Conektr, a Dubai-based digital lower trade, groceries, and HORECA marketplace platform has raised AED 3M ($800K) in a dual-tranche Pre-Series A round from Auris Investments, an investment vehicle co-sponsored by Faber Capital’s holding company and several affiliated investors.
Founded by Madhusudhanan Janakarajan, and commencing its operations and product depth development in 2019, the marketplace platform uses technology to bring the GCC Lower Trade Groceries & HORECA segment into the 21st century.
Conektr integrates the lower trade segment’s fragmented value chain by providing a data-enabled digital marketplace platform connecting brands, distributors, and wholesalers on retailers, optimizing marketing, ordering & logistics inefficiencies inherent to this segment.
Janakarajan, CEO, said “In a society as tech-forward as the UAE, with over $36B gross online spending in 2018 alone, the fact that two-thirds of distributors do not use a CRM seems unthinkable.” Since its launch in early-2019, Conektr has achieved significant penetration – Conektr’s platform is today used by 4000+ retail outlets and offers 1800+ SKUs.
“Even though this segment benefits from the convenience of next-door proximity and still retains its traditional place in the shopping habits of the UAE’s population, it suffers from the inefficiency of fragmented ordering, delivery and lack of technology enablement for its target end-customers.” continued Janakarajan. “Optimizing the structure, logistics, and marketing inefficiencies of this segment will benefit the entire value chain, but the real value-creation we see is in creating a consolidated and data-permeable ecosystem.” referring to Conektr’s development of “Conektr Hub”.
Conektr is deploying the funds to add depth to its suite of B2B solutions, making the technology platform more robust and further developing Conektr Hub.