Launched just over a year ago, the female-founded ‘phygital’ startup has big plans at home and away following participation in the 212Founders accelerator.
Moroccan eyewear ecommerce startup, LNKO, has signalled its intention to expand into the UAE after closing a DH 3 million ($335K) investment from the investment arm of Moroccan bank, CDG Capital, through its 212Founders acceleration programme.
Launched as recently as April 2020, LNKO was founded by Maha and Malak Bennani, and actually began life as a contact lens subscription service. However, the Bennani sisters soon realised that they would eventually hit a wall, with market research suggesting that the market wasn’t quite as deep as first assumed. They pivoted to focus on providing B2C eyewear service.
There are two key elements that the founders believe have been critical to LNKOs success. Firstly, in addition to offering protective and corrective glasses, the startup has always held the aim of making fashionable eyewear affordable and offers all adult pairs for DH 550 and kids pairs for DH 349. Secondly, the founders have often referred to their business as ‘phygital’, in that it digitises access to its products via its ecommerce platform, but also harnesses physical stand sales to stay close to its growing customer bases.
On that second point, expansion plans will affect both digital and physical aspects.
“We intend to begin consolidating our position in Morocco by expanding our physical points of sale, beginning with major cities such as Casablanca, Rabat, and Marrakech,” the sisters revealed according to AfrikanHeroes.com . “We have a plan in place to build technical tools as well as an aggressive recruitment strategy. Second, we intend to expand our online sales to MENA, beginning with the United Arab Emirates.”