Nigeria’s Kobo360, accepted into YC’s 2018, has raised $1.2 million. The logistics startup built on the aggregation construct will use the capital to expand its business and introduce a new product – Kobo Wealth Investment Network (KoboWIN). KoboWIN is a crowd-invest, vehicle financing program which will make it possible for drivers to finance new trucks through citizen investors.
Kobo360 was accepted into YC’s 2018 class and gained some working capital in the form of $1.2M in pre-seed funding round led by Western Technology Investment announced this week. Lagos based Verod Capital Management also joined to support Kobo360.
The startup — with an Uber -like app that connects Nigerian truckers to companies with freight needs — will use the funds to pay drivers online immediately after successful hauls.
Kobo360 is also launching the Kobo Wealth Investment Network, or KoboWIN—a crowd-invest, vehicle financing program. Through it Kobo drivers can finance new trucks through citizen investors and pay them back directly (with interest) over a 60 month period.
I wrote about this company last year calling it ‘Nigeria’s best logistic company”. Its business model is asset-light (if not asset-free) and is engineered to use customer service to deepen competitive advantage. This news has simply validated the points I made about its vision.
Kobo operates under the principle of Aggregation Construct which depends on network orchestration where it works as an arbiter for many partners and customers. With this model, the customer experience becomes a key part of its business. It does not have ships, planes and trucks delivering services from U.S. to Nigeria and beyond. But it has a technology to simplify trade and commerce. It has got happy customers who do think its services are even better than firms like DHL. Interestingly, companies like DHL make it possible for Kobo to serve those customers.
This company is doing great – innovation always wins: “Kobo360 has served 324 businesses, aggregated a fleet of 5480 drivers, and moved 37.6M kilograms of cargo since 2017, per company stats. Top clients include Honeywell, Olam, Unilever, and DHL.” Congrats to Obi and Ife.