Pakistan Forecast to Become World's 7th Largest Consumer Market By 2030

The World Economic Forum forecasts that Pakistan will rise to become the world's 7th largest consumer market by 2030. Nearly 60 million Pakistanis will join the consumer class (consumers spending more than $11 per day) to raise the country's consumer market rank from 15 to 7 in the next 10 years. WEF forecasts the world's top 10 consumer markets of 2030 to be as follows: China, India, the United States, Indonesia, Russia, Brazil, Pakistan, Japan, Egypt and Mexico.  Global investors chasing bigger returns will almost certainly shift more of their attention and money to the biggest movers among the top 10 consumer markets, including Pakistan.  Already, the year 2021 has been a banner year for investments in Pakistani technology startups

Consumer Markets in 2030. Source: WEF

Here's Brookings Institution overview of the top 5 movers in the next 10 years:

1. Bangladesh (+17 positions), from place 28 to 11; future consumer class: 85 million (+50 million) Global share of consumer class: 0.8 percent (2020), 1.6 percent (2030). Bangladesh’s consumer class is projected to more than double by 2030: Today, 35 million people in Bangladesh spend more than $11 a day. By 2030, it will be 85 million! 

2. Pakistan (+8 positions), from place 15 to 7; future consumer class: 121 million (+56 million) Global share of consumer class: 6 percent (2020), 2.3 percent (2030). Pakistan will add 56 million new consumers by 2030, for a total of 121 million. This means that in 2030, for the first time, every other Pakistani will be able to spend more than $11 per day. 

3. Vietnam (+7 positions), from place 26 to 19; future consumer class: 56 million (+21 million) Global share of consumer class: 9 percent (2020), 1.1 percent (2030). Vietnam’s consumer class will grow from 35 million to 56 million within this decade, which is a success story particularly of the middle-aged generation: Consumers between 45 and 65 years of age will contribute nearly 25 percent of Vietnam’s spending, as opposed to 20 percent today. 

4. Philippines (+6 positions), from place 20 to 14; future consumer class: 79 million (+38 million) Global share of consumer class: 1 percent (2020), 1.5 percent (2030). The Filipino consumer class is projected to grow steadily, from 41 million today to 79 million in 2030. By then, more than two-thirds of the Filipino population will spend more than $11 per day. 

5. Indonesia (+2 positions), from place 6 to 4; future consumer class: 199 million (+76 million) Global share of consumer class: 2 percent (2020), 3.8 percent (2030). While Indonesia is only moving up two places, it is experiencing a large gain of consumer class growth. Starting from an already large base of 123 million, Indonesia will have almost 200 million consumers in 2030, making it the fourth-largest consumer market in the world.

Countries in Asia are expected to show the biggest growth of the consumer class among the world's 30 biggest consumer markets. The consumer class is defined as a group of people who spend more than $11 per day. Currently, 55% of the global consumer class live in Asia. 

World's Top 30 Consumer Markets. Source: World Data Lab's Market Pro 

Global investors chasing bigger returns will almost certainly shift more of their attention and money to the top 10 consumer markets, including Pakistan.  Already, the year 2021 has been a banner year for investments in Pakistani technology startups

Pakistan Population in 2030: 274 Million. Source: Our World in Data

Vehicles and home appliance ownership data analyzed by Dr. Jawaid Abdul Ghani of Karachi School of Business Leadership suggests that the officially reported GDP significantly understates Pakistan's actual GDP.  Indeed, many economists believe that Pakistan’s economy is at least double the size that is officially reported in the government's Economic Surveys. The GDP has not been rebased in more than a decade. It was last rebased in 2005-6 while India’s was rebased in 2011 and Bangladesh’s in 2013. Just rebasing the Pakistani economy will result in at least 50% increase in official GDP.  A research paper by economists Ali Kemal and Ahmad Waqar Qasim of PIDE (Pakistan Institute of Development Economics) estimated in 2012 that the Pakistani economy’s size then was around $400 billion. All they did was look at the consumption data to reach their conclusion. They used the data reported in regular PSLM (Pakistan Social and Living Standard Measurements) surveys on actual living standards. They found that a huge chunk of the country's economy is undocumented. 

Pakistan's service sector which contributes more than 50% of the country's GDP is mostly cash-based and least documented. There is a lot of currency in circulation. According to the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), the currency in circulation has increased to Rs. 7.4 trillion by the end of the financial year 2020-21, up from Rs 6.7 trillion in the last financial year,  a double-digit growth of 10.4% year-on-year.   Currency in circulation (CIC), as percent of M2 money supply and currency-to-deposit ratio, has been increasing over the last few years.  The CIC/M2 ratio is now close to 30%. The average CIC/M2 ratio in FY18-21 was measured at 28%, up from 22% in FY10-15. This 1.2 trillion rupee increase could have generated undocumented GDP of Rs 3.1 trillion at the historic velocity of 2.6, according to a report in The Business Recorder. In comparison to Bangladesh (CIC/M2 at 13%), Pakistan’s cash economy is double the size. Even a casual observer can see that the living standards in Pakistan are higher than those in Bangladesh and India. 

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Riaz Haq said…

Abdul Razak Dawood
I have been informed that during the month of Nov 2021, 🇵🇰 Pakistan’s exports had the fastest growth rate in South Asia🔼. Our exports grew by 33.5% compared to 🇧🇩Bangladesh’s 31.3 % and 🇮🇳India’s 26.5% growth.
Riaz Haq said…
Doing business in Pakistan: Perceptions and realities
Farhat Ali (former President, Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry)

A prospective foreign investor primarily looks at two aspects while selecting a country for investment:

1) Security of investment and country risk;

2) Return on investment and profitability.

Security of investment primarily relates to country risk in terms of its political and economic stability, security of men and material and sustainability of business.

