Evermos is an Indonesian social commerce startup with two goals: to enable people to earn extra income by opening online stores without spending capital, and to help small brands become well-known brands. The company, which focuses on halal products and other items for Muslim clients, today announced that it has raised a $ 30 million Series B round, led by UOB Venture Management’s Asia Impact Investment Fund II. Other attendees included IFC, MDI Ventures, Telkomsel Mitra Innovation (TMI) and Future Shape, as well as returning investors Jungle Ventures and Shunwei Capital.
The funding will be used to hire, improve the recommendation engine of Evermos and other AI-based technologies, and penetrate new regions in Indonesia. The company says it currently has 100,000 active resellers in more than 500 Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities, mostly in Java. Its goal is to reach over one million resellers across Indonesia over the next five years.
On the supply side, Evermos works with more than 500 brands, mostly small Indonesian companies, and sells halal fashion, health and beauty products, as well as food and drink. The company says its total trading volume has grown more than 60-fold in the past two years.
Evermos was founded in November 2018 by Ghufron Mustaqim, Iqbal Muslimin, Ilham Taufiq and Arip Tirta. Mustaqim told TechCrunch that the team was motivated by their dissatisfaction with many retail practices in Indonesia. For example, this includes multiple layers of distribution that drive up prices and the proliferation of counterfeit products online, making many people reluctant to buy from e-commerce marketplaces.
“We are trying to solve these problems by innovating with the social commerce model, so that resellers can help customers choose the right products more efficiently,” said Mustaqim.
Almost 90% of Indonesians are Muslims, so “when you say that we are targeting the Muslim market, we are targeting almost all of Indonesia,” he added. “We carefully keep the products integrated into our platform, and one of the most important aspects is whether they are relevant to the Muslim market. For example, it must be halal, if it is fashion, it must be modest fashion.
Evermos does not require resellers to purchase inventory. Instead, resellers market selected items from Evermos’ catalog to their social circles, including family, friends, and neighbors, through WhatsApp, Facebook, and other apps. Resellers have an online landing page created on the Evermos app and can send product links to customers, but Mustaqim says most sales are through chat.
Evermos manages inventory, logistics and customer support. Like many other social commerce startups in Indonesia, including Super, KitaBeli, and ChiliBeli, Evermos focuses on small towns, where e-commerce penetration is lower due to factors such as higher shipping costs. . To reduce shipping costs, Evermos resellers often group their customers’ orders into batches. Products are typically shipped to them from the brands own warehouses via third-party logistics providers, but Evermos is currently building inventory scans and a warehouse network to store products closer to resellers.
Mustaqim says brands typically pay a 30% commission on products sold through Evermos, and the company shares most of that with resellers. The best Evermos resellers make around $ 200 per month, which is about the minimum monthly wage in most Indonesian provinces.
Since most Evermos resellers are selling online for the first time, it offers in-app training modules (as well as occasional offline training events). This includes advice on keeping inventory, how to use Evermos’ platform to place orders and use its promotional programs and product writing.
So far, Evermos has focused primarily on Java, but plans to expand to other parts of Indonesia. Its strategies to reach one million resellers in five years include ad serving and a program where resellers receive one-time commissions for referring new sellers to the platform. Mustaqim says excessive penetration won’t be a problem because resellers typically focus on a handful of product categories, so even people in the same community won’t necessarily be competing with each other.