Thailand’s aCommerce raises over $10m from KKR, others

aCommerce, a Bangkok-based startup that helps brands such as Samsung, L’Oreal and Unilever sell their products online across Southeast Asia, has raised more than $10 million from existing investors including KKR & Co.

KKR’s Emerald Media, investment house Blue Sky, DKSH Holding AG and an arm of Indonesian conglomerate Sinar Mas also took part in the company’s latest funding round, intended to drive the startup’s expansion and help it reach profitability by early 2020. That in turn paves the way for an initial public offering in two to three years, Chief Executive Officer Paul Srivorakul said. The six-year-old firm plans to raise another $5 million by the end of this year as part of an extended Series B or early-stage funding round, he added.

“We have the ambitions for an IPO so it’s really important that we grow a healthy, valuable business,” Srivorakul said in an interview.

aCommerce is trying to set itself apart from other online retail startups that focus on growth over the bottom line. Rather than go head-to-head against Chinese giants from Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. to Tencent Holdings Ltd. and JD.com Inc., which have made inroads into the region in recent years, the Thai outfit concentrates on supporting brands keen on expanding their own online sales.

aCommerce makes money by providing services from distribution and marketing to warehousing and delivery. It operates in Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines. In 2018, revenue grew 73% to more than $100 million, and its core market of Thailand turned profitable, according to the CEO.

It’s early days but the company may choose to list in Bangkok, Singapore or Australia to stay close to the Southeast Asian market, he said.

Bloomberg 

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.