Industry

Filipino Exporting Startup Raises P40 Million in Seed Funding

The funding round was led by local venture capital firm Foxmont Capital Partners.
ILLUSTRATOR WARREN ESPEJO
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A local online platform that helps businesses export their products to new markets has raised $800,000 (about P40 million) in a seed round funding. 1Export was founded in 2016 and assists small and medium businesses with various country requirements—such as labeling, documentation, etc.—so businesses can focus on their core business. 

The company says the fresh investment will be used to develop and improve its order handling capabilities, marketing services, financing, and other third-party integrations within its platform, a news release about the funding said.

Philippine venture capital firm Foxmont Capital Partners led the funding round alongside a consortium from the Manila Angel Investors Network and Kerubin Capital, IdeaSpace Foundation, Singapore based Iterative and other private investors.

The release said 1Export’s lifetime revenues of $1.5 million (about P75 million) and the fact that its services are available in 23 countries drew interest from the investors.

“Businesses all over the world are evolving at a rapid pace, even amidst a global crisis, thanks to technology,” said Mel Nava, founder and CEO of 1Export. “It’s time that businesses in the Philippines, especially micro, small, and medium enterprises, keep up with this digital transformation as well.

“The latest seed round will help us at 1Export scale up our tech platform and services to ultimately support Filipinos MSMEs, contribute to Philippine exports, and create a distinctly Filipino footprint in other markets,” he added.

1Export uses digital tools and platforms to help MSMEs with their export requirements.

In June 2021, the company reported $500,000 (P25 million) in export sales, or about 0.2% of the total Philippine exports. The company currently lists 450 supplier partners on its platform and distributes an overall volume of 4,000 tonnes of products, which are a mix of food and non-food products.

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The company plans to expand to 60 countries by the end of 2022.

Outside of e-commerce and logistics, 1Export also vets Filipino products to be cross-border compliant, allowing local businesses to follow the regulations of the market they want to explore or expand to. The company offers all-around exporting services such as compliance documentation, product labeling, logistics, export facilitation, and intensive business.

“In this time of crisis, Bayanihan is what will get us out of this,” added Daniel Remo, Chief Operating Officer of 1Export. “For 1Export, this means enabling Filipino businesses to go global. In the ever-changing landscape of e-commerce, we hope to be able to provide solutions that not only fit the needs of the here and now but to radically transform how Filipino businesses think of exporting.”

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Paul John Caña
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