"We Got Funded!" KSA-Based Soum Raises US$18 Million In A Series A Round Led By Foodtech Unicorn Jahez Soum has already achieved four million downloads within Saudi Arabia and is already seeing traction in the UAE.
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The round also saw the participation of Isometry Capital, a US-headquartered next-generation asset management company. Some of Soum's existing Saudi-based investors that also took part in the round include Khwarizmi Ventures, a venture capital (VC) firm, Alrajhi Partners, a multi-asset class investment firm, and Outliers Venture Capital, an early-stage VC fund.
Founded by Fahad Al Hassan, Bader Almubarak, and Fahad Albassam, Soum is a platform that allows users to monetise their secondhand products by selling them while simultaneously allowing buyers to discover high quality pre-owned items. Since its seed round in 2021, the startup has delivered to and from 150+ cities in Saudi Arabia, and has built a novel unified national marketplace to safely buy, sell, and discover used products within the country.
In the past 18 months, Soum has also witnessed its sales grow by 40x, all while maintaining an impressive customer satisfaction score. With the app available on both the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, Soum has already achieved four million downloads within Saudi Arabia and is already seeing traction in the UAE. As per AlHassan, a combination of consumer and market trends have allowed Soum to enjoy these results.
"Increasing prices of goods, a growing awareness of personal financial planning as well as awareness about reducing waste are just some of the consumer trends that have contributed to Soum's rapid growth so far," AlHassan says. "On the other hand, market trends such as high adoption of e-payments and new regulations for open banking allowing quick and timely payouts to sellers driven -both of which were accelerated by the COVID-19 crisis- have been significant driving factors. Additionally, the recent development in last mile delivery has also significantly allowed for better customer experience within the industry."
Jahez's investment in Soum will certainly be seen as a move that validates the latter's business vision- after all, having attained unicorn status in just five years of its launch, Jahez has been one of the biggest success stories to come out of Saudi Arabia in recent years. "We are impressed by the remarkable achievements of the Soum team, and find that their dedication to innovation and customer satisfaction aligns with Jahez's vision." says Abdulaziz Alhouti, Chief Investment Officer of Jahez. "This investment is a testament to our confidence in Soum's potential to redefine the e-commerce landscape in the Middle East."
With new funds to use, the startup will now aim to expand regionally, as well as beyond its core vertical of secondhand electronics. "The success of this funding round is a testament to the dedication of our entire team," AlHassan says. "With the backing of the region's leading investors, we are excited to kick-off our next stage of growth, while continuing on our mission to transform how customers buy and sell online. We therefore hope to allocate these funds towards developing new products and services that can continue our stellar customer experience, while also expanding into different product categories and geographies."Related: "We Got Funded!" UAE-Based Climatetech Startup Zeroe Raises US$2.2 Million Seed Round