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Thursday, May 23, 2024

“There will be unicorns from Pakistan”, says Managing Partner 500 Startups Khailee Ng

Pakistan's Startup Industry has caught the eye of one of the most active venture capital firms in the world. He believes Unicorns will emerge from the country.

Managing Partner of the number 1 most active global venture capital firm wrote a LinkedIn post wooing the potential of the Pakistani Start-up industry.

“Pakistan reminds me very much of my early days investing in Indonesia,” Ng said. He further mentioned the population size of 200 million people and the fact that unlike Indonesia, Pakistan is united by land.


Eyeing the potential of Pakistan, he claimed, “There will be unicorns from Pakistan”, hinting at the potential of big companies emerging from the country in the future.

He then talked about how one of his Venture Capitalists (VCs) had already invested in a Pakistani startup, named Retailo,

Retailo is a B2B marketplace, that got seed stage investment from one of the VCs at 500 Startups. Last year, upon their success, Khailee wrote,” While they operate one of the fastest-scaling business models in the world, their success means millions of SMEs and rural populations are more productive and have more stability and food security. Technology can impact the next billion, and we’re already seeing it here with what Retailo had been doing.”

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Ng’s LinkedIn post means a lot for the Pakistani start-up industry and the government. This means that investors are looking to expand to the Pakistani market. Also, when it is 500 startups, a company that actively invests in ideas globally, this means that people in Pakistan now have greater opportunities to expand their dreams and business.

It must be noted that recently Bazaar, a competitor of Retailo in Pakistan, and Sadapay, a fintech startup have received funding as well.  Compared to the fintech startups around the world only a few in Pakistan have secured funding. However, statements like the one made by Mr. Khailee Ng help VCs look towards Pakistan as well.

The incumbent government has been actively working with State Bank to improve the regulations regarding the start-up infrastructure of Pakistan. The ministry of information technology and telecommunications and its tech innovation arm, Ignite (National Technology Fund) on 9th February have launched ‘PakImpactInvest’, the country’s first investment platform to give tech startups access to early-stage and growth funding.