Babydash aims to raise US$453K Series A
By Lum Ka Kay January 11, 2016
- Received RM500K seed funding from undisclosed investors in Nov 2015
- Focus on dominating Malaysian market first, but eyeing regional market
BABY products e-commerce startup Babydash is searching for strategic partners for a targeted RM2-million (approximately US$453,000 at current rates) Series A round, to help expand its product range and enhance its marketing strategies.
The Malaysian startup had secured RM500,000 (US$115,000) seed funding from undisclosed investors in November 2015 that was used to grow its team, the company told Digital News Asia (DNA).
Self-funded since it launched in 2011, Babydash founders Lavinie Thiruchelvam and Tay Shan Li said that joining Cradle Fund Sdn Bhd’s Coach and Grow Programme (CGP) had exposed them to many ideas, and one of them was the need to take in external funds.
CGP is an entrepreneurship and mentorship programme run by Proficeo Consultants, while Cradle Fund is a non-profit company under Malaysia’s Ministry of Finance.
“We joined CGP and were exposed to many mentors, and we learnt that we have to take in external funding in order to scale,” said Lavinie.
“If we don’t scale, someone else is going to scale and then proceed to take over our portion of the pie,” she added.
So the duo started talking to a variety of angel investors and venture capitalists (VCs).
“But it’s down to finding a partner actually. Our investor has to be a business partner who believes in what we do and wants the same thing for the business as we do,” Tay said.
She said the two founders are very happy with Babydash’s achievement in 2015, in terms of growth and revenue. The startup is looking to double its revenue in its next financial year, although she did not give actual figures.
“Looking at our current rate, by the time we hit our financial year in May 2016, we should have increased revenue by 40% compared with the previous financial year.
“We’re growing comfortably, but we’re looking to double our revenue in the next financial year,” she added.
Malaysian market first
Tay said the team is currently working on revamping the website, which hopefully would be completed later this month.
Meanwhile, Lavinie said there was always a plan to go beyond Malaysia but that Babydash should focus on dominating the Malaysian market first.
“Right now, we want to focus on dominating Malaysia before moving on to a regional expansion. We want people (Malaysians) to think of Babydash whenever they need to buy baby products online.
“And once we’ve achieved that, it would be easier for us to move on to other markets in the region,” she said.
The challenge right now for Babydash is to scale, and to do it efficiently.
“Scaling is important but we have to make sure our customer service is still as good and the team is able to grow as we scale,” said Lavinie.
“Because, as you grow, things are not going to work the same anymore,” she added.
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