SOUTH AFRICA – South Africa based startup, Yebo Fresh, which delivers fresh, frozen and dry groceries to township communities in Cape town has closed a second round of funding as it seeks to expand its footprint and speed up its growth.

The funding round was led by two seed investors, Bas Hochstenbach and Frederik Gerner, who are the founders of E4EAfrica (Entrepreneurs for Entrepreneurs) specializing in supporting early stage ventures in South Africa to scale up.

They were joined by WooThemes co-founder, Mark Forrester and Digital Planet CEO, Neil Watson.

Yebo Fresh founder and CEO Jessica Boonstra stated that they had entered into an agreement with the investors not to disclose the size of the investment round which was concluded at the end of last month.

“It’s a good size funding round that allows us to seriously expand our technology and our footprint and to grow fast in the coming months,” she stated.

Yebo Fresh will use the funding to build brand awareness and conversion at a much bigger scale, further build its core technology, grow its logistics capacity and fine tune its product offering.

Bas Hochstenbach, co-founder of E4EAfrica, said his company was delighted to have brought together a group of very experienced entrepreneurs that besides investing the required capital will add tremendous value in all aspects of the startup’s operations.

“The Yebo Fresh business model is smart and has huge potential to make a serious positive impact. We’re all excited to assist the Yebo Fresh team in making good things happen,” Bas said.

The start up was founded in Hout Bay, a suburb of Cape Town in September 2018 with an initial investment from Professor Stefan Allesch-Taylor.

It has rapidly expanded its operations to other locations in Cape Town, namely Hangberg, Langa, Gugulethu, Khayelitsha and Mfuleni.

Yebo Fresh is a community-driven and technology-enabled shopping service that saves its customers time, money and hassle by delivering essential groceries at affordable prices.

Where traditional food retailers often lack a network within townships, Yebo Fresh’s ‘pop-up’ sales model engages directly with the market, delivering orders straight to customers’ doorsteps.

The “pop-up” sales model makes use of a network of local entrepreneurs who assist customers with food orders and organising grocery delivery to easily accessible community hotspots like schools, day care centres and churches.

The startup gathers orders throughout the week in large batches and delivers once a week on Saturdays which enables them save on fixed costs, optimise delivery routing, reduce stock levels and waste to a minimum.

Despite most of its customers being smartphone users, not all are familiar with the concept of shopping online. In response to this, Yebo Fresh has introduced a paper form (which is digitised by its local agents), a WhatsApp call order service and a WhatsApp order bot.