Sweden’s postbox startup Instabox raises $90 mln Series B from EQT, others

Sweden’s Instabox, a delivery locker service provider, said it has raised a $90 million Series B round, led by EQT Ventures, to further invest in its technology that will enhance the value-chain for customers and merchants, plus expansion outside of Sweden.

The 2015-founded Instabox says is the largest and fastest-growing last-mile logistics startup in Sweden, growing by over 300% annually and delivering more than one million parcels each month, with over two million users across the country.

“The shipping industry consists of ancient postal companies using fossil fuels and fossil tech …  the new funding will allow us to take our super-fast, hassle-free and fossil-fuel-free shipping to millions of more consumers across Europe and spark a renaissance in online shopping, just as we have done in Sweden,” said CEO Alexis Priftis.

The global parcels market was worth almost $430bn in 2019, a significant increase from $380bn the year reviously, showing an already huge market opportunity now with unprecedented acceleration. Instabox offers fast, hassle-free delivery across its locations in Sweden — with a maximum of six hours between the merchant and the consumer — through its smart locker network, striving to revolutionise last-mile delivery.

The technology platform provides the team with real-time, end-to-end tracking of all deliveries, allowing for optimisation at each step of the way. Efficiently consolidating deliveries through a hyper-local fulfilment network brings not only speed, convenience, and cost benefits, but also creates sustainable delivery alternatives for consumers and merchants alike.

Founded in 2015 by Alexis Priftis, Staffan Gabrielsson, and Johan Lundin, the idea was originally to build an API for physical goods. Realising the difficulty of creating a new player in an ecosystem with century-old market leaders, the team started with e-commerce and approached a well-known Swedish pharmacy to deliver its packages with a same-day service to its eight smart lockers in Stockholm. In less than 15 minutes, the team had its first order. Emails from customers amazed by the speed and convenience of delivery followed. The need from consumers was obvious and so Instabox was born.

“Instabox is bringing tech DNA and customer-centricity to one of the largest and oldest industries in the economy, and the market feedback is crystal clear in their fantastic growth,” said Ashley Lundström, Partner at EQT Ventures.

The service has been used by millions of Swedes shopping from merchants such as H&M, Ikea, Apotea and Boozt. The company is operating more than 1,000 automated parcel machines in Sweden, Denmark and Norway and has consistently grown by more than 300% per year since its start.