Category Archives: Startups

WeChat Is Maturing: Leveraging Chinese Social Networks To Grow

This is an interesting post that first appeared on TechNode.

According to Ms. Emmy Teo, CEO of Fashory, the opportunity today lies in being able to show consumers where to buy the things they are interested in, especially if something catches their eye on a TV show. As an example, Fashory has been able to increase traffic and conversions dramatically using a combination of a push and pull strategy, to post content within communities of their target customers, and at the same time, leading interested customers to their WeChat account.

Secondly, marketers should understand the different social networks out there and that each one of them fulfils a different purpose for their target consumers.

Lastly, videos are now a crucial factor to attracting followers. Yoli, an online platform for English learning, regularly posts videos on Weibo to get the attention of their target users. This channel feeds Yoli’s customer conversion funnel, and eventually allows users to convert by registering on their WeChat account.

Source: WeChat Is Maturing: Advice For Leveraging Chinese Social Networks – TechNode

A look back at 2015: the year in Southeast Asia ecommerce

Source: Wikipedia Commons
Source: Wikipedia Commons

An article published on Tech In Asia on a few key takeaways from developments in the Southeast Asian ecommerce industry.

  1. Consolidation will rise in the B2C ecommerce space: A few instances of acquisitions include Luxola’s sale to LVMH and Lazada’s acquisition of Lamido.
  2. Digital agencies will adapt or go extinct: Agencies have been looking to develop their presence in the ecommerce space. An example is Publicis’ acquisition of BysoftChina, a Shanghai-based ecommerce agency.
  3. The marketplace space gets overcrowded: A range of foreign and domestic competitors have flooded the marketplace space, in hopes of carving out a niche for themselves in a market that is still wide open.

Source: A look back at 2015: the year in Southeast Asia ecommerce – Tech in Asia

This ecommerce startup is focused on Asia’s small, often-ignored markets

Source: Tech In Asia

Kaymu, a Rocket Internet-funded online marketplace for individuals and small shopkeepers, was launched almost two and a half years ago in Pakistan. Its business model relies on entering frontier markets in Asia where modern trade channels (i.e. hypermarkets, convenience stores) have not yet set foot.

The founders at Kaymu believe that the quick adoption of smartphones can help develop the ecommerce market as the primary retail channel even before the traditional brick-and-mortar retailers enter the market.

However, the open marketplace model employed by Kaymu faces several challenges such as counterfeit goods and increasing competition among local startups. Given the already low margins in frontier markets in addition to the challenges faced, it will be interesting to see how Kaymu continues to grow.

Source: This ecommerce startup is focused on Asia’s small, often-ignored markets | TechInAsia

India’s Yepme raises $75 mln from investors led by Khazanah


In series of funding for upcoming fashion startups, India’s YepMe recently raised USD75 million from investors led by Malaysia’s state fund, Khazanah National Berhad.

Unlike many other fashion startups, YepMe makes its own brand name clothing line, in addition to selling other brands on its website.

Source: India’s Yepme raises $75 mln from investors led by Malaysia’s Khazanah | Reuters

Startup brings one-hour wine delivery to Asian cities

Source: Tech In Asia

Entering the already-competitive market of online-to-offline (O2O) space in China, new wine startup BottlesXO, aims to provide consumers with quick delivery of mid-priced wines in major Chinese cities, with plans for future expansion to other cities in Asia.

The app allows consumers to shop for wines and also suggests food pairings to go along with each bottle. In addition, the app features the history of the type of wine, together with photos and descriptions of the vineyard.

So far, the company operates in Suzhou and Shanghai and has raised a USD1.7 million Series A round. They are preparing to raise their next round of funding to help them expand to other cities in Asia.

Source: Startup brings one-hour wine delivery to Asian cities

Snapdeal will now refund cash instantly

Source: Tech in Asia

One of India’s largest ecommerce companies, Snapdeal, announced that it will be introducing a new instand refunds system in its store, to attract more first time users to shop on its site.

Snapdeal has agreed to use the system refund all types of purchases, including offline and Cash-On-Delivery transactions. Snapdeal’s announcement comes after Flipkart made a similar move to provide refunds within 24 hours of receiving a returned product.

Source: Snapdeal will now refund cash instantly | Tech In Asia

Meal-kit delivery Black Garlic launches in Jakarta

Source: Tech in Asia

Black Garlic is a meal-kit delivery service. It sends pre-packaged groceries in a box. All ingredients are portioned and labeled, and there’s a step-by-step guide for each dish. The idea is to mix convenience with the joy of cooking.

The target audience for this startup’s product is arguably narrow. It’s a product for busy urban folks who don’t want to miss out on the experience of a healthy, home-cooked meal.

The box contains three meals for two and costs IDR 325,000 (US$24). That makes roughly US$4 per individual meal. Delivery is free. The price is comparable to what one would pay for one meal at a mid-range restaurant in Indonesia.

According to CEO Michael Saputra, urbanization and more demand for organically-grown food indicate the emergence of LOHAS in Indonesian cities.

Source: Meal-kit delivery Black Garlic launches in Jakarta | Tech in Asia