While the other aspect relates to market and business analysis which has more to do with numbers. Pakistan with a budding middle class, growing consumer market, rising purchasing power of consumers and liberal investment incentives and government policies undoubtedly presents an investor an attractive market to be in and the numbers may add up to a healthy return on investment and profitability.

The issue for Pakistan is ‘security of investment and country risks’ factor, which undermines investor’s comfort and trust in its security of investment. This has a lot to do with the country’s perception.

Pakistan’s entities and functionaries responsible to mobilise FDI in the country have primarily been harping on presenting the investors attractive numbers and abundance of opportunities, propagated through countless seminars and webinars. Unfortunately, however, they prefer to remain silent on mitigating investor’s concerns on security of his investment.

Just last week, the BoI organised an investment promotion seminar to apprise the potential foreign investors on investment policies and opportunities in Pakistan in the field of education and innovation technologies, highlighting Information Technology sector as one of the fastest-growing sectors of Pakistan’s economy, contributing around one percent to the GDP of the country at about $3.5 billion and reaching $ 7 billion in the next two to four years. The numbers sound great but numbers alone may not be convincing enough when it comes to attracting a sizable and strategic investment in the sector.

Also, this week the Embassy of Switzerland in Pakistan and the Swiss-Asian Chamber of Commerce Switzerland (SACC) conducted a webinar titled ‘Doing Business in Pakistan – Perceptions and Realities’. It was participated, among others, by the Swiss investors who already have their footprints in Pakistan and potential investors from Switzerland – primarily, the Small and Medium Enterprises. The webinar presented a much balanced investment landscape of Pakistan as a land of business opportunities for Swiss investors and also the pitfalls an investor could come across in the process. The diversity between the apprehensions of the potential investor driven by country’s perception and the reality of success experienced by the Swiss investors operating in Pakistan was apparent. The gap between reality and perception needs to be fairly worked at and narrowed down. The Swiss Business Council Pakistan and Swiss-Asian Chamber of Commerce Switzerland shall consider to work on bridging the gap between Pakistan’s perception and the reality on ground.

Pakistan needs more of similar cooperation with other countries.

Media plays an important role in shaping people’s beliefs and ideas. More specifically, media have a great influence on how investors think about foreign countries where they have no footprint. Investors looking to invest abroad certainly pay attention to what is reported in the media about a country they intend to invest in.

Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan to rebase it GDP to 2015-16

The World Bank (WB) has validated the overall methodology for conducting the rebasing exercises in Pakistan and pointed out some deficiencies in respective areas, which could be rectified within the next few days.

The Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) is ready to present the re-basing of national accounts exercise before the high-powered technical committee, Governance Council and then Economic Coordination Committee of the Cabinet (ECC).

With this exercise, some key economic indicators will be improved but some will be further worsened. For instance, with the ballooning of GDP growth, total public debt in percentage of GDP will be improved. However, the FBR’s tax-to-GDP ratio may be worsened.

"We have accomplished 36 surveys/studies out of total assigned 42 exercises for changing the base year from 2005-06 to 2015-16 to calculate figures of national accounts as it will help ballooning the overall GDP growth rate in a substantial manner,” top official sources confirmed to The News.

“The re-basing of National Accounts will be accomplished within the current fiscal year and provisional GDP growth figure for 2021-22 will be calculated on the basis of rebasing exercise."

Top official sources said there are some practical difficulties in the way of rebasing of national accounts as the PBS conducted 42 studies on various sectors of the national economy to finalise weights on the basis of the latest data compiled in the fiscal year 2015-16. The PBS conducted different studies in the last four years. Earlier, such studies were conducted by consultants through the private sector but for the first time it was being done by the PBS itself, so the quality of the done studies needs to be thoroughly scrutinized before granting approval for rebasing of national accounts on the basis of 2015-16.

The last rebasing of national accounts was done in 2005-6 during the Musharraf/Shaukat Aziz regime. Earlier, the rebasing was done in 1999-2000 after a period of 20 years, so it was decided that the rebasing exercise would be done after five years. The economic census was also done in 2005-6 and the national accounts were re-based on the basis of the same data, so it was decided that the rebasing of national accounts should be done after a period of 10 years.

The PBS captured the data on the stipulated time-frame but for accomplishing all other requirements, it took almost four years for conducting other studies. Now it is hoped that the rebasing exercise will be implemented to change the base year from 2005-6 to 2015-16 because in 10 years, there are many ground realities changed. So fresh data capturing methodology should be devised to get a more realistic picture of the national economy.

Riaz Haq said…
Motta’s, which started operations in 1986 as a single-floor store selling basic grocery items, now has three floors and has acquired two stores in DHA called The Mart by Motta’s. Diamond Superstore, which started in 1958 as a kiryana selling aata, has seven branches in Karachi, including one with a food court and a children’s play area; Naheed Supermarket (known for introducing pre-packaged masalas and pulses to the market) began as a 1,000-feet square outlet and Lahore’s Al-Fatah began operations in the 1940s (under the name Al-Hamra) and now has 23 branches. All the above believe they have barely scratched the surface of Pakistan’s modern retail sector.

A number of local modern trade stores, along with mid-sized and smaller general stores, have opened and/or expanded, especially following the launch of international modern trade (IMT) stores, such as Carrefour, Makro and Metro in the 2000s. According to Muhammad Ibrahim, Owner, Motta’s, once IMTs entered Pakistan, people realised that the grocery store business was not limited to a traditional general store experience; consumers could be offered more convenience and variety and the business was profitable and "cash-rich." Mohammad Sheikh, Director, Al-Fatah, adds that market expansion in the last couple of years has been “aggressive” especially during the pandemic. “If you are uncertain about how long the pandemic will last, the best business to invest in is groceries,” he says.

