Entrepreneur

Companies Are Like, "Gotta Stock 'Em All." And This M'sian Startup Can Help.

Do you know how often your company replenishes the office supplies?

From filling up the stationery cabinet to making sure the coffee supply is always full, it’s never really an exciting task for companies to see that the office is well-stocked for the employees. Finding all the necessities can be quite tedious as they’re scattered around in different types of stores.

So to make things more convenient, this startup brings them all together on one platform.

Expanding Their Venture

Supplycart is a startup focusing on helping small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to buy office supplies, equipment and even snacks and food, with delivery thrown in as well.

The founders, Johnathan Oh and Soh Shangrong, aren’t particularly new to the scene. They also worked on Freshcart, an online grocery store founded back in 2014. They decided to expand their venture into more than just groceries so they started Supplycart to be a companion to Freshcart.

Image Credit: currentbiz.io

Supplycart managed to raise a seed round of US$500,000 from seed-stage venture fund KK Fund, Malaysia’s Cradle Fund, and private investors in 2016.

They realised that there was yet to be a single e-commerce platform that sell products with the right suppliers for all an office needs. After the team received the funding, they switched their focus to growing Supplycart as their main operation brand.

So the business-to-consumer (B2C) services that Freshcart offers has rolled into Supplycart in order to offer more diverse services.

“Supplycart allows us to have a wider reach, to attack a different vertical without confusing branding,” said Johnathan.

Offering Supplies On One Platform

Screenshot of their website.

The navigation of the website is pretty simple, with a layout that clearly displays the different type of services that Supplycart offers. At the top, you’ll see their products they offer sorted in a few categories such as pantry, furniture and technology.

After your company signs up on the website, you can start browsing through their range of products. Aside from categorising it, the website also offers price comparison from a number of vendors.

For the unsure or indecisive, there’s the “office starter kit”. This includes ball pens, markers, highlighters and tape, among other basic essentials.

Their delivery fee is free if the order reaches above RM200 and their cutoff time is at 5pm daily. Supplycart allows customers to report any defective or damaged items within 7 days of receipt for an exchange or return process to happen.

Supplycart also offers vendors with catering services on their site. It’s quite handy to have should any office need it for a one-time event.

As they do not hold an inventory of their own, they look for partners to connect with. “We believe in working together with partners that are good at what they are doing and leave it to their strengths to deploy for us, keeping assets and operational cost low,” said Johnathan.

Plans For Growth

Supplycart plans to mainly focus on Malaysia’s 600,000 registered SMEs. They see their services as a way to cut down costs of hiring and training office managers and secretaries to maintain office upkeep.

“During this process, we pivoted our target audience from our initial consumer market focus, bringing our experience in the B2C e-commerce space into the B2B space,”said Johnathan.

As of now, there is yet to be a proper competitor to their type of service. An example would be Pacific Office who offers the same delivery for office supplies but they don’t have an e-commerce platform. There are also services that focus either on just supplies or food but rarely for both.

Their service could be handy for offices who want to find supplies on one platform rather than browsing many at once but the market could also be smaller due to the focus relying on smaller and medium enterprises. Supplycart do have plans on expanding their service to include bigger companies but that may be further down the road.

Feature Image Credit: Steelcase

 

Subscribe to Vulcan Post Newsletter

Stay updated with our weekly curated news and updates.