East Ventures is contributing a $50,000 ticket while Raksul will invest the balance. Following this, Raksul gains a 20 per cent equity interest in Prinzio.
This reflects a trend of venture-backed startups investing in other mature startups allowing them to consolidate, expand into new markets and add to the top line. This, in turn, makes them more attractive to potential investors.
Operating in the e-commerce and printing space, the Tokyo-based firm has raised $51.6 million to date across five rounds of investment. Their latest rounds of equity financing was a Series C investment worth $33.7 million in February 2015.
Founded by CEO Yasukane Matsumoto in 2009, Tech in Asia reported that Yasukane’s acquisitive growth strategy is to invest in and potentially acquire local printing startups in Asian markets. Yasukane added that Raksul would be revenue generating by January or February 2016, with its most popular item being flyers, which accounted for more than 60 per cent of revenues.
In an interaction with Tech in Asia, Matsumoto explained: “Right now, there’s no e-commerce printing option in Indonesia, but consumers want it. Existing players are the physical shops like Kinkos. You have to go pick up your order, and the traffic is so bad in a city like Jakarta. This ‘shop style’ is how people in the US and Japan did their printing in the 80s and 90s.”
The Indonesian target firm, Prinzio, is aiming to connect Indonesian users with local brick-and-mortar printing businesses, enabling them to select their vendor based on criteria like price and location, make an order online and receive the shipment to the destination address. Yasukana also disclosed that he was in the process of seeking aid from Japanese venture capitalists active in Southeast Asia.
Raksul maintains more than 100 printing partners in Japan, covering all 47 perfectures of Japan. Meanwhile, Prinzio has established partnership with six printers in Jakarta. According to founder and CEO Riky Tenggara – who maintains an extensive professional portfolio in the e-commerce space – Prinzio will deploy the funds to finance further talent acquisition, operations and marketing.
In a statement to Tech in Asia, Matsumoto explained that Raksul would be targeting investments in one or two more firms by the end of 2016 in the region, with plans to enter the Philippines and Singapore. He also intends to expand Raksul’s footprint in the highly competitive Indian market.