PH startup Tambio takes a chance on expansion

From a popular game of chance to a typical fundraiser tool for community organisations (like the church groups and service clubs) and now a modern marketing and promotion tool in larger retail organisations – the humble raffle has many avatars.

Filipino tech startup Tambio provides solution for the digital raffle, both from the oragniser as well as participant’s perspective. For example, through Tambio app, a consumer is able to see all the available raffles, join raffles, know the winners as well as keep track of the ones they have joined.

In an interaction with DEALSTREETASIA Tambio co-founders Kenneth Morgan Nieto (advertising professional) and May Montero  (former senior quality analyst at Reed Elsevier Philippines) spoke about the importance of persistence, product traction and keeping an open mind. Excerpts from the interaction

What does your company do and how did the idea came to life?

Tambio is a raffle solution for both companies and customers. We make raffle joining easier by removing the hassle of filling up raffle tickets, but still experience the fun of dropping them inside a tambiolo (raffle drum).

The idea came to life when we were given several dozens of raffle tickets to fill up after a big purchase. It’s like a punishment to write your details over and over again just to be able to join the raffle. We wondered if any one had developed a solution for this problem. That’s when we thought of developing Tambio.

How has your startup  journey been so far?

When we submitted Tambio to IdeaSpace Foundation Inc, it was just an idea. We were considered one of the weakest among the top 20 teams as neither of us is  an expert in raffles, nor in developing the algorithm that we wanted for Tambio.

We did quite a bit of research. I am not sure if we can call ourselves raffle expert now, but we are pretty comfortable with the topic. We tried to hire programmers for our mobile app, but it didn’t work. So we decided to study programming, so that our product development is not dependent on anyone else.

All this happened in the span of two to three months during the incubation stage. By the time that the MVP Group of company executives are going to select the top 10 startups of Ideaspace, we were fully equipped with knowledge and tools for implementing Tambio. 

How many investors does your company have? How do you plan to use the invested funds?

We have just started generating revenue with our recent deployments for event raffles, and we are now working on meeting the demands of commercial raffle draws. We currently have two investors, the Ideaspace Foundation Inc and the Ads Republic Corporation. We are using the funds in Tambio’s research and development and purchase of necessary equipments for our deployments.

How much do you spend on research and development? What are the future plans? 

As we are a startup, we are really heavy on research and development. Around  45 per cent of our Ideaspace investment is allotted to it. We are working to making our product ready for the ASEAN integration, and trying to find ways to roll it out in other countries.

How do you plan to attract additional investments? 

For a startup like us, the best way to attract additional investments is to show a clear traction. We are working in closing deals with commercial raffles, with big deployments to support our claim that there is a need for Tambio, and that there are clients who are willing to pay for it..

What is an ideal mindset for a startup founder? 

Open-mindedness is very important. In the startup world, you will hear a lot of feedback, good and bad; keep an open mind. Whatever feedback you receive, be thankful of it as these will help you in making your product fit for the market you are trying to address. Having an open mind will help you accept failures that are sure to come. Pivot or perish as they say.