DW: ‘Pakistan could be the next big Asian market for tech startups’

Pakistan was named one of the fastest-growing economies in Asia by McKinsey & Co's in it's latest report.

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Miriam Partington, a famous journalist, reporting on tech startups and entrepreneurship has revealed in her reports that Pakistan could be the next big market for tech startups.

Partington said the young and technoid population of Pakistan, along with an increasing level of local capital, are creating opportunities for tech entrepreneurs in the country.

The founder of London-based communications startup The Content Architects, Hena Husain, said, “Over the last few years the tech ecosystem of Pakistan is gaining momentum.” “The country is home to a strong tech talent base and it’s still competitively reasonable, which makes it perfect for early-stage founders like myself.”

Husain said that the development in Karachi’s tech market is “accelerating” by the day, which reveals a wider trend across Pakistan.

In the latest report published by McKinsey & Co’s on the Pakistani ecosystem, the country was named one of the fastest-growing economies in Asia.

The report further stated that since 2010, 720 startups had been formed. Out of which, 67 percent of startups are still operational with 100% successful raising funding.

Emerged organically

According to Iskander Pataudi, a Pakistani-born tech expert working in Berlin, “the tech scene emerged organically. Tech is growing around the world, and Pakistan is an undiscovered market. It was only a matter of time before investors started to take notice.”

Pataudi further said after the e-commerce platform Daraz was acquired by China’s Alibaba Group for an estimated $200 million. This was an early indicator that “something was about to happen.”

The tech expert said, “Since then, Airlift, an app-based bus service, raised a Series A funding round of $12 million in August 2019, managed by US-based venture capital (VC) firm First Round Capital. This step marked the first investment of the firm in Asia after more than a decade.”

More investment in startups

Overall, startups in Pakistan elevated a meager $18.8 million in funding in 2019. However, more investment in startups is expected from overseas in the coming years.

Recently an Egyptian ride-hailing organization the Swvl has shared its plan to invest $25 million in Pakistan’s tech industry over the next two years and create 10,000 job opportunities.

New Avenues of Opportunity

Many Pakistani nationals living abroad believe that new avenues of opportunity are opening up in Pakistan.

Originally Published in DW


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