Nuren expands to Thailand through Risawedding.com
By Anushia Kandasivam February 14, 2017
- Taking advantage of a huge market
- Targeting consumers in Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and beyond
MALAYSIA-based wedding and baby e-commerce platform Nuren Group on Feb 14 announced the launch of Risawedding.com, a comprehensive wedding platform in Thailand.
The expansion into Thailand is part of Nuren’s long-term plan of expansion further into Southeast Asia. “Thailand is one of the largest markets in the region and a destination wedding location, so it makes a lot of sense for us to have a presence there,” co-founder and CEO Petrina Goh (pic, right) told Digital News Asia via email.
Thailand’s large population of female consumers with increasing spending power was a main draw for Nuren, so it makes sense for the company to take advantage of a replenishing audience of 300,000 marriages and 800,000 births a year, she added.
Nuren is already a wedding and baby e-commerce platform market leader in Malaysia through wedding.com.my and motherhood.com.my, and it also owns and operates nuren.sg in Singapore.
Risawedding.com provides brides- and grooms-to-be a convenient one-stop platform where they can find a variety of wedding services, as well as inspiration and ideas, to help them plan their weddings. The platform allows users to search for essentials such as venues, bridal fashion, invitation cards and gifts and decorations, as well as services such as wedding planning, photography and videography, makeup and manicure, traditional ceremonies, and entertainment.
There are now more than 200 themed wedding packages from more than 50 Bangkok-based vendors on the website. The packages range from simple budget weddings to more expensive and extravagant ones. Nuren plans to grow these offerings to at least 1000 packages from 200 vendors by the end of the year.
According to Goh, getting vendors on board and introducing the platform into Thailand was not difficult, as the model has already proven successful in Malaysia and Singapore. Risawedding benefitted from a partnership with Thai celebrity bridal house and planner Siriwaraporn, who introduced the platform to her circle of reputable vendors and partners.
On their part, vendors on the platform benefit from extensive marketing exposure and Risawedding’s planner concierge services, which guides couples through planning and allows them to compare packages offered by vendors.
“We believe the key success is being able to work with quality and reliable vendors, and helping them to reach out to couples in a more effective way. This is reciprocal to helping couples engage the right vendors hassle free and in a transparent manner,” said Goh.
Though the current focus is on wedding services in Bangkok, Nuren has plans to expand to Chiang Mai, Pattaya and Phuket within the next six months. The ultimate plan is to promote Phuket and Chiang Mai as ideal wedding destinations.
Further, while the platform now targets Thai couples planning their weddings in Thailand, Nuren will expand Risawedding’s offerings to cover destination weddings in Thailand for couples from outside the country, especially couples from Malaysia and Singapore. However, Nuren still wants to hold on to its Thai users – the website will be available in the Thai language in two months.
Goh added that there plans to link Risawedding with Nuren’s Malaysian platform wedding.com.my to take advantage of the large destination wedding and overseas photo shoot markets.
Nuren is running this expansion into Thailand on the funding it obtained last year. In March, Nuren raised US$2 million in its Series A funding round, led by Gobi Partners, and in June raised a little more than its targeted RM200,000 (approximately US$44,959 at current rates) in a crowdfunding round on equity crowdfunding platform Crowdo. Goh revealed that to strengthen its position in Thailand, Nuren is looking to start another funding raising round at the end of the first quarter of this year.
Nuren’s aim for Risawedding this year is to close 300 weddings and generate at least 15 to 20 sales for each of its vendors. Each sale will range between THB25,000 and THB500,000 (approximately US$712 and US$14,238).
Nuren’s growth has been steady; in an interview with DNA last year, Goh said that the company had been growing at a double-digit rate in terms of revenue and vendor base since its launch in September 2013. Goh has now told DNA that Nuren is still growing at this rate.
“Our main KPI is currently driven by aggressive increase in orders on our parenting platform and increasing numbers of leads and sales referred to our vendors on our two wedding platforms,” she said, adding that Nruen will be launching another parenting platform – mamahood.com.sg – in Singapore on Feb 22.
In the same interview last year, Goh also said that Nuren’s target revenue for this year will be triple that of last year; the 2016 target was US$1 million, which was achieved. Goh has confirmed that the 2017 target is still US$3 million and Nuren is on track to achieve it.
On the horizon for Nuren this year are plans for closer engagement with its community by launching a rewards platform to increase consumer lifetime value. According to Goh, another big plan is to expand Nuren’s physical store front to provide offline to online services for customers.
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