According to sources familiar with the situation, Airlift, a prominent Pakistani company, will close. The company informed staff members during a meeting on Tuesday night that the shutdown would take place on Wednesday, according to the sources.
The startup had just last week attempted to acquire more money, but according to one of the presentations shown to staff, “several” investors informed the business that it would take at least two months for them to transmit the money.
“Other investors unwilling to assume the risk of wiring ahead of others,” the slide said.
Lahore, Karachi, and Islamabad were only a few of the eight Pakistani locations where Airlift provided a swift and practical commercial service. Users can have their purchases delivered in as little as 30 minutes by ordering groceries, fresh fruit, necessities, and even sporting goods from the Airlift website or app.
At a valuation of $275 million, the business collected $85 million in August in the largest Series B fundraising round in the nation. The biggest valuation ever for a startup in Pakistan. That round was led by Josh Buckley of Buckley Ventures and Harry Stebbings of 20VC.
Earlier this year, the airline was reportedly attempting to raise a fresh round via SAFE at valuations of $500 million, according to a source with firsthand knowledge of the situation.
The startup’s demise can result in less excitement in the neighborhood ecosystem. Pakistan’s then-Prime Minister Imran Khan expressed his satisfaction with the startup’s progress when it raised its Series B funding. “Airlift’s achievement was considered a crucial milestone for a rising technology ecosystem in underdeveloped countries because it was a technology startup inventing in Pakistan and creating a new precedent. In a statement to the workforce on Tuesday, Gul stated, “We believe that the ecosystem will endure and that some of the most advantageous technology businesses in developing countries have yet to be founded.
At the end of December, Silicon Valley Bank reported $13.5 billion in assets, up from $12 billion at the same time last year. In its filing this week, Airbnb didn’t provide any additional information on its banks. After suggesting a per-share price of between $56 and $60 earlier this month, the company is seeking up to $800.25 million in the debut and might be valued as high as $35 billion.
The business has stated that it will finish paying out severance benefits to workers within the next four to eight weeks and will settle all unpaid invoices to suppliers and stakeholders.
The firm stated in a statement that “teammates are not needed to come to work beyond today” and that Thursday at the end of the day, access to company resources will be terminated.
Airlift expanded to South Africa earlier this year, which dramatically boosted its costs. Jul warned that the market had abruptly deteriorated and that Airlift needed to be prudent in its capital allocation and management, as well as to halt new hirings, in a memo to employees in May that TechCrunch was able to get.
In FY 2022, he predicted that the startup’s development in South Africa “would remain in an embryonic stage.”
The airlift was able to reach order-level profitability, maintain reasonable scale, and cut financial burn by 66%, according to a message from Gul on Tuesday. According to his report, “As of July 2022, Airlift was approximately three months away from operating profitability (i.e. positive cash flow from operations) and approximately six to nine months away from company-level profitability (i.e. free cash flow).”
We received a lot of interest from prospective investors in May, which prompted one of our investors to take the initiative and organize the Series C1 financing for Airlift. First Round Capital, Indus Valley Capital, Buckley Ventures, 20VC, and other investors were delighted to accept to participate in the round with sizeable checks thanks to the lead investor’s amazing support in opening doors to other investors.
Airlift has a clear plan in place to finish the funding round by the beginning of July. All participating investors received documentation from the Company that needed their signatures. However, last week, some players voiced their uncertainty about wire timings and their payments due to the rapidly deteriorating conditions in the world economy. In the end, this meant that the Company’s capital needs would not be satisfied. The investment round failed as a result.