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Nigerian Shipping Startup, Topship Secures $2.5m Investment

Topship, a Nigerian shipping startup, has raised a $2.5 million seed round led by Flexport.

Also participating in the round were Y Combinator, Soma Capital, Starling Ventures, Olive Tree Capital, Capital X and True Capital. The individual investors in the round include Immad Akhund, Mercury CEO and Arash Ferdowsi, co-founder of Dropbox.

Founded in 2020 during the pandemic by Moses Enenwali and Babatunde Junaid, Topship is the easiest for African businesses to import/export parcels, cargo and freight to their customers, distributors and suppliers across the World. The startup use technology to drive transparency making it easy for African businesses to connect with customers, suppliers and distributors across the World.

Since inception, Topship has allowed 1,500 merchants to move cargo and parcels from Nigeria to over 150 countries. Although it can help Nigerian merchants receive parcel deliveries from the other way round, they can only accept cargo deliveries from the U.S., the U.K and China. 

The company’s revenue comes from selling shipping insurance and taking a margin on transactions. 

CEO Enewali said the company is exploring other revenue streams, including trade financing and customs clearance charges. The company has recorded ~50% month-on-month revenue growth since getting into YC this January.

“I think what YC does more than anything is just push you to dive as deep as possible in understanding your users,” said the CEO about Topship’s revenue growth after YC. Looking into the future, a lot of it’s coming from that ethos of the user being the most important piece of the puzzle, and we have to be obsessive about it. We’re taking all the learnings and insights that we’ve learned from our users over the past five months or six months and building it into the product in a way that is merchants-focus.”