In 2020, Pakistan’s food and grocery retail market had total revenues worth $52.6 billion, representing a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.1% between 2016 and 2020, according to a report, Food and Grocery Retail in Pakistan. Although the market value of the modern retail sector cannot be adequately estimated due to the industry being largely undocumented, store owners agree that it has been expanding pre- and post-Covid-19.

“In the beginning, consumer needs were limited – people would shop at kiryanas or neighbourhood general stores – but now their expectations are changing. For example, as people become more aware of global cuisines, they want to prepare non-desi food, such as pastas and burgers at home and there is a rise in demand for those ingredients,” explains Sheikh. As a result, established stores like Al-Fatah, Diamond Superstore, Motta’s, Naheed Supermarket and many others have kept evolving by revamping their stores, opening more branches and investing in product variety to stay above the competition and meet consumer demand. Although 225 million Pakistanis have access to more than two million retail outlets, of which approximately 800,000 are grocery retail stores (kiryanas, kiosks, department stores, supermarkets and medical-cum-general stores), the ratio of grocery stores to the population is still not enough.

“Compared to our population, the number of operational stores is nothing – one to two percent maybe. We are at the infancy stage, so even if 1,000 stores like Naheed Supermarket open in Pakistan, there will still be room for growth”, says Munsub Abrar, Director, Naheed Supermarket.

Although investing in the grocery retail business remains an attractive proposition, what are the intricacies involved in opening and maintaining an LMT store and how sustainable is the business for new players?

1 Investment
It can cost between Rs 20 to 30 million (small, basic stores) to Rs 80 to 100 million (large-scale stores) to open a grocery store, depending on the size, type of furnishings used (fixtures, equipment, etc.) fixed costs (rent, salaries, etc.) and product inventory.


Store owners agree that staying relevant is key and they must keep evolving, whether by expanding, investing in aesthetic changes to cater to the changing customer shopping experience or offering incentives, such as loyalty cards and working with brands on special discounts. Sheikh emphasises that their most loyal customers are the older generation but they need to cater to the new generation by keeping up with what they want.
Riaz Haq said…
Retail sector contributes to 18% of Pakistan’s GDP: Razzak Dawood

March 10, 2022 (MLN): Pakistan’s retail sector contributes 18% of the GDP, employ 16% of the workforce, said Razzak Dawood Commerce Adviser Razzak Dawood in 1st Future of Retail Business Summit (FOR2022) jointly hosted by Terrabiz Conferences and Chain stores Association of Pakistan (CAP) in Karachi on Wednesday.

A central objective of the Summit was to bring Pakistan’s diverse retail sector onto one cohesive platform.

The adviser said that the retail sector was critical to fueling supporting sectors such as construction and transportation. He further stated that the growth of the retail sector was a strong indicator of development and progress in the country.

Industry stalwarts used the platform of cross-sector key stakeholders to identify areas where collaboration could be made and improvements could benefit growth. The aggregate representation of business and technology allowed participants to envision how they could create the future of their retail brands and be part of this accelerating ecosystem. Retail legends such as Seema Irfan, founder of Bareeze and Founder of Al Fatah stores, Irfan Shaikh shared insights into the challenges they faced in building brands and serving customers in Pakistan.

An underlying theme that was highlighted in addition to the future of retail, is how resilient brands survived the challenges of the pandemic and became more customer-centric upon their reopening. The conference was supported by Pakistan Fintech Association, P@SHA and A.F. Fergusson & Co. As Knowledge Partners.

The sessions were chaired by august speakers such as Steve Dennis (Amazon Bestselling Author); Nadeem Hussain (PFN), Amir Paracha (Unilever); Saira Awan Malik (TCS); Faisal Riaz (Dolmen Mall); Seema Aziz (Sefam;); Shamoon Sultan (Khaadi), Ehsan Saya (Daraz), Ibad Ahmed (PandaMart), Guest of Honor M. Azfar Ahsan (Board of Investment) among the many industry leaders from retail, brands, e-commerce, fintech and taxation. In a special video address at the summit, Commerce Adviser Razzak Dawood expressed his appreciation for the conference and how the event would play a critical role in shaping the future of retail in Pakistan.
Riaz Haq said…
About SPAR Pakistan

SPAR is a supermarket offering fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh meat, grocery and household products with an in-store pharmacy and bakery.

SPAR is an international retail chain with over 13,000+ stores in 48 countries. In Pakistan SPAR Supermarket has 3 stores and has plans to expand across the country.

The store has its presence in two locations in Karachi; one at Alamgir Road, Sharfabad and the other at Miran Shah Road, Muhammad Ali Society/KDA scheme 1. The Faisalabad store is located on Eden Valley Road.

KARACHI SPAR SHARFABAD MS Tower, Alamgir Road, Sharfabad, Karachi SPAR KDASaima Twin Tower, Miran Shah Road, M.Ali Society, Karachi Map linkSPAR NORTH NAZIMABAD Shahrah-e-Humayun, North Nazimabad, Block F, Karachi. SPAR D.H.A PHASE VIII9-C, Lane 4, Phase VIII, Zulfiqar & Al Murtuza commercial area, Phase 8 Defence Housing Authority, Karachi, 75500
Riaz Haq said…
International supermarket chains in Pakistan:

