[THE INVESTOR] Malaysia-based e-commerce aggregation service provider iPrice Group on Aug.22 said it has secured additional funding from Korean internet giant Naver.
While the firm declined to comment on the amount, it said the funds would be used to invest in the Indonesian market and for improving user experience, especially in fashion and electronics.
Naver’s direct investment comes only three months after iPrice closed a Series B round -- reportedly estimated to be US$4 million -- led by Line Ventures, the venture capital arm of Naver’s Japanese subsidiary Line Corp. It hopes to get more investments in the future, including from other Korean firms.
“Naver not only operates the leading search engine in Korea but has also been able to build an impressive shopping and price comparison engine in the country,” said David Chmelar, iPrice Group co-founder and CEO. “Given the wealth of experience and strategic value that Naver brings to the table, we couldn’t pass the opportunity to welcome them as our latest investor.”
“The tremendous traction which iPrice has continued to display throughout its latest fundraising is a testament to the impressive execution of the team and the explosive growth of Southeast Asia’s e-commerce market,” said Peter Na of Naver.
Established in 2014, iPrice operates in seven countries, including Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam and Hong Kong. On the platform, consumers can easily discover different products and compare prices and specs from major e-commerce players in the region, including Lazada, Shopee, Zalora, Jd.com, Bukalapak and Tokopedia.
“We deliver a better product experience for our users, with a more comprehensive catalogue, precise price information, intuitive and faster interface, while providing high-quality traffic to our e-commerce partners,” Matteo Sutto, CMO of iPrice told The Investor in an email response.
When asked if the firm is eying an IPO in the near future, Sutto said the firm is now only focusing on providing better services to its users and e-commerce partners.
“By doing so, we want to fulfill our vision to become the primary gateway to online shopping in Southeast Asia,” he said.
By Ahn Sung-mi (firstname.lastname@example.org)