- Two Malaysians came from a law and finance background respectively, but chose to start a business in e-fulfillment.
- After struggling initially, the pair developed and copyrighted an intuitive automatic system that helps both them and their customers track orders.
- Since launching their new system, TresGo has seen a 22% month-on-month growth.
27-year-old Nadhra Fauzi and 30-year-old Safiyya Azman both came from finance backgrounds, along with Accounting and Law respectively.
So it might come as a surprise to some that these ladies are in the labour-heavy e-fulfillment industry, working to ensure that orders made on web-stores and marketplaces like Lazada and Zalora reach your homes safely and as quickly as they can manage.
They even do a lot of the heavy lifting of packages themselves if the need arises.
“Our research indicated that there was, and there will be continuous growth in e-commerce. And because we don’t specialise in marketing or production, we wanted to be of service to these companies and help them grow,” said co-founder Safiyya.
“You can learn how to run operations, but to run a company, you need finance, you need legal. We have that,” said Safiyya.
“Even though our professional backgrounds is very different compared to logistics, it did not deter us in any way.”
They’ve might not have felt the difficulties that their typical clients undergo, but they learnt from friends that the major industry pain points were: time management, packing up orders, and inventory management.
This was the basis behind their e-fulfillment company TresGo.
“Tres stands for ‘three’ in Spanish which symbolises our three core businesses—storing, packing and delivering. “GO” symbolises us (Nadhra and Safiyya) who are always on the GO!”
TresGo was built specifically to help smaller-scale sellers with inventory and deliveries, so businesses can actually focus on the important bits like product development, marketing and sales
Their specific target market is millennials, a generation that is steadily shifting towards selling online.
One barrier to getting more customers on board is that microsellers or SMEs might find it more cost-effective to handle packing, deliveries and warehouse storage themselves instead of spending money to get someone else to do it.
Nadhra sees things differently.
“Instead of charging shipping for the usual RM8, why don’t they charge RM10 for shipping instead? That actually covers storage, packing and delivery [on TresGo].”
They charge storage on the actual dimensions of each item, and for packing, they charge per transaction, and not per item, which helps their clients save costs for bulk orders.
They also prorate their warehouse space by two weeks, an incentive created to encourage merchants to have high inventory turnover
The pair thinks that TresGo could offer benefits for those who would otherwise charter their own space for storage, labour and packaging. Instead of it being a fixed cost, TresGo allows these costs to become variable.
“We knew it was important not to enter into a price war with our competitors as everyone in the industry knows how little our margins are,” said Safiyya.
Instead, they’re aiming for bulk.
“Our strategy is to get more clients and also to have bulk services available to increase our revenue.”
All of this is handled on a proprietary system copyrighted by TresGo.
After TresGo spent its first three months doing everything manually, Safiyya and Nadhra realised things had to change.
“When you’re offline, you have to do inventory management, order management, and etc. yourself on Excel. The human error was very huge—you have to type everything out, you have to remember to do it.
So they got an IT team to help them build an intuitive system that helps both them and their clients trace and monitor their inventory, as well as status of orders.
The system was designed to help both them and their clients consolidate orders from web-stores and marketplaces like Lazada and Shopify all into one place.
It’ll even give some analytics for those who want to see how well their fares are doing, and will help calculate costs, total revenue, and streamline orders automatically.
TresGo lets clients use this system for free, and will even make their way out to help clients with the onboarding process.
“In fact, our system is why people like us—investors or clients,” said Safiyya.
Since building the system, they’ve seen a 22% month-on-month increase in revenue.
After that, it’s all about grit and determination.
E-commerce in Malaysia grows more saturated as the days go by, and the same goes for e-fulfillment business.
So Safiyya and Nadhra have got to hustle a little bit more to stand out.
One way they do this is by trying to add a personable, human touch to their interactions with clients.
In customer service, they fight to ensure that all inquiries are answered within 24 hours, and these responses will come from either of the founders.
This is also a tactic to help them fight through the crowded ecosystem.
“So what we do is that even if we don’t reply the email right away, we always give them a call. We want to ensure that we don’t want their interest to die down,” said Nadhra.
The pair is also hoping that with their top notch customer service, clients would stick with them as they grow larger. As their clients grow, TresGo’s revenue will hopefully grow as well.
“It’s a combination of us betting on them and working on them,” said Nadhra with a laugh.
- You can find out more about TresGo here.