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Impact investor Aavishkaar strikes overseas e-commerce bet
Photo Credit: VCCircle

Impact investment firm Aavishkaar Venture Management Services Ltd has pumped Rs 27 crore (around $3.8 million) into Bangladesh-based e-commerce company Sindabad.com.

This marks Aavishkar’s third investment in Bangladesh and the ninth from its South and Southeast Asia-focused investment vehicle, Aavishkaar Frontier Fund.

Sindabad.com, which was launched in 2016, offers business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce services in Bangladesh. It provides offices, factories and other organisations with a platform to make manufacturing and consumption purchases with direct-to-office deliveries.

Operated by Zero Gravity Ventures Ltd, Sindabad counts leading financial institutions, pharmaceutical firms and local conglomerates among its clients.

“With the greater investment portfolio of Aavishkaar Ventures, we are looking to incorporate best practices and future collaboration with similar companies and startups in the region who have already succeeded in the B2B space,” Asif Zahir, Sindabad’s managing director, said in a statement

The company has around 250 employees, three warehouses and its own delivery fleet that caters to various parts of Dhaka.

”Aavishkaar believes Sindabad.com has the potential to rewrite the B2B transaction model for corporates and SMEs in Bangladesh,” said Sanchayan Chakraborty, partner at Aavishkaar.

Aavishkaar Frontier Fund has struck four investments in Indonesia, two in Sri Lanka and three in Bangladesh. Among its portfolio firms are US- and Indonesia-based seafood firm North Atlantic Inc, Sri Lankan food processing company MA's Foods and Bangladesh-based payment solutions provider CloudWell Ltd.

Aavishkaar recently said that it was planning to raise $300 million (Rs 2,100 crore) to invest in Southeast Asian countries.

The new fund will add muscle to the $75 million Aavishkaar Frontier Fund and will make investments in Vietnam, Indonesia, Myanmar and Laos. It will steer clear of India and China.

The impact investor is separately raising money for two other vehicles -- the $200-million domestic Aavishkaar Bharat Fund and a $150-million Africa fund.

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