Ralali Has Thailand and Microlending in Its Sights

17 September 2018

Ralali has secured US$7 million in series B funding to help it accelerate its regional expansion plans.

The Jakarta-based business-to-business (B2B) ecommerce portal netted the funds from Japan’s SBI Group and Digital Garage, alongside AddVentures – the venture capital arm of Thai industrial conglomerate Siam Cement Group (SCG).

Ralali started out in 2013 as an online marketplace targeting the B2B segment for maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) items, like power tools and construction equipment.

Since then, it has moved into adjacent areas, including building materials and office, food, and automotive supplies.

The idea is to provide a way for manufacturers to sell directly to shop owners, merchants, and construction firms at wholesale prices, allowing them to bypass the opaque pricing and corruption that has hindered Indonesia’s offline MRO market.

Another part of Ralali’s effort to improve supply chain visibility is the collection of customer data, which has helped the company and its manufacturer clients gain a better understanding of the Indonesian market for MRO and other workplace goods. The startup is now leaning on this data to develop a financing platform, which will provide working capital loans to buyers. A portion of the series B funding will help build this microlending business.

The freshly raised capital will also assist Ralali’s plans to expand beyond Indonesia. Top of the list is a rollout of MRO and building materials marketplaces in Thailand, targeted for Q1 2019.

Ralali will partner with new investor SCG closely on its expansion into the kingdom. The conglomerate is one of the region’s biggest providers of building materials and industrial supplies, and Ralali will be able to tap into its expansive business network as part of their collaboration.

The startup claims to have around 150,000 resellers, wholesalers, and retailers using its platform, with over 10,000 suppliers across 20 cities in Indonesia. It said its annual transaction numbers have grown fivefold year-on-year, with an average price per transaction of about US$2,000.

Ralali’s existing investors include Japan’s Beenos and CyberAgent Ventures, and Indonesia’s East Ventures.

Source: Tech in Asia