TUNL Fuels African E-commerce Exports with $1M Lift-off

TUNL, an innovative parcel shipping platform, recently raised $1 million in pre-seed funding from notable investors including Founders Factory Africa, Digital Africa Ventures, E4E Africa, and Jozi Angels. This significant financial support will propel TUNL’s expansion in South Africa, its primary market, and aid in its foray into other key African and emerging markets.

Established in 2022 by Matthew Davey and Craig Lowman, TUNL has witnessed a remarkable growth trajectory, increasing its merchant base by 35% monthly. It now boasts over 700 merchants in its network. The third quarter of 2023 saw the number of merchants double, underlining TUNL’s rapid growth. In 2023 alone, TUNL’s merchants have dispatched over 11,000 international parcels, contributing significantly to South Africa’s export value, exceeding R24 million.

Davey and Lowman, the founders, are motivated by a vision to stimulate the growth of small and medium-sized enterprises [SMEs] in emerging markets by simplifying cross-border trade. This mission is not just about business growth; it’s about fostering sustainable livelihoods and attracting foreign currency.

One of TUNL’s key offerings is its competitive pricing, which is transparent and accessible to businesses of all sizes. This pricing strategy aims to equalize the playing field for businesses seeking to tap into overseas markets by reducing shipping costs. Lowman emphasizes the importance of this approach for ensuring fair opportunities for businesses to flourish in international sales.

Recently, TUNL introduced an AI-driven product classification system. This innovation forms the backbone of their new service offering – full landed cost pricing. This service, a first in South African e-commerce, includes parcel delivery costs along with duties and taxes prepaid, marking a significant step forward in pricing transparency.

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