Kenya’s Leta, a B2B supply chain and logistics SaaS provider has secured $3 million in a pre-seed funding round that received participation, from investors like Chui Ventures, 4Di Capital, Chandaria Capital, PANI, Verdant Frontiers Fintech, Samurai Incubate, Charles Murito (an executive at Google) and Cellulant co-founder Ken Njoroge.
Launched last year, Leta optimizes fleet management. Its proprietary route and load optimization technology is designed to improve efficiency in delivering goods to customers. Thanks to its technology, Leta helps to reduce the number of vehicles needed for distribution, which in turn means increased cost savings and competitiveness. Thanks to the new funding, the startup is looking at exploring growth opportunities in West Africa. Although it is already existing in five markets, Leta wants to tap into some of the biggest distributors and e-commerce players in Ghana and Nigeria, as it plans to grow its business beyond Kenya, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Uganda, and Tanzania, where it is already operational. CEO Nick Joshi noted that “Our next year is going to be fairly big for us. Our product has stabilized and we have a very good understanding of our sales process and our go-to-market strategy. The capital we have raised will help us to quickly scale into new markets beginning with Ghana, where we will launch in December.” He also added that the startup is also working on a transport marketplace and will be introducing fintech products also.
Explaining what business Leta does, the CEO said that “We are an operating system for logistics, and our software is able to show distributors the most efficient route to serve the customers quicker and enables them to use less assets (vehicles) to serve more customers. It also makes it possible to track the driver, the specific goods carried, the loading of the truck to know if space use is maximized, the time spent during the journey, and distance traveled.”
According to him, using Leta businesses can be able to also measure vehicle metrics like speed, braking, idle time, and other data points necessary to their operations. Customers can use a web link to track their deliveries. Haulers, on the other hand, use a driver app that shows them their different stops and sign-off forms which indicate proof of delivery.
Leta claims to have made more than 500,000 deliveries since it launched last year. It also added that it has delivered over 20,000 tons of goods and managed 2,000 vehicles. Businesses like fast food company Simbisa Brands, consumer goods conglomerate Chandaria Industries, e-commerce platform Twiga, and fashion marketplace ShopZetu, are some of the businesses Leta currently works with.
“As a leading FMCG player in the region, we are continuously focused on optimizing our business to best service the growing demand. Leta has played a pivotal role in helping us streamline our last-mile distribution, and we’re seeing meaningful savings on our logistics costs in addition to an improved service delivery time. After working closely with the Leta team, we were impressed with the team, the technology they are building, and the scale of the problem they are solving, which prompted our investment from Chandaria Capital.” CEO of Chandaria Capital, Darshan Chandaria said.