Recent News

Vietnamese logistics startup EcoTruck receives US$1.7 million in pre-Series A funding



19/9/2018 – EcoTruck, a logistics startup based in Ho Chi Minh city said that it has raised a US$1.7 million pre-Series A funding, which will be used for enhancing their platform and talent recruitment.

South Korean investors Nextrans, FuturePlay, Access Ventures LLC participated in the round, along with Viet Capital Ventures, a newly established investment firm associated with IDG Ventures Vietnam’s vice president Pham Hop Pho.

The startup had also previously raised US$300,000 in its seed round. With this bridge round, the startup had so far raised an accumulated funding capital of about US$2 million.

Founded in 2017, EcoTruck acts as a middleman between merchants and logistic operations. Its platform works with more than 90 logistics vendors in Vietnam, who are managing 700 container trucks in two hubs: Hai Phong and Ho Chi Minh City.

Its centralized platform leverages the sharing economy model and data intelligence to lower costs and streamline operations.

This provides a viable solution to the logistics industry which is challenged by poor infrastructure, large inventory, and an outdated process which still involve manual paperwork and emails to facilitate calls to conduct.

The industry is even plagued of corruption where there are kickbacks between supply chain employees and logistics vendors, which unnecessarily drive up operating and shipping cost. According to Le, these inefficiencies cost merchants 25 percent of their revenue to offsetting logistics cost.

“With technologies and the right business model for a much bigger scale, EcoTruck can operate with a much lower cost, resulting in much lower end prices of goods,” said Hoang Anh. adding that the service provided by EcoTruck has helped reduce logistics costs for its partners as much as 20 percent.

The platform also provides various data analytics and insight which includes suggesting the most suitable vendor to dispatch the merchant’s freight or calculating the most optimized delivery route. Besides, merchants can select their preferred logistics vendors who are bidding for their job as per to their own criteria.

Meanwhile, for logistics operators, EcoTruck allows them to maximize their truckload, helping them to increase their revenue, while merchants can save time on having to manage shipping processes that were lengthy and complex, as well as reduce their transportation expenditure through their transparent bidding system.

So far, EcoTruck claims that there are 80 merchants who use their portal regularly. These businesses transport a range of goods including fertilizer, rubber, frozen fruit and vegetables, bioproducts and even more delicate and hazardous cargo like chemicals.

The startup completed 820 orders in August 2018 and even recorded a trucking GMV of US$130,000 in August while its trucking revenue stood at US$6,500. It also earned an additional US$2500 in revenue, providing other services including customs and freight booking.

Indonesian B2B Marketplace Ralali secures US$7 Million to Expand Business Segment Solutions

18/9/2018 – Indonesian online B2B marketplace Ralali has today closed a funding round worth US$7 million led by Japan’s SBI Group. The round also saw the participation of Southeast Asian VC Addventures and global incubator Digital Garage.

This funding round was raised to accelerate Ralali’s mission to serve 30 million SMEs in the country and its expansion towards the global market by providing a wider range of business segment solutions.

The capital in part, will be used for the company’s expansion plans to penetrate the Thailand market in collaboration with Siam Cement Group (SCG), the parent company of participating investor Addventures.

SCG is one of the leaders in building materials and industrial supplies in Thailand, and Ralali plans to leverage its business network to kickstart its expansion. It is expected to begin in Q1 2019 through building materials and MRO (maintenance, repair, and operation & office supplies) categories first.

“B2B ecommerce platform in emerging market is still fragmented in terms of supply chain,” said Ralali’s Founder Joseph Aditya. “We strive to enable the business to have better integrations in terms of products offering combined with the services in one platform.”

The B2B marketplace founder also adds that the company plans to achieve a gross sales target of US$1 billion by 2020.

Founded in 2013, Ralali provides a B2B ecommerce platform for manufacturers to sell directly to shop owners and merchants. The startup has more than 10,000 suppliers in 20 cities and connects around 150,000 wholesalers and retailers.

The startup initially operates in MRO but later expanded to other business segmentation such as food supplies, building material, and automotive supplies. Its annual transactions have grown five-fold compared to previous year, with an average basket size per transaction around US$2000.

SBI Investment Executive officer Tomoyuki Nii commented on the deal, saying that “We believe the B2B e-Commerce platform will have a promising growth and we can support the company in the area of fintech such as introducing a financial lending platform to it.”

The investment makes Ralali SBI’s latest Indonesian portfolio company after the Japanese giant had earlier announced investments in fintech firms Taralite and Investree.

Ralali had last raised US$2.5 million in June 2015 from Beenos Partners, Cyber Venture Partners and East Ventures.