Accelerating Asia invests in Bangladeshi startup Hishabee

Hishabee, is a Bangladesh-based startup that helps small businesses reduce bottlenecks, lower overheads and open revenue streams by providing them with a full stack solution

International early-stage VC fund, Accelerating Asia has announced its latest round of investments on Tuesday, with ten new companies joining Cohort 7 of the flagship program, which includes Bangladesh-based startup Hishabee. 

Hishabee, is a Bangladesh-based startup that helps small businesses reduce bottlenecks, lower overheads and open revenue streams by providing them with a full-stack solution.

Founded in 2020, the start-up has been providing a one-stop solution for all types of business accounting, e-commerce websites, and marketing needs - made in both Bengali and English languages - with easy-to-use Bengali training videos and tutorials; enabling small businesses to access technology, market, finance and information through their full-stack solution.

Founded by Rakin Mohammad Savi, Zahin Mohammad Juvi, and Ratul Bin Tazul, Hishabee is a full-stack business solution that already counts over 100,000 Bangladeshi small businesses as users.

The startup's digital-based business solutions do not need the user to have any technical knowledge or the ability to write a single line of code, in the efforts of digitizing small businesses.

“One of Hishabee's core values is accessibility and keeping this in mind, Hishabee inaugurated a dealer program,” Zahin Mohammad Juvi, one of the founders of Hishabee told Dhaka Tribune. 

This is Accelerating Asia's eighteenth investment into a Bangladesh startup.

Accelerating Asia was one of the first early-stage international VCs to invest in Bangladesh, funding the likes of Amarlab, Dana, DoctorKoi.com, HandyMama, hellotask, iFarmer, loop, markopolo.ai, MedEasy, Nitex, PriyoShop, Romoni, Swap, Shuttle, Sohopathi, SupplyLine, and Zantrik. 

According to Craig Bristol Dixon, co-founder and General Partner at Accelerating Asia, Hishabee is another great addition to the organization's portfolio of Bangladeshi startups. 

“Since our first investment into Bangladesh a few years ago, we've seen the startup and tech ecosystem grow exponentially. Hishabee is a perfect startup for this moment, as it's effectively an innovation enabler: It'll allow other Bangladesh small businesses to not only tap into the digital economy, but successfully leverage it for growth,” said Dixon, adding that he would like to see even more high growth Bangladeshi startups apply to future cohorts.

Including Hishabee, the new investments take Accelerating Asia's portfolio to 60 startups that have raised a total of over $50 million, with Cohort 7 having raised $5.2 million prior to joining the accelerator program. 

The new investments in Cohort 7 also have market traction and grow revenue with an average Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) of over $46,000 per month and average monthly revenue of over $13,000.

The other startups that also received investment in the Cohort include Cocotel, Kooky.io, Safe Truck, Shoplinks, Easy Rice Digital Technology, HealthPro, BizB, and Ulisse.

All the startups are actively involved in achieving Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) goals.

Similarly, Hishabee, also targets SDG 8 (decent work and economic growth) and 9 (industry, innovation, and infrastructure).

The ten new startups also include 60% female co-founded startups, Easy Rice, Shoplinks, Kooky, BizB, Healthpro.id, and SafeTruck all have at least one female co-founder. 

This is significantly higher than the average portfolio given just 17.2% of private capital in Southeast Asia was deployed to female-founded startups.

According to Amra Naidoo, general partner at Accelerating Asia, this cohort has some of the most mature startups to date. 

“What we've seen in Cohort 7 is a kind of success inflation: The ten startups we invested in have even more significant milestones in revenue, user acquisition, and other metrics than you would typically associate with early stage startups. We believe this is a positive sign for not only Accelerating Asia, but the ecosystem in Asia Pacific as a whole: Our startups are finding product-market fit faster than ever before, allowing them to focus on scaling toward market leadership,” said Naidoo.

“We've got great founders, innovative products, and impressive financial traction. Teams like these are likely to succeed and deliver good investment returns for us and the other investors who back them,” said Dixon.

He also said that Accelerating Asia always invests in businesses that can make money today and our investment lens is focused on intelligent financial plans and founders who can monetize gaps in the market in the shorter term.

“When it comes to investments, we follow a simple strategy at Accelerating Asia. One, we back organizations that can monetise in any economic climate, and two, founders who can navigate through any market conditions. The most innovative organizations, after all, will succeed in any era,” said Dixon.

Accelerating Asia launched Fund II in 2021; Cohort 7 is the third batch of investments for Fund II which will deploy capital across Southeast and South Asia pre-Series A startups.