Category: social commerce

Going after social commerce for sportspeople, Millions gets $10M



Millions.co, a social commerce platform geared towards professional and semi-professional athletes wanting help to monetize their fanbase by selling merch and/or on-demand video, has grabbed $10 million in funding led by Boston-based Volition Capital.

The round is being loosely pegged as a Series A as the seasoned team behind Millions self-funded the first wave of development to get the platform launched.

The founding team includes CEO Matt Whitteker, a boxing gym owner who co-founded the supply chain data management unicorn Assent Compliance and NoNotes.com; CMO Brandon Austin, co-founder of Go-Fish Cam; and, in advisor roles, Adrian Salamunovic, co-founder of DNA 11 and CanvasPop; Scott Whitteker (Fight For The Cure) and Bruce Buffer (a veteran sports announcer).

Millions‘ launched its fan engagement social commerce platform in April — with an initial three products for pro/semi-pro athletes to pitch at their followers: Namely custom merchandize (including a free design service); ask-me-anything personalized videos; and a pay-per-view streaming offering that lets fans pay to tune into a live stream of their favorite sportsperson.

The startup’s initial plan had been to build just an ecommerce and merchandising platform but, having built that component, Salamunovic says the team decided to bundle in video products — such as personalized videos and “‘democratiszing’ pay-per-view (PPV). 

“Our biggest advantage and differentiator is that we are strictly focused on the sports world and fan engagement,” he tells TechCrunch. “The obvious indirect competitors are Twitch (heavily focused on e-sports/gaming), Patreon (focused on creators), Represent.com (focused on merch (Read more...)

Mio, a social commerce startup focused on smaller cities and rural areas in Vietnam, raises $1M seed



Vietnam has one of the fastest-growing e-commerce markets in Southeast Asia, but many major platforms still focus on large cities. This means people in smaller cities or rural areas need to deal with longer wait times for deliveries. Social commerce company Mio is taking advantage of that gap by building a reseller network and logistics infrastructure that can offer next-day delivery to tier 2 and 3 cities.

The startup, which currently focuses on fresh groceries and plans to expand into more categories, announced today it has raised $1 million in seed funding. The round was co-led by Venturra Discovery and Golden Gate Ventures. Other participants included iSeed SEA, DoorDash executive Gokul Rajaram and Vidit Aatrey and Sanjeev Barnwal, co-founders of Indian social commerce unicorn Meesho.

Rajaram, Aatrey and Barnwal will become advisors to Mio co-founder and chief executive officer Trung Huynh, former investment associate at IDG Ventures Vietnam. Other founders include An Pham, who also co-founded Temasek-backed logistics startup SCommerce, Tu Le and Long Pham.

Founded in June 2020, Mio now claims hundreds of agents, or resellers. They are primarily women aged 25 to 35 years old who live in smaller cities or rural areas. Most join Mio because they want to supplement their household income, which is usually below $350, Huynh and Venturra investment associate Valerie Vu told TechCrunch in an email.

The social commerce model works for them because they are part of (Read more...)

Super, an Indonesian hyperlocal social commerce startup, raises $28M led by SoftBank Ventures Asia



Super's founding team on Mount Bromo in East Java

Super’s founding team on Mount Bromo in East Java

In Indonesia, daily necessities often cost more in smaller cities and rural areas. Super co-founder and chief executive officer Steven Wongsoredjo said the price difference can vary from about 10% to 20% in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities, to nearly 200% in eastern provinces. Super uses social commerce and a streamlined logistics chain to lower the cost of goods. The startup announced today it has raised an oversubscribed $28 million Series B led by SoftBank Ventures Asia.

Other participants included returning backers Amasia, Insignia Ventures Partners, Y-Combinator Continuity Fund and Bain Capital co-chairman Stephen Pagliuca, while partners from DST Global and TNB Aura invested for the first time in this round.

The funding brings Super’s total raised so far to more than $36 million, which the company says is the most funding an Indonesian social commerce startup has raised so far.

Super, which took part in Y Combinator’s winter 2018 batch, focuses mainly on cities or towns with a gross domestic product per capita of $5,000 USD or lower. It currently operates in 17 cities in East Java, and has a network of thousands of agents, or resellers, and hundreds of thousands of end buyers. The company will use its new funding to double its presence in the region and launch in other Indonesian provinces this year. It will also expand its product categories beyond fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) and develop its recently-launched white label brand, SuperEats.

