Edamama, a new e-commerce platform designed for mothers, raised $5 million in its latest pre-series A round. The amount will be used in automation, product development, innovations and warehouse, and logistics operations.
The round was led by Gentree Fund together with Foxmont Capital Partners, Robinsons Retail, and Kickstart Ventures Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Globe Telecom.
Edamama was established amidst the pandemic by founder Bela Gupta D’Souza, who saw the pain points of mothers as consumers when purchasing online. She said that it is common for mothers to spend many hours in search of the best products for their children only to end up with mediocre items that have inferior quality from untrusted sources.
Edamama addresses the issue of quality and other challenges common among today’s ecommerce platforms, such as channel fragmentation, non-established brand trust, the lack of a discovery-led buying experience, and poor customer service.
Minette Navarrete, president of Kickstart Ventures, likens the mission of edamama to the adage ‘it takes a village to raise a child,’ a reminder of the value of a community of supportive, trusted, personal relationships that embrace the experience of parenting.
“Edamama captures the essence of this ‘village’: an easy, trustworthy and personalized shopping experience for busy moms; useful, curated, verified content; and safe community interactions that affirm and support parenting.”
Edamama designed their “everyday trust platform” for mothers to get easy online access to quality products and services while ensuring the lowest prices through a system that simplifies purchasing experience.
Since its conception, edamama has launched several products carefully designed to make shopping more convenient for moms and their families.
Through edamama’s Gift Registry, users can create gift wish lists for special occasions, from baby showers to birthday celebrations, and share these with loved ones. They will then receive their desired items gift wrapped and in time for their special occasion.
Another exciting feature rolled out in May 2021 is Subscribe & Save, the Philippines’ first online diaper subscription service launched in exclusive partnership with Pampers. Moms now have the opportunity to subscribe to their favorite Pampers variants for delivery every 30 or 60 days, while enjoying free shipping and surprise freebies with every delivery.
Edamama also launched Explore, a one-stop destination for parents to book the best online classes, events, and activities for their children.
Moreover, its platform also delivers authentic parenting content, personalized promos, and a community for parents to make the right decisions. For greater engagement, it developed “bean” rewards that can be converted to peso credits.
The edamama team constantly works towards creating innovative features for moms to use, staying true to their mission of simplifying decision-making and reimagining online shopping for mothers.
“The developing eCommerce landscape that sells everything to everyone is a bit of a wild wild west; but through mindful curation and intense engagement, edamama is earning trust and repeat purchases, capturing a meaningful and growing share of the mommy market,” said Navarrete.
The Philippine e-commerce market is the fastest growing in Southeast Asia. According to Google’s eConomy SEA 2020 report, it grew by 55 percent at the height of the pandemic as the purchasing behavior of consumers shifted from face-to-face to digital.
One of the major growth areas of the market is the maternity products segment, which is in turn being driven by the country’s high fertility rate. An HKTDC commissioned study predicts that the segment’s value will surpass the US$1 billion mark in 2022.
“E-commerce is a scale game and we’re very excited about scaling up,” D’Souza said, lauding the local market’s ability to transition from traditional to online shopping.
Edamama services mothers nationwide, although it acknowledges the need for further upgrades on its logistics operations to cope with the increase in orders coming from all over the country. It hopes to use part of the funds raised to expand its warehouse capabilities and further improve its delivery services for customers to receive their goods more quickly.
Apart from this, the company is also working on omni-channel expansion and providing new mediums of direct-to-consumer communication, such as selling through a live stream.
“Our goal is to continue being vertically focused, so we could gain and build the trust of more mothers in the country,” D’Souza said.
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