Carrefour (Hypermart) French

Metro Cash & Carry German

SPAR Dutch

Tesco British


Imtiaz Supermarket local Pakistani chain

Riaz Haq said…
International Fast Food Chain Restaurants in Pakistan

22 – Fatburger

21 – Butlers Chocolate Cafe

20 – Cinnabon

19 – Texas Chicken

18 – CP Five Star

17 – Pepe’s Piri Piri

16 – Uncle Tetsu

15 – P.F. Chang’s

14 – Gloria Jeans

13 – Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf

12 – Nandos

11 – Papa Johns

10 – Hardees

9 – Johnny Rockets

8 – Baskin Robbins

7 – Subway

6 – KFC

5 – Dominos

4 – Dunkin Donuts

3 – Pizza Hut

2 – Burger King

1 – McDonald’s

Riaz Haq said…
#India #currency in circulation up 9.9% to over ₹31 lakh crore in FY22. Share of ₹500 and ₹2,000 notes together rose to 87.1% of total value of banknotes in circulation, despite #Modi's #DigitalIndia and #fintech. #Demonetization #BJP

The value and volume of banknotes in circulation increased by 9.9% and 5%, respectively, at ₹31,05,721 crore and 13.05 lakh, respectively, the Reserve Bank of India's annual report for 2021-22 shows. Comparatively, the increase in currency in circulation (both value and volume terms) was 16.8% and 7.2%, respectively, during 2020-21.

The rise in banknotes in circulation, despite the government's push for digital India and various reforms in the banking and fintech industry, has been attributed to "the second wave of COVID-19 pandemic, which induced renewed restrictions on movement in various parts of the country”.

The RBI supplies banknotes in denominations of ₹2, ₹5, ₹10, ₹20, ₹50, ₹100, ₹200, ₹500 and ₹2,000, while coins comprise 50 paise and ₹1, ₹2, ₹5, ₹10 and ₹20 denominations.The share of ₹500 banknotes, both in value and volume, increased during 2021-22 as compared to the previous year. However, the ₹2,000 banknote share continued to dip in both value and volume.In value terms, the share of these banknotes together accounted for 87.1% of the total value of banknotes in circulation as of March 31, 2022, against 85.7% on March 31, 2021.In volume terms, ₹500 notes constituted the highest share at 34.9%, followed by ₹10 denomination at 21.3% of the total currency in circulation as of March 31, 2022.The total value of coins in circulation rose 4.1% to ₹27,970 crore in 2021-22, while its volume grew 1.3% to 12,46,298.As of March 31, 2022, the coins of ₹1, ₹2 and ₹5 together constituted 83.5% of the total volume of coins in circulation, while in value terms, these denominations accounted for 75.8%.The currency issuance (both banknotes and coins) and its management are performed by the RBI through its issue offices, currency chests and small coin depots spread across the country.As of March 31, 2022, the State Bank of India accounted for the highest share of 53.6% in the currency chests network. The indent of banknotes was lower by 1.8% in 2021-22 than that of a year ago. The supply of banknotes was also marginally lower by 0.4% during the said year than the previous year.During 2021-22, the indent and supply of coins saw a huge drop at 73.3% and 73%, respectively, from the previous year.The RBI data shows that the year 2021-22 saw an 88.4% rise in the disposal of soiled banknotes as compared to the previous year at 1,878.01 crore pieces vs 997.02 crore pieces during the previous year.During the fiscal year 2021-22, of the total fake currency notes detected in the banking sector, 6.9% were detected at the RBI and 93.1% by other banks.Compared to the previous year, there was an increase of 16.4 per cent, 16.5 per cent, 11.7 per cent, 101.9 per cent and 54.6 per cent in the counterfeit notes detected in the denominations of ₹10, ₹20, ₹200, ₹500 (new design) and ₹2,000, respectively.Overall, the RBI spent ₹4,984.8 crore on security printing from April 1, 2021, to March 31, 2022, against ₹4,012.1 crore in the previous year (July 1, 2020, to March 31, 2021).
Riaz Haq said…
Kalsoom Lakhani
It’s July 1st, so time for
’s Q2 2022 Pakistan 🇵🇰 startup funding roundup (put together by our Insights team, s/o to
!). In Q2, startups raised $102.7M bringing our YTD to $274.7M, not bad considering in 2021 we did ~ $350M but here are a few thoughts:


Kalsoom Lakhani
1/ While we did better than Q2 2021 ($82M), we did less than Q1 2022 ($172M), with less deals (15 vs 22). Our prediction is we’ll reach & pass 2021’s number ($350M), but not by a significant amt (< 2x) & here’s why:


Kalsoom Lakhani
2/ first, Most international VCs are in a holding pattern (“wait & see”), which means there will be less VC $, but esp for LATER stage funding rounds (A & beyond). In a cause & effect way this means that startups that will raise later rounds are holding off on raising for now/


Kalsoom Lakhani
3/ focusing instead on building & showing growth & making sure they have enough runway (12-24 months) so that when they do go out to raise it’s when things are slightly better. We are & will see more “extensions” or bridge rounds happen this year as Pakistani startups extend/


Kalsoom Lakhani
4/ their runway & focus on showing *good business fundamentals* when they grow. If you’re a business that bleeds a ton of money w/ no path to profitability, 2021 may have been your year, but certainly not in 2022. 3rd, while the “drying up” is scary, it’s also an opp for PK/


Kalsoom Lakhani
5/ focused funds to collaborate more & for funds with slower dd processes (
’s Series A as a corp VC) to have more space to come in. Kudos to the team for this great work, all raw data avail here:

Riaz Haq said…
Faseeh Mangi
PayPal founder and billionaire investor Peter Thiel invests in Pakistan's startup space for the first time

Thiel participates in PriceOye's round

It sells consumer electronics such as mobile phones and raised $8 million in seed funding


A Pakistani startup, which has taken inspiration from China’s and India’s Flipkart to build a managed marketplace of electronics products, said on Tuesday it has raised seed funding from scores of investors including PayPal founder Peter Thiel.

Launched in March 2020 — just two weeks before the COVID-19 pandemic ravaged the world — the Islamabad-based startup PriceOye offers a range of electronics products, including smartphones, TVs and home appliances.

