offer the first-ever app-based truck hiring services.
Truck Lagbe gained more popularity after winning the Bangladesh Brand Forum Best Technology Innovation Award in 2018. It first launched services for individual clients for shifting homes within the city and nationwide, and later began to provide enterprise solutions.
The home-grown platform already registered around 50,000 vehicles, ranging from small pickup vans to large lorries. It received good responses from an increasing number of individual customers, while more than 5,000 businesses are now taking services offered by Truck Lagbe, the CEO said.
"On average, we reduced the cost of transportation by 17% as there is no middleman in hiring a truck," Anayet said.
Currently, Truck Kothay and Shohoz Truck are competing with Truck Lagbe.
The Business Standard reached out to the IFC Dhaka office, but it did not provide any further details of the investment plan.
The IFC invested $10 million into the once financial services startup bKash, now a fintech unicorn, in early 2013. The top grocery e-commerce Chaldal also received $3 million IFC investments in 2018.