Zilingo highly likely to venture into offline retail in the next 12 months

Ankiti Bose. Photo: Ipsita Ray/DEALSTREETASIA

It is highly likely that Singapore-headquartered fashion marketplace Zilingo will venture into offline retail in the next 12 months, its co-founder and CEO Ankiti Bose said.

“Offline [retail] is a very critical touchpoint for consumers and we are thinking of creative ways to use that opportunity,” Bose said in a fireside chat at DEALSTREETASIA’s Indonesia PE-VC Summit 2019 on Thursday in Jakarta.

“I don’t think the future is fully online; offline will be all about great experiences. You can buy an iPhone online but you are going to Macy’s for the experience. Offline will evolve certainly,” she added.

JD.com-backed Pomelo and Singapore-based Love, Bonito have already expanded into offline retail with physical stores in Southeast Asia.

Zilingo is also likely to have an in-house financial services arm to offer services such as loans and payments to its merchants, according to Bose. “We have built out an entire layout to enable providing financial support to merchant across the supply chain.”

DEALSTREETASIA had earlier reported that Zilingo has already extended financial services to merchants through third parties – both loans and payment services — and wants to develop some of these services in-house in the long term.

Zilingo, an e-commerce site that sells directly to consumers in Indonesia, Thailand and Singapore, was said to be in talks with its existing investors to raise close to $80 million for its Series D, which could value the startup at over $500 million.

Last April, the fashion e-commerce company raised $54 million in a Series C funding round led by Belgium’s Sofina, German media giant Hubert Burda’s Burda Principal Investments and Sequoia Capital India. The funding came only five months after the company raised $17 million in a Series B round in September 2017.

It now serves over 20,000 merchants and retailers across B2B and B2C segments in Southeast Asia, with more than half of Zilingo’s business coming from its B2B operations, said Bose. In April 2018, the startup launched Zilingo Asia Mall (ZAM), an extension of its B2B business, in the US and Europe.

Founded by Bose and Dhruv Kapoor, the company said it has grown 10x in revenues, launched a TV campaign in Indonesia and expanded the merchant ecosystem to include services.

On a potential IPO down the road, Bose said, “It’s something that we have thought of and perhaps is for us in future. It’s a logical path for us.”

Zilingo has a tech team is in India while it has supply bases in Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, China, Bangladesh, Vietnam and Cambodia.

“I’m extremely optimistic about SEA even if there’s a slowdown. We have a long way to go in SEA,” Bose said.

Also Read: 

Fashion marketplace Zilingo bullish about fintech play, offline retail

Zilingo in talks with existing investors to raise $80m Series D funding

E-commerce marketplace Zilingo raises $54m led by Sofina, Sequoia, others 

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.