Its seed funding round was led by JAM Fund, a venture capital firm by Tinder founder Justin Mateen. The institutional funding round also included participation of Beenext, DG Daiwa, Mantis VC, HOF Capital, investor Palm Drive Capital and Atlas Ventures, among others. Angels including Thiel, Immad Akhud of Mercury Bank, and Asif Keshodia of Souq also participated in the round — alongside previous investors Fatima Gobi Ventures, SOSV, and Artistic Ventures. This is Thiel’s maiden investment in Pakistan.

PriceOye has served 45 million unique users in Pakistan in the last two years, covering 37.5% of the country’s total internet userbase, Adnan Shaffi, co-founder and CEO of the startup, told TechCrunch in an interview.

“We are the second most visited shopping website in the entire country, with over two and a half million monthly active users coming on the platform, doing research using our product recommendation engine, and then getting to know about different products,” he said.

After exiting two startups, Adan and his brother Adeel Shaffi got the idea of launching PriceOye when they were doing “a lot of island hopping” in Southeast Asia. The duo looked at several startups in Indonesia and India and found the Asian markets were seeing similar consumer internet trends play out — just at a different pace. They built a thesis that Pakistan will see similar adoption of consumer internet services in the next four to five years.

Riaz Haq said…

Faseeh Mangi
* Pakistani startup PostEx has acquired a logistics company to make it the nation's largest e-commerce delivery firm
* It started in 2019 by going door-to-door to small shops for business
* The combined entity will handle 50,000 orders a day


Pakistani startup PostEx, a provider of courier and financing services to online merchants, acquired logistics company Call Courier in a deal that makes it the nation’s largest e-commerce delivery firm, according to its founder.

The combined entity will be handling about 50,000 orders a day, a scale that makes it profitable, founder Muhammad Omer Khan said without disclosing a value for the deal. The acquisition gives PostEx delivery operations in 500 Pakistani cities, compared with its previous base that consisted of just the three main ones.

“While others are going on the backfoot and slowing down, we plan to become even more aggressive,” Khan, who is PostEx’s chief executive officer, said in an interview in the southern city of Karachi.

Pakistan, whose population of about 230 million makes it the world’s fifth-largest nation, is attracting interest from global investors as its online businesses gain users. The country’s startups raised more than $350 million in 2021, a record, with several global venture funds investing for the first time. PostEx raised $8.6 million last year in one of Pakistan’s largest early-stage funding rounds.

More than 90% of e-commerce deliveries in the South Asian nation are paid for in cash, resulting in long delays before the merchants receive the proceeds for the sale. PostEx offers these businesses upfront payments before deliveries are made, giving them liquidity. The financing services help PostEx stand out from the region’s other delivery companies, Khan said.

Pakistan’s e-commerce industry has lured the most investment in the recent funding rush. The majority of the population still hasn’t switched to online shopping, providing room for the sector to grow and transactions to reach $10 billion before 2025 from about $6 billion now, Khan estimates.

Khan started PostEx in 2019 with a friend, going door-to-door to small shops to convince them to allow the company to handle their deliveries. The acquisition more than triples its number of employees to 2,400.
Riaz Haq said…
#Pakistan #PropTech #Startup Scene a Standout Among #EmergingMarkets.A huge, young/growing population needs #housing & other #realestate services.The country’s only #unicorn — EMPG, the Emerging Power Market Property Group — came out of the proptech sector

Because Pakistan’s black market is three times the size of the nation’s legitimate economy, real estate is the only industry outperforming other asset classes, said Arif.

A country of 230 million people with a median age of 23, Pakistan is embracing proptech innovation as a means to more efficiently increase housing availability and other real estate services. The proptech industry in turn is providing new job opportunities for Pakistan’s growing number of highly educated young people.

Atif Bin Arif, founder and CEO of Karachi-based MyGhar, a coliving startup that provides furnished private and shared rooms with all-inclusive billing, said his decision to start the company was based on his trying to rent an apartment in Islamabad, the country’s capital. He found that Pakistan’s residential culture was a problem for a young bachelor looking to rent.

“You know, we live with our parents over here,” said Arif, who was raised in Toronto and moved back to Pakistan 10 years ago to take over his family’s travel and hospitality business. “It’s just a cultural norm that families live together and move out when they get married.”

However, Arif wasn’t married as he looked for an apartment.

“That was the first time I moved between cities as a temporary move,” he said. “As a single male, that was one of the most daunting tasks I have ever come across. If you visited 10 properties, 10 out of 10 landlords would say no to bachelors because they would think they’re going to come and ruin the place. So, culturally, that was a problem.”

It took Arif nearly two months to find a place.

“Also, it was expensive,” he added. “They would ask for three months’ deposit, three months advance rent, and one month of broker fees. It was a completely offline process. I would be going on classified websites, visiting properties, and physically exhausted. That’s where the Eureka moment happened: I am someone with resources and it’s taking me this long and it’s this daunting of a task? Imagine the average individual.”


“Funds cannot be parked anywhere except [in real estate],” he said. “I realized that’s where I wanted to be. There was no dedicated housing solution. And I thought that if I can create furnished spaces that are move-in ready that people can book on a monthly basis, completely flexible and digital, we might be solving one of the most pressing needs in the housing industry in Pakistan. That’s what we’re out to build.”

The market is huge and growing. About 500,000 Pakistanis graduate college annually, and one-fifth of those move to city centers, Arif said.

Pakistan’s foreign direct investment in June 2022 was $271 million, according to CEIC. The country’s only unicorn — EMPG, the Emerging Power Market Property Group — came out of the proptech sector.

Given Pakistan’s vast market potential, its housing challenge is not the only area where proptech startups are looking to provide solutions. The workplace is being disrupted and digitized, as well.

