Aiming to create a super app for the country, Venezuela-based distribution application Yumi announced on Friday that it had raised $4 million to expand its Dark Store delivery activities across Latin America. Fund supporters included Y Combinator, Justin Matin, co-founder of Tinder, Canary, Hostel Fund, Necessary Ventures, and co-founder of Taskus. Total investments include pre-seed capital raised in 2020.
“This seems like a counter bet, but Yami has very quickly become Venezuela’s number one super app and has proven that the team can do business in a difficult region,” Matin said in a statement. “Now Vicente and the rest of the husband’s team will expand into more traditional theatrical markets, including the necessary experience and support to address the inevitable challenges they will face.” Delicious founder and CEO Vicente Javars launched the company in 2020 and is currently part of the Y Combinator Summer 2021 convocation. Born in Venezuela, Xavier came to the United States to attend school and worked in postmats, wafers, and growth marketing at Getaround before Yami started.
Javers was the remote CEO compared to last year, stuck in the U.S. due to travel bans, but said he was carrying most of it. The yummy app can be downloaded for free, and the company charges a delivery fee or merchant. Unlike some of its food delivery competitors, Xavier TechCrunch Yami’s fees are “lowest in the market” so they don’t affect the merchant’s ability to use the app.
The company is pulling together additional key elements for its super application strategy, including launching a ride-sharing vertical this year. Delicious has already connected more than 1,200 merchants with thousands of customers. And, in the last year, the company has completed more than 600,000 deliveries of food, groceries, alcohol, and shopping. It has reached $1 million in monthly gross merchandise volume and monthly revenue is growing by 38%.
The political and economic challenges the country has faced over the past eight years have led to the recent adoption of the U.S. dollar, Xavier said. In some cases, up to 70% of transactions take place on the ground in dollars. He said it has protected businesses against hyperinflation and ultimately created opportunities for startups to start working in Venezuela.