COLABS, Pakistan’s fastest growing workspace, has successfully raised $ 3 million in a seed round to expand its network across the country through spaces and tech platform.
The latest investment has enabled the Lahore-based startup to open new offices and onboard potential talent of the country as it aims to knit together a community of 100,000 entrepreneurs and freelancers in Pakistan, starting with 10,000 members within the next two years.
For the first time, Indus Valley Capital, Zayn Capital and Fatima Gobi Ventures – the three leading Pakistan focused VCs, are investing together in a startup and has led the round. Some other key participants of the round include Shorooq Partners, Kinnow Capital, Muir Capital, Sai Ventures, and some key angels, including Turner Novak, William Hockey, and Teddy Himler.
Commenting on the recent development, Co-Founder and CEO COLABS Omar Shah, said, “We had founded COLABS to help accelerate the Pakistani startup ecosystem and we’re very proud of what we have achieved in a little over three years. Even though we’re mainly seen as a coworking operator, what we have built is a solid foundation to make it easy for freelancers, startups, and even international companies entering Pakistan, start and manage their businesses. Today anyone looking to start a company in Pakistan could use COLABS not only as a place where they work but also as a partner that manages their different back-office functions.”
Discussing on his company’s vision, he added, “With the capital we have raised from leading investors today, we’re now looking to turn our offerings into software-based solutions and productized services that could also be extended to people and institutions outside of our network, in addition to bringing on world-class talent to our existing team of rockstars.”
Sharing his experience with COLABS, Founder and Managing Partner of Indus Valley Capital Aatif Awan, said, “The first time I visited COLABS, I found the community and energy to be a microcosm of the fast-growing Pakistani tech ecosystem. We’re thrilled to partner with the
team to help them build the leading platform and community that will power the growth of Pakistani tech across startups, freelancers and global companies expanding into Pakistan.”
While speaking on COLABS progress in a short span of time, Co-Founder & Managing Partner of Zayn Capital Faisal Aftab, stated, “I have closely watched COLABS grow into one of the key players in Pakistan’s startup ecosystem. We were fortunate enough to have met some of the startup we invested in, at their spaces. Omar and his team continue to do excellent work to accelerate the growth of the startup ecosystem here and we are excited to join their journey in serving tens of thousands of founders and freelancers across Pakistan.”
COLABS – Pakistan’s Fastest Growing Workspace
Lahore-based startup, COLABS, established back in 2019 with a vision to redefine the future of work in Pakistan. Driven by innovation, COLABS has placed itself at the heart of the startup agenda in Pakistan through its events, networking forums and startup facilitations.
COLABS facilities are designed and built out by Omar Shah, a former private equity and venture investor, and his twin brother Ali Shah, who operates long established family-run real estate and development firm SABCON. Its leadership team also includes Fatima Mazhar (COO) who was one of the early executives at Careem and had helped the company scale in many international markets. COLABS started as a coworking platform with a state-of-the-art facility in Lahore but has since evolved to offer several additional services and tools to entrepreneurs and freelancers, including educational bootcamps and a SaaS platform for back-office solutions such as business incorporation, talent sourcing and management, payroll processing and legal and tax compliance.
The organisation is creating new work experiences as till now it has hosted 250+ startup community-relevant events annually with an aggregate attendance of over 200,000 significant visitors to date. The facility has seen an ever creasing community members, comprising right talent and resources, raising investment and supported several SMEs, entrepreneurs and freelancers to build and grow their businesses through its spaces and tech platform.
The COLABS community today has 1200+ members and over 100 companies across multiple facilities in Pakistan. Our community is a mix of freelancers, startups, SMEs and MNCs. COLABS today has a network of 100+ ecosystem partners across universities, VC funds, corporates, government and industry leaders.
COLABS enables local and international companies to enter, startup and accelerate growth in the Pakistani market fostering a diverse and interconnected ecosystem through our entrepreneurial initiative, COGROW. With this platform, we have hosted over 250 events and 200,000+ visitors since inception to support the Pakistani ecosystem.
Additionally, we offer back-office support, COLABS Business Solutions is focused on our SaaS-based business services platform to cater to all back-office needs such as payroll processing, attendance management, legal services etc. for growing startups and international companies entering Pakistan.
COLABS Key Investors:
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