“We provide flexible workspace solutions across coworking enterprise offices,” said Omar Shah, co-founder and CEO of Colabs, a Lahore-based proptech firm founded in 2019.

Riaz Haq said…
#Pakistan #PropTech #Startup Scene a Standout Among #EmergingMarkets.A huge, young/growing population needs #housing & other #realestate services.The country’s only #unicorn — EMPG, the Emerging Power Market Property Group — came out of the proptech sector

Having seen the traditional Pakistan real estate market that has existed for decades — one he characterized as grossly inefficient and expensive — Shah realized it was ripe for digital disruption.

“I did this because it was the sharing economy,” he said. “The whole concept of the sharing economy is that the same spaces are used by multiple people. And as we move towards a more flexible world, people realize that these solutions are more organized and better fitted in terms of what we’re all doing.”

Colabs bills itself as the fastest-growing flexible workspace in Pakistan. It provides back-office services; HR payroll accounting, for which it is developing a SaaS platform; and an entrepreneurial division for events, workshops and training that acts as an accelerator for other startups.

Similar to MyGhar’s Arif, Shah sees great opportunity and growth for Pakistan proptech.

“I am a former investment banker and investor,” said Shah. “I spent nine years doing private equity venture capital in London and across emerging markets, including Dubai, Latin America, Turkey and Africa. I moved back three years ago to start COLABS. Today we are the top company in the country in terms of speed of growth. We are managing about 1,200 seats across multiple locations. In the next 12 months we hope to get up to 3,000 seats.”

In March, Colabs raised a $3 million seed round from venture capital firms in Pakistan and internationally, said Shah. “Our investors include Fatima Gobi Ventures, Indus Valley Capital, Shorooq Partners, Kinnow Capital, Zayn Capital, as well as angel investors.”

Also, like MyGhar, COLABS is part of a Singapore-based holding company, said Shah. “It’s very common in Pakistan to have your holding company in Singapore, or the Cayman Islands, or Delaware,” he said. “The holding company makes it easier for investors to raise money at the seed or series level by having a foreign audit.”

Although U.S. investment in Pakistan-based proptech startups remains rare, interest in the market is growing, said Zach Aarons, co-founder and partner at MetaProp, a Manhattan-based early-stage proptech startup investment firm.

“A few reasons why I’m excited about the proptech ecosystem in Pakistan is that it’s such a large and young country,” said Aarons. “It has a favorable regulatory environment for fintech and an inefficient current real estate market. Plus, it has high mobile phone penetration and very quickly growing internet access.”

In fact, over the last 18 months, U.S.-based general technology venture capital firms such as Tiger Global Management and Kleiner Perkins have begun slowly to invest in Pakistan proptech startups, said COLABS’ Shah. However, he admits that Pakistan still trails far behind other emerging proptech markets such as India, Indonesia, Singapore and Vietnam.

As a Pakistan-born immigrant to the U.S., Farhan Masood, president and CTO of Soloinsight, a leading workflow automation and security proptech company founded in 2018 and based in Chicago, has a unique perspective on what’s happening in his homeland.

“I think things are changing now,” Masood said of Pakistan. “Things have drastically changed. If you look at the amount of investments that are coming to Pakistan, proptech is the most [exciting]. Ask any Pakistani, ‘What’s your dream?’ The dream is to own a house.”

In such a huge population, home buyers and renters are met with major inefficiencies due to a lack of product as well as no established financing, government support or conventional mortgage systems, he said. “You don’t have any of that support, so the market isn’t right for a huge amount of business.”

Riaz Haq said…
#Pakistan #PropTech #Startup Scene a Standout Among #EmergingMarkets.A huge, young/growing population needs #housing & other #realestate services.The country’s only #unicorn — EMPG, the Emerging Power Market Property Group — came out of the proptech sector

In such a huge population, home buyers and renters are met with major inefficiencies due to a lack of product as well as no established financing, government support or conventional mortgage systems, he said. “You don’t have any of that support, so the market isn’t right for a huge amount of business.”

As for Soloinsight, it is a somewhat rare Pakistan-U.S. proptech startup, Masood said.

“We started in Pakistan and moved to the United States and now focus on some of the most iconic buildings and Fortune 500 customers,” said Masood, who received the so-called “genius visa” after attending the MIT Business Acceleration Program.

“I’m actually a dropout, but I have a lot of contributions and patents around authentication, facial recognition technology, machine vision and data analytics. I’ve worked with national databases for identity management,” Masood said of his more than 23 years of working to make building infrastructures secure.

Soloinsight has 114 employees, 104 of whom are based in Lahore, with the other 10 in Chicago. The company’s leading product, CloudGate, is a visitor identity and access management (VIAM) platform that delivers security and an intuitive guest and host experience at multiple locations via the cloud. The startup has integrated its product with access control and visitor identity firms, such as Honeywell, Johnson Controls and LenelS2.

Despite the various types and degrees of ongoing chaos in Pakistan — including a parliamentary no-confidence vote in April that ousted Prime Minister Imran Khan and recent catastrophic flooding — MyGhar’s Arif is bullish on the country’s proptech potential.

“It’s a huge opportunity,” he said. “I think the fact that there’s less competition here is the opportunity, which is why we’re all here. It’s why we work day in and night out, regardless of the economic and political turmoil.”

Philip Russo can be reached at
Riaz Haq said…
Fast Food: 2nd largest
industry in Pakistan
by Prof. Dr. Noor Ahmed Memon, (Dean KASBIT).

