Last year we covered how emerging markets like Africa were exploding with classified ad sites as the population comes online and begins the process of getting into marketplaces.
Saltside Technologies is deep into this game, and last year raised $25 million in equity funding, backed by Investment AB Kinnevik, a listed Swedish investment house specializing in emerging markets. It’s now secured a new $40 million investment led by Hillhouse Capital and supported by Brummer & Partners and existing lead shareholder Investment AB Kinnevik. The cash will be used to scale further. The company competes with local products like Howzit, N-Soko, to even Craigslist Kenya.
It now has 6 million visitors a month across Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Ghana and Pakistan which collectively represent 200 million people, most of them now accessing via mobile. So there is lots of room for growth.
Co-founders Nils Hammar and James Peck were among the first employees at Skype. Hammar also founded networking site Kindo, which sold to MyHeritage.
Saltside is headquartered in Gothenburg, Sweden, where its development team is located, but the company also has staff on the ground in various locations.