M’sian Lifestyle Marketplace Secures US$1mil Seed Funding

“Before MCO, I frequented local arts bazaars and discovered a lot of interesting and high quality products from small brands and companies.”

“Due to the pandemic, the bazaars have shut down, so these brands rely on online sales, usually Facebook and Instagram. Generating demand online was essential, but securing new customers online is not as easy as it sounds, ”said Brian Lowe, founder of Poptron.

He said this in a press release issued today following the news of Poptron raising $ 1 million in seed funding from a company listed on the NASDAQ.

So what is Poptron doing for these brands, or microtags, as they’re called?

Poptron was launched on September 4, 2020 as an online lifestyle marketplace for micro-brands to sell their products because they couldn’t be in bazaars then.

Their platform is designed to overcome the challenges of running an online business as a micro-brand, which includes customer acquisition, business management and regional growth, which they will take care of.

Currently, they have over 100 micro-brands with over 700 kinds of products such as personal care, eco-friendly products, books, food, arts and crafts, etc.

Their products range from personal care to treats / Image credit: Poptron

Brands we’ve written about like Cindertoella, Cocova and Summorie have also jumped on board with them.

They look for suitable local lifestyle brands by searching for them on social media or in bazaars, according to their Instagram FAQs.

While they are currently only open to brands in Klang Valley, they will soon contact brands in Penang, Brian’s hometown, and also Johor.

As of now, they don’t take any transaction fees from their merchants, but in the future they will introduce payment features to promote that can increase a business’s visibility on their site.

Get huge funding and grow fast

The million US dollars they got will be used to scale up their operations and technology. Additionally, they plan to raise the remaining $ 375,000 through pitchIN in the first quarter of 2021.

“We also greatly appreciate the support we have received from our investor and legal counsel, Shin Associates,” Brian thanked in the press release.

The Poptron Team / Image Credit: Poptron

Based on their research, they found that there were nearly 2.2 million micro-brands worldwide in 2020, with a total available market of US $ 7.6 billion.

From this value, the available usable market for Poptron is worth US $ 3.8 billion, which equates to US $ 1.5 million in the expected global microtrack market of 3.79 million in 2025.

Dictionary time: Total Available Market (TAM) refers to the total demand for a product or service across all segments, all possible substitutes or alternatives, and through all potential channels. The Serviceable Available Market (SAM) is the portion of the Total Addressable Market (TAM) that can actually be reached.

B2B International / Wikipedia

“Poptron aims to capture US $ 1.6 billion in market share with 600,000 micro-brands driving our global revenues in 2025,” Brian said in the press release.

Prior to Poptron, he was the co-founder of My Performing Arts Agency (myPAA). In an interview with the New Straits Times, Brian revealed that his pitch for Poptron was actually rejected 42 times, although the references eventually got him somewhere.

“From the Malaysian network, he moved to Singapore, Hong Kong, Australia, the United States and then Europe. Eventually I got funding from Hong Kong, Singapore, and China. ”

Although it is a relatively new start-up, Poptron is already expanding its team and will begin operations in Singapore by the first quarter of 2021. According to the schedule on their website, they also plan to expand. in Indonesia this year.

  • You can read more news articles that we wrote here.

Featured Image Credit: Brian Lowe, Founder of Poptron and their ExtraNotOrdinary Bazaar in collaboration with the CIMB

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