How big is the fast food industry in Pakistan?
Fast Food Industry in Pakistan is the 2nd largest in Pakistan. accounts for 27% of its value added production and 16% of the total employment in manufacturing sector with an estimated 180 million con- sumers, Pakistan holds the world's eighth largest market when it comes to fast food and food related business.
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistani startups raise $328m in first 9 months of Calendar Year 2022
Despite investor scepticism, amount raised equals 87% of total funding in 2021

In spite of heightened investor scepticism stemming from geopolitical tensions and mounting fear of a global recession, the total funds raised by Pakistani startups, in the nine months of 2022, stood at $328 million. This amounts to 87% of the total funding in 2021, as per Alpha Beta Core’s Deal Tracker.

“The third quarter of 2022 has had more early-stage deals with total seed and pre-seed level rounds accounting for 90% of the total deals. The average deal size in the third quarter of 2022 clocked in at $60 million versus $7.3 million last quarter,” said Khurram Schehzad, CEO of Alpha Beta Core (ABCore).

Speaking to the Express Tribune, startup Investment Specialist, Kapeel Kumar said, “The more room for failure we leave, the more we also create room for success in its wake.”

“The one reason Pakistan is witnessing the boom is because the country is, after all, one of the few untapped frontier markets,” he noted.

“Most investments are within B2B or B2C e-commerce, fintech and logistics. This is a trend that can be observed in a lot of emerging markets as the ecosystem starts to grow,” he added.

“The total deal value in the third quarter was recorded at $48.6 million with a total of 11 deals,” said ABCore CEO Schehzad.

“The top deals closed were DBank at $17.6 million, OneLoad at $11 million, PriceOye at $7.9 million and DealCart at $4.5 million. Other notable deals this quarter were Neem and SnappRetail at $2.5 million each and Mahaana at $2.1 million,” he added.

Explaining the impact of startups shutting operations in Pakistan, Kumar said, “The closing of tech-startups in the last six months is alarming. In Pakistan, this will weigh heavily on the entire startup ecosystem, which is unfair to the many startups performing and creating employment.”

“The success of some startups is being fueled by the country’s growing human capital and rising investments in technology startups,” he added.

“We look forward to a better closing of 2022 as compared to that in 2021. Pakistani startups still have much better survival rates (both in terms of size and numbers) than the rest of the region or the world,” Kumar commented.

“Owing to our massive population, we have an incredible potential of growth within us,” said Noman Ahmed, CEO of SI Global Solutions.

He highlighted that “Fintech and e-commerce alike have brought in a significant chunk of this funding. The need of the hour is to create consistency and compliance, and support may be needed in order to sail through this passage to enable startups to continually thrive ahead. With this new found funding, we must collectively focus on bringing Pakistan at par with the Western world. There’s absolutely no doubt that Pakistan is positively brimming with talent.”

“As leading professionals in the tech world, it is upto us to revolutionise Pakistan’s technological landscape by nurturing, guiding and shaping this pool of talent. It is imperative that this work begins at the university level. Final projects and thesis submissions should focus on creativity and new ideas that may be brought to life with support from the startups on ground. We must rise to the challenge and work on expanding our horizons within the tech world,” urged the SI Global CEO.
Riaz Haq said…
Growth of the Consumer Class Focused on Asia
Katharina Buchholz,

Oct 18, 2021

Between the years 2020 and 2030, almost 76 million Indonesians will join the so-called consumer class, a group of people who spend more than $11 (in 2011 PPP dollars) per day. This will cause the country to become the fourth biggest consumer market in the world behind the giants of the field – China, India and the United States.

Even today, 55 percent – or 2.2 billion people - of the global consumer class live in Asia, especially in the world’s two biggest consumer markets, India and China. Despite the fact that Indian consumer class growth is outpacing China’s, the latter country is expected to remain the biggest consumer market in 2030. This is according to data by research company World Data Lab, published by Brookings Institution.

The 52 million Bangladeshis joining the consumer class by the same year will make their home country rise quickly in the list of the biggest consumer markets, catapulting it from rank 28 into rank 11. Pakistan and the Philippines will add almost 60 million and almost 38 million people to the consumer class, respectively, by 2030, which will cause both countries to rise seven spots in the ranking of the world’s biggest consumer markets.

Among the 30 biggest consumer markets, Asian countries are expected to exhibit the biggest absolute growth of the consumer class over the coming years. While the expansion of the United States’ consumer class by 24 million people still lands it in rank 8 of the biggest growers, other established markets like France, the UK, Spain or Canada are barely growing anymore, causing them to rank lower on the list of the world’s biggest consumer markets as they are being overtaken by developing economies’ markets. This also applied to developed economies in Asia, like South Korea.

The development can be seen in relation to few people remaining outside the consumer class in developed countries but is also connected to populations in these countries growing more slowly or even stagnating and shrinking. This phenomenon can be observed in Japan, Germany and Italy where the size of the consumer class is actually expected to shrink until 2030.

Riaz Haq said…
What was Pakistan's Private Consumption Expenditure in 2022?
Pakistan Private Consumption Expenditure was reported at 324.824 USD bn in Dec 2022. This records an increase from the previous number of 290.625 USD bn for Dec 2021. See the table below for more data.

Pakistan Private Consumption Expenditure was reported at 324.824 USD bn in Dec 2022. This records an increase from the previous number of 290.625 USD bn for Dec 2021.
Pakistan Private Consumption Expenditure data is updated yearly, averaging 31.179 USD bn from Dec 1960 to 2022, with 63 observations.
The data reached an all-time high of 324.824 USD bn in 2022 and a record low of 3.084 USD bn in 1960.
Pakistan Private Consumption Expenditure data remains in an active status in CEIC and is reported by CEIC Data.
The data is categorized under World Trend Plus’s Global Economic Monitor – Table: Nominal GDP: Private Consumption Expenditure: USD: Annual: Asia.

