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Indonesian social commerce platform KitaBeli raises US$20M, unveils bold expansion plan

Published on July 18, 2022

social-commerce-kitabeli

KitaBeli, the largest fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) social commerce platform for consumers in Indonesia’s second-and third-tier cities, today announced that it closed a US$20 million funding round led by Glade Brook Capital Partners (Glade Brook), a leading global growth equity investment firm. KitaBeli’s existing investors, AC Ventures and GoVentures joined the round, along with new investor InnoVen Capital.

KitaBeli allows users and partners (Mitras) to get discounts and earn money by leveraging their social networks. The app allows consumers to enjoy discounted prices through a gamified and social shopping experience. Unlike some other shopping apps, KitaBeli runs a direct-to-consumer social commerce business model that offers buyers the staples of daily life.

KitaBeli has grown more than 10x in six months and is now Indonesia’s largest direct-to-consumer social commerce platform. The new funding will enable KitaBeli to further expand into second- and third-tier cities across the archipelago, while also rolling out new product categories such as beauty, personal care, mother and baby products, frozen food, and more.

A timely expansion for social commerce

KitaBeli’s expansion comes as Indonesia’s second- and third-tier cities now represent a more than US$100 billion market, with more than 200 million consumers contributing more than 50% of the nation’s GDP. As a result, KitaBeli’s unique platform focuses on reaching consumers in cities outside of Indonesia’s main business hub of Jakarta, and addresses many of the unique problems they traditionally face:

  • First, these consumers are often subject to long delivery times for online shopping orders. KitaBeli has addressed by opening warehouses in every city it operates in, allowing it to execute same-day and next-day deliveries right to the customer’s doorstep.
  • Further, city-dwellers outside the nation’s capital also routinely find themselves coping with higher prices due to broken supply chains. This often results in the end-customer paying 10% to 50% more than their Jakarta-based peers do. By sourcing products directly from brands and principals, KitaBeli passes major savings on to consumers.
  • Finally, consumers in second- and third-tier cities often have trust issues with e-commerce when they don’t know the person who’s promoting or selling a product. To break down trust barriers, KitaBeli employs a different strategy than its competitors, focusing on the consumer’s offline networks and incentivizing them to invite friends and family to use the platform.

“By being extremely consumer-focused, we have been able to achieve product-market fit and scale very fast in a historically untapped market,” explained Prateek Chaturvedi, co-founder and CEO of KitaBeli. “By leveraging the offline social networks of our local community leaders (Mitras), we have been able to reach thousands of new users who are buying online for the first time in their lives. This has helped us build massive loyalty with our customers and enabled us to deliver better long-term margins than other players.”

He continued, “Glade Brook is one of the most seasoned growth-stage investors we have met, and their experience in e-commerce and social commerce across developing economies globally is unparalleled. The deep experience and insight Linda Guo, Paul Hudson, and their entire team bring to this space convinced us that they were the right partners on our journey.”

Prateek added, “We have also been very lucky to have the continued support of GoVentures and AC Ventures, whose regional expertise has allowed us to accelerate our growth. We are very thankful for their support and look forward to reaching greater heights with them.”

“We are excited to partner with KitaBeli to bring better, more affordable e-commerce access to second-tier communities in Indonesia. We believe the next wave of e-commerce growth in Indonesia will be driven by consumer demand outside major cities like Jakarta,” said Linda Guo, Partner at Glade Brook Capital Partners. “As a result, the winners will be new and innovative companies like KitaBeli, which bring deep connections to local community leaders and are built to serve the emerging middle-class consumer.”

Founder and Managing Partner of AC Ventures Adrian Li added, “Our commitment to KitaBeli further substantiates our thesis that Indonesia’s next frontier of e-commerce users will come from second and third-tier cities in Indonesia. KitaBeli has focused on creating a solution that is well-suited for rural consumers. It utilizes social hooks and gamification to push engagement and employs a hyper-local community delivery model. KitaBeli’s product-led approach and operational excellence has demonstrated powerful customer engagement, strong top-line growth, and promising take rate expansion. We are enthusiastic about KitaBeli’s future and excited to be part of the journey from the beginning.”

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