Wongsoredjo told TechCrunch (Read more...)

Super, an Indonesian hyperlocal social commerce startup, raises $28M led by SoftBank Ventures Asia



Super's founding team on Mount Bromo in East Java

Super’s founding team on Mount Bromo in East Java

In Indonesia, daily necessities often cost more in smaller cities and rural areas. Super co-founder and chief executive officer Steven Wongsoredjo said the price difference can vary from about 10% to 20% in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities, to nearly 200% in eastern provinces. Super uses social commerce and a streamlined logistics chain to lower the cost of goods. The startup announced today it has raised an oversubscribed $28 million Series B led by SoftBank Ventures Asia.

Other participants included returning backers Amasia, Insignia Ventures Partners, Y-Combinator Continuity Fund and Bain Capital co-chairman Stephen Pagliuca, while partners from DST Global and TNB Aura invested for the first time in this round.

The funding brings Super’s total raised so far to more than $36 million, which the company says is the most funding an Indonesian social commerce startup has raised so far.

Super, which took part in Y Combinator’s winter 2018 batch, focuses mainly on cities or towns with a gross domestic product per capita of $5,000 USD or lower. It currently operates in 17 cities in East Java, and has a network of thousands of agents, or resellers, and hundreds of thousands of end buyers. The company will use its new funding to double its presence in the region and launch in other Indonesian provinces this year. It will also expand its product categories beyond fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) and develop its recently-launched white label brand, SuperEats.

Wongsoredjo told TechCrunch (Read more...)

“Link-in-bio” company Linktree raises $45M Series B for its social commerce features



If you browse Instagram, you are probably familiar with the term “link in bio.” Links aren’t allowed in post captions, and users are only allowed one URL in their bios, so many create a simple website with multiple links for their followers. Linktree, one of the most popular “link in bio” services with more than 12 million users, announced today it has raised $45 million in Series B funding. The round was co-led by Index Ventures and Coatue, with participation from returning investors AirTree Ventures and Insight Partners.

Coatue chairman Dan Rose will join Linktree’s board of directors. The Sydney, Australia-based startup’s last round was a $10.7 million Series A announced in October 2020. Linktree’s latest funding will be used on tools that make social commerce easier.

Linktree says about a third, or 4 million, of its users signed up within the last three months. This is in partly because people have been spending more time on social media and e-commerce shopping during the pandemic.

Founded in 2016, Linktree now competes with a roster of “link in bio” services, including Shorby, Linkin.bio and the recently launched Beacons.

“When we launched Linktree, we created an entirely new category. We were first to market and, with over 12 million users globally, still hold 88% of market share,” founder and chief executive officer Alex Zaccaria (Read more...)

Indonesian social commerce app KitaBeli gets $10M led by Go Ventures



Indonesian social commerce app KitaBeli's team, including

Indonesian social commerce app KitaBeli’s team, including founders Prateek Chaturvedi (seated, left front row and Ivana Medea Tjandra (center front row)

KitaBeli, an Indonesian social commerce app for group buying, announced today it has raised a $10 million Series A. The round was led by Gojek’s investment arm Go Ventures, with participation from returning investors AC Ventures and East Ventures. KitaBeli currently focuses on selling fresh produce and fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) in areas outside of Indonesia’s major cities, including to people who have never shopped online before.

Launched in March 2020 in Jarkata, KitaBeli then entered the cities of Solo and Malang. Its new funding will be used to expand KitaBeli’s operations in Java, growing its logistics network and developing its mobile app. KitaBeli claims it has grown 80% month over month since launch, with a cost-per-install rate of just 10 cents USD per customers.

Unlike other social e-commerce apps, including ChiliBeli and Woobiz in Indonesia, that build networks of resellers or agents who market items through their social media profiles and take a cut of sales, KitaBeli’s buyers place orders directly through its app, participating in group deals for lower prices. For farmers and suppliers, KitaBeli’s value comes from the ability to reach new customers in more areas of Indonesia. It says users spend an average of USD $70 per month on the app and plans to add new categories like beauty, fashion and accessories.

Co-founder and chief executive officer Prateek Chaturvedi said KitaBeli focuses on direct (Read more...)