NEWS & RESOURCES

IPRICE GROUP RAISES $5M FROM JAPANESE CONGLOMERATES ITOCHU CORPORATION AND KDDI CORPORATION

Mar 22, 2022

iPrice Group, Southeast Asia's leading price comparison platform helping online shoppers save money, announced that it has raised $5 million of additional funding.  The capital was raised from Japan-based firms Itochu Corporation and the KDDI Open Innovation Fund III (operated by Global Brain Corporation).

The additional funding will bolster iPrice's role in finding shoppers the best deals as Southeast Asia's e-commerce market becomes increasingly difficult to navigate.  

To read the full article, click here.

EX-GRAB PHILIPPINES PRESIDENT RAISES US$10.7M FROM REGIONAL AND GLOBAL INVESTORS TO EXPAND SARISUKI’S COVERAGE AND PRODUCT PORTFOLIO

Mar 3, 2022

SariSuki, the Philippines’ rapidly growing start up in the e-commerce grocery sector, is strengthening its leading position in the social commerce segment by breaking down the barriers to e-commerce adoption.

SariSuki is backed by significant fundraising that counts Openspace, Susquehanna International Group (SIG), Global Founders Capital (GFC), Saison Capital, JG Digital Equity Ventures, and Foxmont Capital Partners among those who participated. The latest US$7.1 million round took total funding for the company to US$10.7 million in 2021. With the new funds, SariSuki aims to deepen the breadth and depth of its operations to serve more Filipino consumers.

SariSuki was founded by an impressive team emerging from within Southeast Asia’s scale-up tech giants led by Brian Cu, co-founder of Zalora Philippines and Grab Philippines, where he was country head for 7 years.

Introduced in May 2021, SariSuki grew 36 times in terms of gross merchandise value (GMV) in the past 9 months. The business has now served more than 60,000 consumers through its growing number of community leaders called KaSari. SariSuki operations extend across Greater Metro Manila Area, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and some parts of both Rizal and Pampanga.

SariSuki adopts a Community Group Buy model. Members of communities who set up their business as a Community Leader or KaSari, are able to earn a healthy profit from directly selling produce and goods whilst performing the last mile fulfillment. This model has enabled SariSuki to offer supermarket quality products at wet market prices. SariSuki acts as a consolidator of grocery items for their KaSari who in turn own virtual “sari-sari stores” that sell the goods to consumers.

While the Philippines’ e-commerce potential market size is estimated to reach $15 billion by 2025 (Statista), the adoption of e-commerce into grocery and retail industry remains at less than 3-percent of businesses being online. With the pandemic further exposing these issues, SariSuki started in 2021 with a mission to empower the community by buying fresh produce in bulk from local farmers and offering them to the local community at a discounted price.

Those interested to earn and be a KaSari Community Leader may sign up by downloading the SariSuki application from the App Store and Google Play.

“We are a set of founders that grew up in the Philippines and have an understanding of our market. This combined with our background in scaling up large tech companies in the region

made us realize we can do more by increasing efficiencies in our supply chain infrastructure. SariSuki offers Filipinos value grocery products at extremely affordable prices that meet their daily needs. We are also empowering community leaders to be strong microentrepreneurs that will help propel the country’s economic growth from the grassroots level ” said Cu.

“SariSuki’s increasing sector dominance has resulted from addressing key pain points and barriers to e-commerce adoption with a model that builds confidence amongst, and value for, consumers. We recognised that the trust that those communities are putting in their Community Leader, who consistently delivers high-quality local produce, will help to rapidly accelerate vital e-commerce adoption” said Hian Goh, co-founder of Openspace.

“We were always deeply impressed with the team at SariSuki, and believe the depth of talent they now have at all levels of the business will be key as they continue to grow, expand and consolidate their early leadership position,” said Gervin Yang, Executive Director at Openspace.

“We are honored to back a stellar team bringing convenience and a world-class customer experience to groceries shopping in the Philippines. In our view, the high density, growing disposable income, maturing digital connectivity and sheer population size in key urban areas in the Philippines, finally set the stage for the next cohort of large consumer-facing tech businesses in the country.” concluded Tito Costa, Partner at Global Founders Capital.

Foxmont Capital Partners Director of Portfolio Management Nico Sibal added, “We strongly believe in the digitalization of the Philippines, and especially how Sarisuki provides a wide-ranging platform that allows many communities new and meaningful access to that future. They have found a uniquely Filipino way to empower the local community at scale, both as buyers and sellers. Sarisuki has a dynamic, experienced set of founders and a leading organization that can deliver on the promise of the next generation of e-commerce in the country.”

