OTO announced a $3 million funding round from MEVP & Derayah Capital, making it the largest seed raised by a SaaS company in MENA.
The Riyadh-based company has built a technology that helps eCommerce brands ship, manage, track, and return their online orders with 100+ shipping carriers via one single dashboard.
Mohammad Al-Razaz (CEO) and Furkan Uzar (CTO) founded OTO in 2019 with the goal of building a global shipping technology that could be used by any company at any size anywhere in the eCommerce space.
“The eCommerce Industry is growing rapidly, especially in GCC where it is expected to hit $50B by 2025. However, moving towards eCommerce is not as easy as it sounds, since most of the online businesses are struggling from the manual operational processes when it comes into shipping starting from using multiple carriers’ dashboards to downloading excel sheets to analyse the performance of the shipping carriers. On the other hand, 57 per cent of GCC consumers expect their online orders to be delivered within two to 24 hours. Indeed, seven out of 10 of the online orders abandon their shopping cart mainly from the high shipping fees and late delivery times. We are here to solve this problem,” said Al-Razaz.
OTO has grown by 300 per cent year to date in the number of processed orders compared to 2020 and it is expected to grow by 500 per cent by the end of 2021. They have more than 400 registered brands shipping their online orders locally and internationally, including well-known brands like Zain, SACO, Arabian Oud, Zohoor Alreef, The Body Shop, Cardial and many others, who rely on the platform and its integrations to ship their eCommerce orders.
“If pizza can be ordered, prepared, backed, packed, and delivered to your door in less than 45 mins, then why does your online ordered shirt take four to five days to be delivered?” asked Al-Razaz. “Our technology enables eCommerce Stores, OmniChannel Retailers, Marketplaces and Fulfillment Centers to enjoy an Amazon-like experience by automating the operational processes, improving the delivery times, and getting access to discounted shipping fees. In less than five minutes, our customers can connect their eCommerce platform to their physical store/warehouses to a pool of shipping carriers.”
In18 months, OTO has built integrations with over 100 carriers and 15 sales channels, making them the largest integrator for shipping services in the MENA region. In addition, the solution integrates with ERP systems & WMS solutions to sync and monitor the inventory levels of the products at the physical stores and warehouses. OTO’s advanced shipping engine helps you select the best shipping option based on configurable feasibility and priority rules to make sure you’re shipping with the best carrier either by using your own shipping rates, or OTO’s discounted shipping rates.
While based in Saudi Arabia, the management team at OTO has shaped the company with a global focus in mind since its inception. “Saudi Arabia has always played a key role in logistics, being located amidst three continents on the trade routes linking Asia and Europe. Therefore, we leveraged the expertise of our team to build advanced solutions that will overcome the local & global eCommerce fulfillment challenges,” said Al-Razaz. “We are thrilled to partner with MEVP & Derayah Capital to continue to execute on our vision of becoming the leading shipping management software provider globally.”
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OTO is currently offering its services in Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, and Egypt. The company plans to continue hiring top talents (or Heros as they like to call them) from around the world at a rapid pace, with the goal of reaching 50 Heros in 12 months while supporting triple-digit revenue growth. The funding will allow the company to grow its customers base across GCC & Egypt while executing its product roadmap, which includes releasing new features to help customers save time and money on their shipping and fulfillment processes.
“With eCommerce in MENA growing 20 per cent+ year on year and rising expectations of digitally-native shoppers, many omnichannel and eCommerce retailers are unable to fulfill their orders efficiently to meet those expectations. Happy customers have helped us identify OTO as a key eCommerce enabler that automates order fulfillment to reduce the delivery time and costs. We are excited to join Mohamad, Furkan and the OTO heroes as they build a scalable and localised SaaS platform. We are happy to partner with Derayah Capital to support OTO in strategic, long-term investment in their product and technology,” said Riyad Abou Jaoudeh, Partner at MEVP.
Faris Al-Rashed, Chairman of Derayah Ventures said, “With every innovation comes new forms of struggles as innovations raise the living standards to new heights. That is what we saw with the massive growth in online commerce. This introduced new challenges of how to deliver faster to the customers. Fast standard itself keeps getting shorter. OTO existed to resolve this by helping retailers and online shops deliver this new higher standard of customer service. That is why Derayah is excited to back it and the amazing team behind it.”