A truck in Pakistan

Across Pakistan, hundreds of thousands of truck drivers are hired by corporate clients to transport goods throughout the country. The vast majority of the country’s trucking companies are family-owned small businesses that own just a few trucks and often lack the resources and financial support needed to strengthen their businesses. Now, technology is opening pathways to growth within the traditional logistics industry in Pakistan.

Trukkr is a Pakistan-based startup focused on solving the problems faced by micro, small, and medium sized (MSME) trucking companies and their corporate clients. Trukkr is our second investment in Pakistan and our first in the shipping and logistics industry worldwide. The company’s digital solutions are ready to revolutionize Pakistan’s trucking sector and open opportunities for drivers and businesses in the industry.

Speed bumps for MSME truckers and their clients

Pakistan’s trucking sector is stuck in the past. Most trucking businesses in the country are small operations that work with just two or three of their own trucks. They often have to cover operational expenses from their own pockets, as they can wait up to 90 days for clients to pay them for deliveries. This working capital crunch means that small-scale truckers cannot afford to take on new jobs, preventing them from growing their businesses in a scalable way.

Large corporations are also facing many obstacles. They cannot access technologically enabled tools that can map their end-to-end logistics processes. Trukkr found that the most significant challenges corporations face include a lack of data on the movement of goods, high incidences of pilferage, and difficulty finding trucks for spot consignments, among others.

Pakistan ranked 122 out of 160 in the World Bank’s 2018 logistics performance index, falling below other countries in the region, including India and Bangladesh, and achieved low scores in tracking, tracing, and timeliness. Trukkr is working hard to provide solutions to these key areas. By improving the sector across Pakistan, they’re also opening a wealth of opportunity for the company’s future and growth.

Delivering solutions for truckers in Pakistan

To solve these pain points, Trukkr has created an app that Pakistan’s trucking businesses can use to track trip-related expenses and invoices. Trukkr then uses the in-platform trucker data to underwrite financial services, beginning with working capital loans, for these MSMEs who otherwise lack access to financing. In the future, Trukkr aims to leverage platform data to design a full suite of digital financial services and products for its customers, including more sophisticated loan products, insurance products, and more.

On the other end, corporations use Trukkr’s Transport Management System (TMS) to track their shipments, post open jobs, and improve efficiency in moving their products. Both sets of stakeholders – truckers and shippers – meet in the middle on Trukkr’s platform, providing seamless and digitized communication between all parties involved.

In the driver’s seat

Accion Venture Lab first found out about Trukkr from Mishal Adamjee, one of its five co-founders. The company’s co-founder and CEO, Sheryar Bawany, has more than ten years of experience in Pakistan’s supply chain and logistics industry. His deep operational background working on the ground in the sector has allowed him to scale up the company’s customer acquisition strategy quickly.

Ali Reza Haji, co-founder and CFO, has worked across both finance and shipping and logistics globally. He previously worked at Nomura in London before returning home to Pakistan.

Kasra Zunnaiyyer, Trukkr’s chief technology officer and another of the company’s co-founders, graduated in computer science at Karachi University, in Pakistan, before studying leadership and innovation at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Trukkr’s CBO, co-founder Waqas Khatri, has a background in engineering and biotechnology and excelled as the director of strategy and new initiatives at chemical company Ittehad Chemicals Limited before joining Trukkr.

The founders’ deep experience across their specific focus areas, which include supply chain and logistics, finance, and corporate strategy, is impressive. We appreciate their thoughtful approach, ease of communication, and honesty when admitting to challenges, and we are excited to partner with them.

Hear more about Trukkr from co-founder Mishal Adamjee:

Roadmap to success

With Pakistan’s trucking industry still largely analog, Trukkr sees a huge opportunity to digitize the industry and impact its stakeholders. Furthermore, as recent flooding devastated the country and displaced millions of people, efforts to rebuild will require streamlined logistics management, and Trukkr has only seen demand for its products increase in the months since the flooding began in August. With its new funding, the company plans to expand its business throughout Pakistan and grow its base of MSME truckers, and their corporate clients, in the process.

The coronavirus pandemic showed how much the world relies on global supply chains. At Accion Venture Lab, we want to bet on a company striving to tackle inefficiencies in a market filled with opportunities.

Trukkr is driving towards a bright future as the one-stop shop for Pakistan’s trucking industry, and we could not be more excited to join them on this journey.

Read more about Trukkr, the newest Accion Venture Lab portfolio company, in Reuters.

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