SAAS STARTUP DARWINBOX TURNS UNICORN AFTER RAISING USD72MN

Jan 26, 2022

The latest round of funding was led by Technology Crossover Ventures (TCV) along with participation from existing investors Salesforce Ventures, Sequoia, Lightspeed, SCB 10X, JG Digital Equity Ventures (JGDEV), Endiya Partners and 3One4Capital.

Founded in late 2015, Darwinbox’s cloud based human capital management platform caters to human resources needs across the entire employee lifecycle. Its new product is powering digital HR for more than 1.5 million employees from 650 enterprises across the globe.

The new funding will be used for the company’s global expansion plan by allowing it to accelerate its platform innovation, strengthen its product, engineering and customer success teams along with scaling their go-to-market presence in multiple geographies. The company is set to triple its team within a year aiming to add more than 100 employees in southeast Asia across its Manila, Singapore and Jakarta offices.

To read the full article, click here.

KKR LEADS SERIES C ROUND IN PHILIPPINE B2B PLATFORM GROWSARI WITH US$45 MILLION INVESTMENT

Jan 26, 2022

KKR’s investment in GrowSari will support the Company’s expansion into more regions across the Philippines and strengthen its financial services capabilities.  

Founded in 2016, GrowSari is a leading tech-enabled B2B platform that helps the Philippines’ small physical retail stores, including neighborhood retail shops (sari-sari stores), roadside and market shops (carinderia), and pharmacies, enhance their service levels and access a wider range of products and value-adding services. This allows the stores to provide local communities with more comprehensive offerings, including digital services.

Today, GrowSari is present in 220 municipalities across the regions of Luzon and offers over a hundred types of different services including making bill payments, telco reloads, and wallet top-ups, as well as procurement services for common retail goods and pharmaceutical medicines.

To read the full article, click here.

ECOMMERCE ENABLER ETAILY BANKS $4.3M IN SEED EXTENSION

Jan 26, 2022

Philippine-based ecommerce enabler Etaily has added US$4.3 million in seed funding in an extension round led by JG Digital Equity Ventures, the investment arm of local conglomerate Gokongwei Group.

Etaily, which was founded by CEO Alex Friedhoff in 2020, addresses the ecommerce needs of brands by providing content production, channel creation, and warehousing and fulfillment services. Some of its clients include Landmark, Toshiba, and Terranova.

The fresh funds will go toward its regional expansion efforts and the development of solutions such as offline-to-online cloud software for sales integration.

To read the full article, click here.

EUROMONITOR CITES MANILA-BASED E-COMMERCE ENABLER ETAILY AS GLOBAL MEGATREND FIRM

December 31, 2021

Euromonitor’s recent Megatrends Report has recognized Manila-based ecommerce enabler Etaily as among the Philippine companies that are shaping the top eight global Megatrends that indicate major shifts in consumer values and behavior.

The 2021 edition of the Euromonitor Megatrends Report cited in Etaily as a solutions provider that is uniquely positioned to help Filipino retailers achieve their full digital potential even – or especially – during the pandemic. 

“Etaily’s expansion is expected to drive the growth and development of e-Commerce among local businesses, giving them the chance to create an omnichannel experience and expand their customer base in the face of growing competition from international e-commerce giants,” read the report.

To read the full story, click here.

DIGITAL BANK TYMEBANK REACHES 4 MILLION CUSTOMER MILESTONE WITHIN 32 MONTHS

November 5, 2021

Tyme users reached the 4 million milestone within about 32 months.  “We’ve expanded our offering and enhanced product functionality to ensure we can give customers everything they need in a single banking account, while empowering them to pay nothing – or next to nothing – on banking fees, depending on their banking behaviour," TymeBank chief executive Tauriq Keraan said. 

TymeBank’s partnership model with two retailers, Pick n Pay and Boxer, has been an integral part of its strategy to acquire customers and drive usage and had significantly contributed to the bank’s success since its February 2019 launch.

