This morning, Malaysian B2B e-procurement marketplace Dropee announced their success in acquiring RM1.4 million in seed funding in a round led by early stage-focused Vynn Capital.
Incepted in 2016, Dropee’s one-stop marketplace aimed to disrupt the B2B supply chain by connecting product suppliers directly with SME owners, offering both sides a streamlined fulfilment process that can handle bulk purchases using a host of tech-enabled solutions.
These solutions include automated ordering, digitalised documentation, easy comparison tools, and easy product tracking across supply chains, among other features.
Led by co-founders Lennise Ng and Aizat Rahim, Dropee currently serves the metropolitan regions of Malaysia, with their target market focused around Kuala Lumpur, Penang, and Johor.
Speaking on their plans going forward, Aizat explained that the plan for their newly acquired capital was to lead into two distinct expansion strategies—new products and new markets.
“We aim to build a new product line to offer better solutions for our existing customers, and to expand our operations geographically,” he said. “As of current, most of our customers are based in the Klang Valley—hence a portion of this fund will be used on Dropee’s expansion to the northern and southern regions of Malaysia such as Penang and Johor, before we advance further into the rest of the Southeast Asian market.”
Expansion plans for the rest of Southeast Asia include Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam in the near future, and all this is indicative of a brand ready to build upon its already impressive base of over 800 brands, over 6,000 SKUs, and over 1,000 businesses. Among Dropee’s clientele include names like Unilever, Network Foods, and Lee’s Frozen Foods.
When quizzed on how they plan to successfully implement their plans for expansion, Aizat explained that aside from just expanding their presence physically, fixing mental conceptions among their customers was also key.
“We’re on a mission to help companies transform their businesses digitally to simplify processes and accelerate growth,” he said. “However, implementation of transformative technology requires education.”
“From our experience, businesses in Malaysia still require more understanding on how technology like ours can help take them to the next level,” he said. “That’s why we actively participate in numerous events (B2B Online Asia, eTail Asia, RetailEX ASEAN, etc) involving he supply chain, retail and FMCG industry, allowing us to preach about the benefits of an integrated supply chain using tech.”
A Partnership Built On Trust
Additionally, Aizat gave his thoughts on the link-up between Dropee and Vynn Capital, saying that it was a combination of factors that helped Dropee gain the confidence of the VC firm.
“The founding team of Dropee has a strong network and deep understanding of the supply-chain industry, and the B2B market has also started to gain more exposure and education so it’s easier to onboard even more potential customers within this space,” he said.
“This has allowed us to better understand the problems that our customers face then incorporate technological solutions into our product for them,” he added. “This in turn gives us the upper hand to replicate and scale the same technologies that we’ve to build into other countries with lesser friction.”
It was mentioned also that through their new partnership, Dropee would now be able to rely on a partner with an extensive network of contacts in their target space.
“First of all, Vynn Capital’s team including their partners and board members have direct and indirect investments and influence in the space that we’re focusing on,” Aizat said. “Secondly, the partners are actively contributing to our growth, and as such they’ve shared a lot of their relevant contacts and networks to assist our business, even before we decided to fundraise.”
“Most importantly, we’ve known each other even before venturing into this partnership, which is why it’s safe to say we know Vynn Capital will act in the best interest of Dropee.”
Dropee’s previous funding came during a round with undisclosed angel investors along with a grant from Cradle Fund. Their immediate plans are to introduce a product that will target larger brands, with the goal to unify the supply chain industry.
Feature Image Credit: Dropee