CEIC shifts year-end for annual Private Consumption Expenditure and converts it into USD. Private Consumption Expenditure is calculated as the sum of Household and NPISHs consumption. The Pakistan Bureau of Statistics provides Private Consumption Expenditure in local currency based on SNA 2008 with benchmark year 2015-2016. The State Bank of Pakistan average market exchange rate is used for currency conversions. Private Consumption Expenditure is reported in annual frequency, ending in June of each year. Private Consumption Expenditure prior to 2016 is based on SNA 2008 with benchmark year 2005-2006. Private Consumption Expenditure prior to 2000 is sourced from the World Bank.
Riaz Haq said…
Jazz and Huawei Successfully Accomplished Nationwide Rollout for FDD Massive MIMO in Pakistan

Jazz and Huawei have commercially deployed FDD (Frequency Division Duplexing) Massive MIMO (Multiple Input and Multiple Output) solution based on 5G technology in a large scale. The solution has been developed and tailored to the needs of boosting network capacity and user experience.
This customized solution has been the first launch of Jazz and Huawei, supporting Jazz leap into the 4.9G domain. This innovative solution has tremendously enhanced the network capacities along with superior 4G experience for the valued subscribers. The average network traffic increased by around 30% and the average single user speed increased by around 170%.

Jazz’s Chief Technology Officer, Khalid Shehzad said, “We see that our customers are increasingly using high-bandwidth applications which resultantly puts pressure on existing network capabilities. Massive MIMO essentially allows us the freedom to provide more data at greater speeds, enabling our customers to use the enhanced services on their existing 4G devices. Network speeds will be faster than ever, which will significantly improve the end-user experience. Jazz is committed to developing an ecosystem that supports the government’s Digital Pakistan vision and the evolving technology needs of individuals and businesses.”

Huawei provides the industry's unique intelligent beam scheduling and intelligent beamforming technology which are native for 5G. Massive MIMO improves the capability of the handsets to transmit more efficiently. Currently Huawei FDD Massive MIMO has been deployed in more than 70 networks and over 20,000 units have been shipped. The level of collaboration between Jazz and Huawei goes beyond to more domains. For example, the first 400G transmission, the first core network cloudification, the first large-scale commercial use of VoLTE, and the first 3G sunset city. In Pakistan, Jazz maintains a leading position in network performance and innovations, and it leads the development of the entire ICT industry.
Riaz Haq said…
During the year 2022 (December), 832,339 Pakistanis proceeded abroad for the purpose of employment.

Since inception of the Bureau in the year 1971, more than 10 million emigrants have been provided overseas employment duly registered with the Bureau of Emigration & Overseas Employment. During the year 2015, highest number of Pakistanis(946,571) proceeded abroad for the purpose of employment. During the year 2022 (December), 832,339 Pakistanis proceeded abroad for the purpose of employment.
Riaz Haq said…
#India's #Internet Growth is Stalling! #Mobile internet subscriber growth has slipped to single digits from scorching double digits between 2016 and 2020. Sale of #mobilephones fell to 151 million units last year, down from a peak of 168 million in 2021.

By Soutik Biswas

With more than a billion users, India boasts the world's second largest mobile phone market.

Yet, internet growth in this vast market appears to have stalled.

In October 2022, the country's telecom regulator counted 790 million wireless broadband subscribers, people who access the internet on mobile phones. That was barely a million more subscribers than what it recorded in August 2021. Growth in mobile internet subscribers has now slipped to single digits from scorching double digits between 2016 and 2020.

Smartphones are the main gateway to go online - and this is where growth is flattening. India currently has some 650 million smartphone users but the pace of growth has slowed. Sale of mobile phones fell to 151 million units last year, down from a peak of 168 million in 2021, according to Counterpoint, a market research firm. A single-digit growth in sales is predicted this year.

Up until three years ago, users were buying a new smartphone every 14-16 months, according to IDC, another market research firm. But now they are looking for an upgrade every 22 months or so.

One reason is that smartphone prices have gone up since the pandemic because of rising component costs, a weakening rupee and supply chain disruptions involving China, the world's largest smartphone maker. Nearly 90% of the more than 300 components in India-made smartphones are imported.

At home, a slowing economy, loss of jobs and a resultant squeeze on incomes means less money in the wallet for a pricier new phone. "The slowdown in internet growth should be seen as an indicator of the state of the economy," says Nikhil Pahwa, a digital rights campaigner.

The average price of a smartphone is now around 22,000 rupees ($269; £220), up from 15,000 rupees two years ago, according to Navkendar Singh of IDC. For a market of its size, India is remarkably price sensitive: 80% of the devices sold here cost less than 20,000 rupees. "This is a real cause of concern. The world's second largest mobile phone market has a smartphone penetration which is nowhere close to China, which has the largest market," says Mr Singh.

Some like Anuj Gandhi, founder of Plug and Play Entertainment, wonder whether India's smartphone market has hit the buffers. "Where will more growth come from when there are so many people still living in poverty?" he says.

India has more than 350 million users of "dumbphones" - basic handsets, or feature phones - who can potentially move to smartphones if they can afford it. Almost half of these people use devices that cost less than 1,500 rupees.

Stung by higher prices of devices and data, only 35 million Indians upgraded from feature to smartphones in 2022, compared to 60 million every year before Covid struck, according to Tarun Pathak of Counterpoint. "The feature to smart phone migration has slowed down considerably," he says.

What is not always accounted for is a thriving and informal second-hand [refurbished phones] market that could be fulfilling the need for "cheap" smartphones. "The second-hand market is meeting some of this demand. But we are not really growing the base," says Mr Singh.

A slowdown in internet growth isn't good news for India. Without a smartphone, it becomes difficult for many to access government welfare benefits, rations and vaccines, among other things. More than 250 million transactions are being made every day this month alone on the Unified Payments Interface (UPI), a government-backed real-time cashless transaction platform using mobile applications. India's central bank talks about a "less-cash, less-card society" by 2025.

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