To read the full story, visit https://www.iol.co.za/business-report/companies/digital-bank-tymebank-reaches-4-million-customer-milestone-within-32-months-b3073ede-5724-476d-bed9-0acbdea61501

DARWINBOX BECOMES THE YOUNGEST AND ONLY ASIAN PLAYER TO FEATURE ON GARTNER'S MAGIC QUADRANT FOR CLOUD HCM SUITES 2021

October 26, 2021

Darwinbox, a JGDEV Investee, is the youngest entrant to Gartner’s MQ since its inception in 2016 and is the only Asian origin player that sits on the Quadrant. Darwinbox assumes it position alongside major players such as like SAP, Oracle, and Workday.  

Darwinbox has more than 600 global enterprise customers such as JG Summit Group, Zalora, Zilingo and Tokopedia. Darwinbox retains its position as the best rated solution by customers in Gartner's Peer Insights with an average platform rating of 4.8.  To read the full article, please visit https://finance.yahoo.com/news/darwinbox-becomes-youngest-only-asian-054900575.html.

SEARCH FOR INCLUSIVE FINTECH 50

July 15, 2021

Inclusive Fintech 50 is looking for early-stage companies driving financial inclusion and resilience for populations hit hard by the pandemic.  The application period officially closes on July 23.  Apply today by visiting https://www.inclusivefintech50.com/.

JGDEV is part of the IF50 Investors’ Network, a global network of investors that provides members with visibility into promising early-stage inclusive fintechs.

GROWSARI RAISES $30-M FROM TENCENT, IFC, GOKONGWEI GROUP

July 7, 2021

GrowSari, a Philippine B2B E-commerce player, has raised US$30 million in funding to date from global marquee investors including China’s Tencent, International Finance Corporation, and the Gokongwei Group.

Founded in 2016, GrowSari is a tech-enabled B2B platform that outfits Philippine sari-sari store owners with inventory, infrastructure, and tools to manage and grow their business while generating crucial data and market insights for manufacturers and distributors.

GrowSari has grown from a base of 1,000 sari-sari stores in three cities in 2018 to more than 50,000 stores in over 100 municipalities across Luzon as of 2020.  To read the full article, please visit https://mb.com.ph/2021/07/07/growsari-raises-30-m-from-marquee-investors-tencent-ifc-gokongwei-group/

GROWSARI, A B2B PLATFORM FOR SMALL STORES IN THE PHILIPPINES

June 17, 2021

According to GrowSari, there are more than 1.1 million sari-sari stores in the Philippines, and they account for 60% of fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) sold in the country, making them a valuable distribution channel for wholesalers. In addition to its supplier marketplace, GrowSari says it is able to give sari-sari store operators better pricing for products from about a thousand FMCG brands, including Unilever, P&G and Nestle, which it claims can help stores double their earnings. Other services in the app include online telecom and utility bill payments, remittance and microfinancing for working capital loans.

To read the full article and find out more about Growsari's Series B round, please visit https://techcrunch.com/2021/06/21/growsari-a-b2b-platform-for-small-stores-in-the-philippines-adds-investors-like-temaseks-pavilion-capital-and-tencent/.

JG SUMMIT, JGDEV INVEST IN TYME

February 26, 2021

JG Summit Holdings and its corporate VC arm, JG Digital Equity Ventures (JGDEV), are taking part in the $110 million investment round of Tyme, together with private equity fund, Apis Growth Fund II, and South African investment holding company, African Rainbow Capital (ARC).  Tyme, whose international management arm, TymeGlobal, is headquartered in Singapore, is considered as one of the world’s leading digital banking network for emerging markets.


With the move, JG Summit, through JGDEV, reinforces its foray into global Innovations and Fintech as part of its vision of becoming one of the biggest digital conglomerates in the country and in the ASEAN. With Tyme in its portfolio of investments, JGDEV brings to the JG Summit ecosystem a deeper understanding of the success of digital banking in developing economies such as South Africa, with the aim of replicating it in a similar setting such as the Philippines. 

Read the full article here.

Photo credit:  Tyme Global

WHAT DO INVESTORS LOOK FOR WHEN INVESTING IN STARTUPS?

October 22, 2020

EsquireMag.ph talks to JGDEV CEO, Jojo Malolos, to find out. 

Among other things, business should not just be a matter of getting what you need from the client and moving on. The big picture should be to impact people beyond your primary customers and grow your network.

“The only way you can prove that you're really transforming digitally is if you have an economic impact on the landscapes by which you play,” said Malolos. “We harness our capability to achieve our objectives to have an impact on every Filipinos life. We are able to have an impact on our other shareholders, [which] creates an impetus for our employees to benefit from this type of system. We want to make sure that all of our customers also benefit from this by not only giving them what they asked for, but by giving them their daily needs or being able to create opportunities for them to put up their own businesses.”  Read the full article in EsquireMag.ph.

