EGYPT – Brimore, a social commerce startup, has raised funding from e-payments solutions and banking services provider Fawry, the North African country’s first startup “unicorn”, as part of its upcoming Series A round.

Brimore raised a US$3.5 million pre-Series A round last year and has now announced that it has finalised an investment from Fawry, which has acquired a minority stake.

Coming as part of Brimore’s upcoming Series A funding round, the investment will also see Fawry leverage its role as a strategic investor to engage, support, and encourage growth at the company and in Egypt’s wider digital ecosystem.

“Fawry’s investment in Brimore represents an important vote of confidence in the company and its business model, which reaffirms our belief in the transformative power of digital tools to revolutionise commerce in Egypt,” said Brimore co-founder and chief executive officer (CEO) Mohamed Abdulaziz.

“Our platform has enabled tens of thousands of individuals across Egypt to start and grow profitable businesses with zero initial investment.

“We allow ordinary people, most of whom are women, to reach millions of customers across the country. Our partnership with Fawry leaves us in an ideal position to continue changing thousands of lives for the better while maintaining our rapid and impressive growth trajectory.”

Fawry said it has identified multiple opportunities to foster synergies between Brimore and Fawry’s own lines of business.

The company aims to achieve a seamless integration of its payments and financial services solutions into the Brimore platform, with further cooperation planned with Fawry’s complimentary verticals in the commerce and FMCG spaces.

“We look forward with great anticipation to our journey with Brimore. The company’s business holds great promise for spurring inclusive economic growth, where greater access to financial and business services enables small and micro enterprises to play a bigger role in the economy,” said Fawry CEO Eng. Ashraf Sabry.

“Our more than 230,000 strong merchant network is just one of the areas where lasting value will be created through this partnership. Moving forward, we aim to offer Fawry’s full suite of financial solutions to our partners at Brimore, their network of distributors, and their customer base.

“Fawry’s investment in Brimore fully aligns with our strategic objectives of expanding Fawry’s digital ecosystem and establishing a foothold in Egypt’s booming e-commerce scene. We at Fawry believe that rapidly digitising how business is done in Egypt is key to fostering the expansion of small businesses to hard-to-reach populations, accelerating economic growth and creating a better future for all.”

Founded in 2017, Brimore has built a platform that leverages the power of individual social networks to enable broad, cost-effective market access. It enables manufacturers to sell their products directly to end consumers through a network of micro-distributors across Egypt.

The startup’s platform, which includes payment and supply chain facilities, serves hundreds of SMEs, which sell thousands of products including packaged foods, personal care, and household goods through tens of thousands of social sellers in all 27 governorates across Egypt.