Pakistan-based social commerce platform DealCart announced Thursday that it has raised a $4.5 million pre-seed funding round led by Shorooq Partners.

The round also saw participation from Fatima Gobi Ventures, Vibe Capital, 500 Global, i2i Ventures, Julian Shapiro, Rally Cap Ventures, Alex Lazarow, and several strategic angel investors, DealCart said in a statement.

DealCart, a group buying platform that provides underserved communities with access to affordable daily essential products in a gamified and interactive manner, will use the funding to further product development and team expansion.

“Pakistan has recently seen a surge in social media users, a phenomenon that generally precedes these users transacting online for their daily needs. DealCart seeks to use this opportunity to introduce our group buying platform with the aim to enable more people to get access to their favourite brands at extremely affordable prices,

“With our target market spending upwards of 50 percent of their household income on groceries and essentials, DealCart provides the already inflation burdened Pakistani consumer much needed relief,” said Haider Raza, Co-Founder of DealCart.

DealCart Co-Founder Ammar Naveed said the firm’s focus from day one has been the long-term commercial sustainability of the company, and it wants to create a business which has solid foundations and is aligned with the new reality of the global financial markets,

“We plan to do this by having a super lean cost structure, while expanding and growing the business primarily through our technology,” said Ammar Naveed, Co-Founder of DealCart.

Established in March 2022, DealCart is reinventing e-commerce in Pakistan. The firm aims to provide first-time internet users with access to affordable products through a gamified and interactive group shopping experience.

Recognizing that the majority of the population values and prioritises the affordability of daily essential products, Haider Raza and Ammar Naveed are addressing this unmet ecommerce need through its ‘buy together and save together’ model, which allows users to buy in groups, as well as share deals on messaging platforms and social media.

This empowers customers with the ability to place larger orders as a group, unlocking lower prices for all, while providing a new, engaging and community-centric way to shop. DealCart also aims to increase nationwide awareness and visibility for locally manufactured brands through its platform.

“We are humbled to be partnering with DealCart and to be taking part in the take-off of this incredible journey. The founders’ customer-centric approach and strong commitment to growth, make us certain they are the right partner to back in Pakistan’s first group buying app,

“Given their deep expertise in consumer tech, we have no doubt that this will be a unique success story and are very excited to see what the future holds for DealCart,” said Omer Zabit, Principal at Shorooq Partners.

Fatima Gobi Ventures’ General Partner Ali Mukhtar said Given the rising cost of living across the world, there is greater demand for solutions like DealCart that are enabling access to affordable daily necessities.

“We have high conviction in the team and model as it fits perfectly within FGV’s investment strategy, which is to fund high-growth tech companies that have the ability to generate scalable impact. We look forward to supporting Haider, Ammar and their team, and we’re excited to be part of their journey,” he said.

VEON Ventures makes $15M Series A investment in Pakistan B2B marketplace Dastgyr