South Asia Soars: Meet two promising upstarts from the region

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Accelerating Asia welcomes startups from across Asia Pacific, including Southeast Asia, East Asia, and South Asia. Because of this breadth, it’s notable when geographic trends do happen to emerge across the portfolio. This groundswell of startups from a particular market may suggest an up-and-coming startup ecosystem.

One such example is Bangladesh. Accelerating Asia was one of the first companies to invest in the market with vehicle maintenance platform Zantrik and truckload freight marketplace loop. Since then, Accelerating Asia has gone on to invest in a total of 18 Bangladeshi startups, such as transport platform Shuttle, lifestyle marketplace Romoni, healthtech app Amarlab, and digital health platform Medeasy

The success of these companies has produced a virtuous cycle. Many Bangladeshi startups apply to Accelerating Asia after learning how Bangladeshi startups from previous cohorts have successfully scaled thanks to its flagship accelerator, such as agritech platform iFarmer.

Hishabee, the newest Bangladeshi startup from cohort seven, continues this same level of excellence. For cohort seven, Hishabee is joined by another startup from South Asia, Pakistan’s BizB, which is Accelerating Asia’s second investment in the market.  

Together Hishabee and BizB paint a picture of two ecosystems on the rise, built on the backs of entrepreneurs daring enough to tackle each nation’s biggest problems through technology.

Hishabee (Bangladesh, SDG 8 and 9) 

Despite being one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, Hishabee founder Rakin Savi shared that 93% of businesses in Bangladesh are offline. As a result, they practically rely on luck for sales: Their customers are whoever happens to be foot traffic on a particular day. The manual processes also result in a loss of 3 hours per day to operations and 20% of budget due to a lack of proper procedures for procurement and other business activities. 

Hishabee is addressing this problem with a retail management solution for small businesses in Bangladesh. The end-to-end solution has modules for e-commerce, business reporting, and automation of offline operations. On average, these features help businesses achieve 20% more online sales, save 2 hours of time, and increase profits by 10% due to improved collections and procurement. 

Hishabee offers a base subscription, on top of which they offer value-added services. The company has already garnered 130k users, with an impressive 833% year on year growth and US$100k annual recurring revenue. Hishabee clearly has the potential to help millions of small businesses thrive in the growing Bangladeshi economy. 

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BizB (Pakistan, SDG 12)

According to BizB founder Sehrish Raza, the Pakistani startup is operating with several tailwinds at its back. The first is the growth of the secondary market, which is now valued at US$62 billion. The second is the increasing emphasis on the circular economy: Consumers want to support causes and organizations that contribute to sustainability. 

BizB is positioned to take advantage of these two trends through its marketplace for pre-loved apparel. On this marketplace, women can buy and sell pre-loved clothing, helping them earn or save money while advancing sustainability. BizB monetizes through a 20% commission charged to sellers, and many users on the platform tend to freely switch back and forth between buying and selling clothing. 

BizB has strong business fundamentals, boasting of a low customer acquisition cost of just US$1.9, a high customer lifetime value of US$52.20, and a 68% retention rate. Raza also revealed that the dress she was wearing for her demo day pitch was sourced through BizB, showcasing the platform’s ability to help style the modern Pakistani woman.  

Gain exclusive access to the other demo day pitches by signing up here

Interested investors can also co-invest alongside Accelerating Asia or invest into one of our individual startups, including Hishabee or BizB.


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Accelerating Asia invests in startups with scalable technology solutions and revenue generating business models that combine purpose with profit.


In making an investment decision, investors must rely on their own examination of startups and the terms of the investment including the merits and risks involved. Prospective investors should not construe this content as legal, tax, investment, financial or accounting advice.