JGDEV'S CEO, JOJO MALOLOS, PARTICIPATES IN ADB'S 1ST SOUTHEAST ASIA DEVELOPMENT SYMPOSIUM

October 19, 2020

ADB is organizing SEADS (Southeast Asia Development Symposium), the first of what will be an annual development policy symposium in Southeast Asia. The main goal of the symposium is "to help crystallize thinking on relevant and critical issues, and support countries in successfully making the transition to becoming high-income, knowledge-based, and, most importantly, sustainable economies," according to ADB's website. JGDEV CEO, Jojo Malolos, participates in a panel discussion entitled “The Digital Economy Revolution” Session, which takes place on 21 October from 1:30pm-3:00pm (Manila Time). Other panelists include Magnus Ekbom, Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer, Lazada Group and Deanna Morris, Programme Management Officer, United Nations ESCAP. The session will be moderated by Kelly Hattel, Senior Financial Sector Specialist, ADB. To find out on how to register to SEADS, please visit https://www.adb.org/news/events/southeast-asia-development-symposium-seads-2020

HOW LARGE COMPANIES EMBRACE INNOVATION

October 8, 2020

During PCCI's 46th Philippine Business Conference & Expo, JGDEV and DAVI CEO Jojo Malolos, participated in the panel discussion on "How Large Companies Embrace Innovation". Together with other corporate VCs namely, ACTive Fund and f(dev), the panel moderated by Jojo Flores looked into the vital role large companies play in creating the ecosystem for innovation to flourish. During the session, Malolos shared how innovation is prioritized within the Gokongwei Group and cited some examples on how the various units were able to adapt given the sudden behavior shifts during the pandemic.

JGDEV PARTICIPATES IN THE SINGAPORE X ASIA INNOVATION PARTNERSHIP FORUM 2020

September 29, 2020

The event is organized by KrASIA and Singapore's Economic Development Board (EDB) and hopes to facilitate open and robust discussions around the technology and innovation ecosystems in Southeast Asia.  Sheinal Bhuralal, JGDEV Senior Portfolio Director, together with  Xu Wei, Chief Risk Officer of VZoom Creditech, talked about Transforming Financial Industry with Credit Technologies and Risk Management. Several esteemed speakers across China and Southeast Asia such as Sea Group, Grab Financial, Monetary Authority of Singapore and more shared their thoughts on fintech. Watch the recorded session here. Catch Sheinal's session at 2:09:56 of the recording.

JGDEV INVESTS IN IPRICE GROUP

September 18, 2020

JGDEV's latest investment is ecommerce aggregator iPrice Group. Currently operating in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam, and Hong Kong, iPrice has billions of product listings on its platform. “iPrice has a unique approach. It doesn’t aim to compete with other players, but instead, it enables these players to have more channels. As a result, it connects them to more consumers. iPrice enables consumer transactions to be deeper and wider through its comprehensive understanding of the digital economy,” JGDEV President and CEO Jojo Malolos is quoted from Deal Street Asia's article.  Read the full article in this link.

JGDEV IS PART OF THE IF50 INVESTORS CIRCLE

September 14, 2020

IF50 or Inclusive Fintech 50 elevates promising early-stage fintechs that drive financial inclusion and resilience around the globe. It leverages a competitive process led by an independent judging panel of experts to identify 50 early-stage fintechs driving financial inclusion and resilience. Special focus on fintechs in advanced or emerging markets that offer a solution among credit, insurance, payments & remittances, savings & personal financial management, or infrastructure addressing special challenges of underserved customer segments. IF50 helps these startups become more visible to investors and partners who can help them reach more of the 3 billion financially-underserved population. For more information about the IF50 program, visit this link.

JOJO MALOLOS LEADS JG SUMMIT’S CHARGE INTO THE DIGITAL REALM

August 21, 2020

Get to know Elmer "Jojo" Malolos, the president and CEO of JGDEV, the Gokongwei Group's corporate venture investment arm focusing on Southeast Asia, and also the president and CEO of Data Analytics Ventures, Inc., the conglomerate's data analytics company which also aims to incubate and launch new and relevant digital businesses that will enhance the lives of the Filipino consumer.  Read the full article in this link.