How Unicommerce intends to deploy $5M to capture Southeast Asia, Middle East

In conversation with YourStory, Kapil Makhija, CEO of Unicommerce, talks about the supply chain SaaS platform’s expansion and product development plans.
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Unicommerce, India’s largest ecommerce-focused supply chain SaaS platform, has decided to invest $5 million towards strengthening international operations and further expanding its presence in various countries of Southeast Asia and the Middle East.

The company has been consistently investing and growing its international business and will continue to acquire more clients and forge strategic partnerships in these markets. After becoming an undisputed leader in India and processing 20 percent of India’s ecommerce volumes, Unicommerce aims to establish itself as the preferred choice of ecommerce companies and retail brands in these regions.

Unicommerce will invest in the areas of product enhancement, setting up local offices, sales, and marketing along with hiring local talent in these regions.

With its experience of over nine years and working with clients across sectors in India, Unicommerce has created a truly global product portfolio designed for any ecommerce business.

The company has already acquired over 25 new clients in Middle East and Southeast Asia such as Dubai, KSA, Kuwait, Singapore, Philippines, Malaysia, etc.

The current investment will further empower the company to accelerate its expansion plans and achieve a whopping 400 percent growth in overseas business. As part of the aggressive growth strategy, the company also plans to commence operations in newer markets within these regions.

In a conversation with YourStory, Kapil Makhija, CEO, Unicommerce, talks about the plans that the company has for the future.

YourStory (YS): Could you elaborate on the kind of product enhancement you are looking at?

Kapil Makhija (KP): Unicommerce is recognised for offering ecommerce-focused supply SaaS solutions. So, all our upcoming products and solutions will focus on solving the supply chain-related problems for online selling. Currently, we offer order management, warehouse management, inventory management, omnichannel, and D2C solutions to companies in India and the international market.

Every country has its unique business requirements; ecommerce and operational challenges differ from market to market.

Therefore, we will be enhancing our products with more features, making them user-friendly. For instance, every country has its own taxation system; therefore we have to ensure that our solution is compatible with the taxation laws of various international countries.

While we have added a taxation system of multiple international markets, we will be adding more markets in the coming future. We will also be adding more data security features based on international laws and protocols of different international markets. We want to make truly global products and these enhancements will play a key role in this direction.

We already have 150+ integrations (highest in India). Now, with more international markets, we will be adding many more international ecommerce companies, logistics providers, ERP, and POS, making it simpler for companies to sell across the globe. Currently, our clients are selling across 90+ countries across the globe.

All Unicommerce products and solutions focus on solving the supply chain-related problems for online selling.

YS: How did you arrive at $5 million as a number?

KP: At Unicommerce, we have built a profitable business and this has helped us in ensuring that we are able to invest in international expansion without any external capital. We have been able to build a robust business with consistently growing revenue and profit; this allows us the flexibility to invest in the company’s international expansion plan.

The investment of $5 million is decided after understanding the market opportunity and the capital will be invested in various initiatives such as product enhancement, hiring local talent, establishing local offices, client acquisition, and sales and marketing.

YS: What kind of revenue are you looking for from the Middle East and Southeast Asian markets? What kind of growth are you looking at? What are your core plans?

KP: It’s been over a year since we started our international operations and we invested our initial time in getting the product ready by understanding the pain points of companies in Southeast Asia and the Middle East. We got a phenomenal response from companies in these markets.

We are expecting 400 percent revenue growth, and aim to continue the growth momentum by aggressively focusing on acquiring new clients in the existing markets of ME and SEA, along with adding multiple new countries in these regions.

In terms of market environment, Southeast Asia and the Middle East are developing ecommerce markets and are in a similar position as India was three to four years back. These regions are currently in the process of building the overall ecosystem and want to adopt the best practices from relatively mature markets such as India.

This presents an opportunity for Indian companies to capture the market share of the consistently growing ecommerce market. There is also increasing acceptance of the adoption of technology and workforces have strong technical skills, and are competitive in nature. Our plan is to build a strong team and establish regional offices in different countries of the Middle East and Southeast Asia.

YS: What are the kind of clients you have onboarded?

KP: At Unicommerce, we have a sector-agnostic solution and it is being used by companies across categories in India. Their testimonials and growth stories also allow us to target every online selling company in international markets, irrespective of size and category.

So far, we have been able to onboard some of the leading ecommerce retailers, D2C brands, and sellers. This this will act as a foundation for our growth.

In terms of key sectors, we will be focusing on companies operating in the fashion and accessories and beauty and personal care sector.

These segments contribute a huge part of overall ecommerce order volume, making it an obvious choice. Having said that, we will continue to acquire clients across sectors. In the Middle East, we are working with Vidiwell, RedTag, Toyfull, Gulf Oil & Gas to name a few. Some of our key clients in Southeast Asia are Edamama, PayO, Luxury Craving, and Illana among others.

Edited by Teja Lele Desai

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