Today, the Internet is full of various platforms that connect freelancers that are seeking job opportunities. Usually these platforms cover the domains related to design, writing, web/app development and other similar industries. However, it’s almost impossible to find a niche on-demand staffing platform for gig workers in the retail, hospitality, and entertainment industries; especially in the MENA region. And this is precisely why the Saudi-based startup, Sabbar, was created.
Founded in 2019 by Mohamed T. Ibrahim, Abdulrahman AlMudaiheem, and Afnan Sherbeeni, Sabbar was created to find a solution to an unnoticed problem with the vision of “creating a world where everyone can work”. The unique recruiting platform targets a niche yet demanding market where it connects blue-collar staff with temporary work opportunities in businesses operating across retail, entertainment, and hospitality sectors. The Riyadh-headquartered startup enables these businesses to hire temporary staff during peak hours or high seasons, on an hourly basis, from its list of vetted candidates.
Sabbar’s business model is commission based where it charges the businesses commission rates depending on the hours they book. The commission rates vary by role, urgency fulfillment and the day of the week.
Today, Sabbar proudly claims that it has over 60 clients in the kingdom that trust its services where it can fulfill urgent requests within 4 hours only and manage to help clients reduce up to 40% in operational costs.
Funding and Achievements of Sabbar
Due to its outstanding success in a very short period of time, Sabbar managed to raise $5.6 million in less than 3 years. In December 2019, it raised $1.5 million in a seed round led by Dubai’s VentureSouq. And in July 2021, Sabbar raised $4 million in a pre-Series A round led by STV with participation from previous backers Derayah VC and SEEDRA Venture.
Sabbar aims to use these funds in expanding its services to capture a market of $11 billion of temporary blue-collar staffing across MENA and Pakistan. Sabbar is also expanding its scope to cover warehousing, logistics, and tourism industries. With more than 70,000 gig workers on their registration waiting list, the startup is aiming to change the status quo of how people perceive blue-collar jobs and provide its workforce with opportunities to upskill, as well as get full-time perks and benefits.
It’s worth mentioning that in July 2021, was among the 12 startups selected for ‘Google for Startups Accelerator Middle East and North Africa’, a three-month digital accelerator programme for Seed to Series A technology startups based in the region. In addition, Sabbar’s co-founder, the inspiring Afnan Sherbeeni, was featured at Forbes Middle East as one of the top 10 women in MENA’s tech scene.
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