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Grabr raises $3.5M for P2P international delivery

Funding from RBV Capital, N-Trans Group, and angel investors fuels growing peer-to-peer marketplace

Financial trends and news by Ronny Kerr
August 25, 2016 | Comments
Short URL: http://vator.tv/n/46ed

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Every time my mom flies south to visit her sisters, brother, and millions of nieces and nephews in Nicaragua, she travels with more suitcases than she has limbs. It’s not because that’s how she packs; normally, she likes to pack as light as anybody. But by the time her flight rolls around, she has received a laundry list of requests for electronics, clothes, and other items easier (and sometimes cheaper) to get in the U.S.

The fact is that people are always traveling around the world, and those people could be making a little extra cash by carrying unique items to their destinations.



That’s the idea behind Grabr, a San Francisco-based company that today announced a new $3.5 million seed round of funding led by Alexey Repik of RBV Capital with participation from Konstantin Nikolaev of N-Trans Group and other angel investors. The announced funds includes a previously announced $1 million angel round.

Grabr works by first taking a description of the item you want to buy. You can either paste a link to the exact item, or you can fill out a form, including a picture of the item along with its name, description, price, and quantity desired. For example, a few individuals in Buenos Aires have recently made requests for a PlayStation 4 console, a pair of New Balance shoes, and an Apple Watch case.



The company specifically pitches itself as a marketplace to purchase items not sold where you live, "unique cultural items," and items that simply cost too much to ship through traditional means. Grabr has even curated its own collections of items, in case you can’t think of what you’d want to order from around the world.

For travelers, Grabr offers the incentive of financial rewards, which range from a low as $5 to over $100. It’s not meant to be something you do for a living, but rather a way to make a little extra cash on flights you’re already taking.

“We are inspired by peer-to-peer and sharing economies as well as marketplaces, and we wanted to combine these two to create one that would influence people's lives in different countries by giving them access to global shopping and making travel more affordable,” said Daria Rebenok, CEO and cofounder of Grabr, in a prepared statement.

Grabr's business model today largely depends on a seven percent service fee applied to all completed orders, or "grabs" as the company calls them. A spokesperson for the company confirmed for me that this fee applies to the total price of the grab (including delivery and price of the item).

Founded in 2015, Grabr has grown to support 50,000 users on the platform, though it wouldn’t share specifics on how many orders take place per month. The platform is available today in the U.S. and all around the world, and its popularity is especially growing in Southeast Asia, South America, Russia, and Ukraine.

Editor's Note: Our 6th Annual Vator Splash LA conference is coming up on October 13 at the Loews Hotel in Santa Monica. Speakers include Mark Cuban (one of the hosts of Shark Tank and owner of the Dallas Mavericks); Brian Lee (Founder & CEO, Honest Company); Leura Fine (Founder & CEO, Laurel & Wolf ); Nick Green (Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Thrive Market); Tri Tran (CEO & Co-founder, Munchery); Adam Goldenberg (Founder & CEO, JustFab); Andre Haddad (CEO, Turo); Mike Jones (Founder, Science) and many more. Join us! REGISTER HERE.


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