Nigerian startup Shekel Mobility, backed by Y Combinator, has successfully raised $7 million in a seed round, consisting of $3.2 million in equity and over $4 million in debt. The funds are earmarked for driving growth in Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) as the company prepares for its next funding round.
Earlier this year, Shekel Mobility secured a $1.95 million pre-seed investment, with Ventures Platform leading the round and participation from Y Combinator, Voltron Capital, and Zedcrest. The recent seed round was co-led by Ventures Platform and MaC Venture Capital, with participation from Y Combinator, Rebel Fund, Unpopular Ventures, Maiora Capital, PageOne Lab Inc., Phoenix Investment Club, Heirloom VC, Pioneer Ventures, and various angel investors.
The debt component was provided by Zedvance, VFD Microfinance Bank, Zenith Bank, and Fluna, among others. Some of these entities have utilized Shekel Mobility’s platform to finance auto dealerships.
Operating in the mobility-fintech space alongside startups like Autochek and Moove, Shekel Mobility focuses on helping car dealers find, finance, and sell vehicles in the $30 billion African used car market. The company positions itself as the premier platform for launching and growing local or virtual car dealerships, with a vision to build the largest auto dealership ecosystem, targeting transactions worth $10 billion annually by 2025.
Shekel Mobility reports facilitating transactions exceeding $56 million to date, supporting the growth of over 1,400 auto dealers and impacting 7,000 cars across the last 20 months through its credit product. Looking ahead, the company plans to introduce new offerings, including Shekel Business, aiming to digitize informal trading processes within the auto dealership vertical.
Co-founder Benjamen Oladokun emphasized Shekel Mobility’s focus on enabling car purchases without collateral and reducing the cost of owning car dealerships by providing additional digital tools and physical infrastructure.
Ventures Platform’s Founding Partner, Kola Aina, acknowledged Shekel’s role in creating a market innovation crucial for expanding Nigeria and Africa’s automotive industry. Marlon Nichols, Founder and Managing Partner at MaC Venture Capital, expressed confidence in Shekel Mobility’s potential to transform and ignite Africa’s automotive industry by empowering small businesses with essential financing.
Shekel Mobility’s successful seed round signifies a significant step toward its vision of becoming a leading force in Africa’s auto dealership ecosystem. With a strong focus on innovation, digitization, and empowering small businesses, the company is well-positioned to make a substantial impact on the continent’s automotive landscape.