Singapore E-Business (SGeBIZ), a digital procurement, payment and sourcing platform provider, is expanding into supply chain finance after securing its first institutional funding round.
The company is raising US$10mn via a rolling close in a series A round led by Origin Capital Management. It will use the proceeds to add financing capabilities and build partnerships with lenders and insurers.
Based in Singapore, with offices in Malaysia, Thailand and India, SGeBIZ says it is the city-state’s largest SME procure-to-pay platform, currently serving around 4,000 SME clients in the food and beverage sectors. Its main offerings are EzySource, a cloud-based marketplace that connects suppliers to buyers, EzyProcure, a B2B procure-to-pay platform that automates ordering, inventory management processes, and EzyPayment, which provides accounts payables automation and real-time reconciliation.
The company says its digital cross-border systems connect directly to businesses’ back-end accounting or enterprise resource planning systems, creating an end-to-end data flow through SGeBIZ’s platform, which it uses to produce analytics for its customers to identify growth possibilities.
In the next phase of its growth, SGeBIZ aims to leverage the data that flows through its systems as well as its footprint in the Southeast Asian region to provide financiers with an opportunity to address the needs of its customers for cross-border trade finance and B2B payment solutions.
“Since we started in 2014, we have achieved dominance in the domestic market in Singapore, covering importers buying from manufacturers overseas who then supply downstream to the end retailers,” Edmund Louis, group CEO and founder of SGeBIZ tells GTR. “Our objective now is to embed supply chain finance into this ecosystem, creating a gateway to this profitable but underserved market that many financiers are not able to reach.”
As part of Origin Capital’s involvement in the investment round, an arms-length lending vehicle will be established, which will enable financiers to participate in transaction-based lending. Louis tells GTR that the structure also includes an insurance wrapper to provide financiers with an additional layer of security.
“SGeBIZ will never be a lender. We are a technology firm,” says Louis. “We provide strategic data that feeds into the credit models enabling liquidity providers to support the transaction-based lending programme to empower businesses globally.”
Kelvin Tan, CEO and chief investment officer at Origin Capital, says the fund is “very pleased to support SGeBIZ’s journey as they pivot towards high-growth profitability, and are now poised to scale regionally, while delivering massive new value for SMEs”.
“Through SGeBIZ, our firm’s mission shall be to co-deliver substantial impact to supply chain resilience in the wholesale trade and food and beverage sectors,” adds Tan.
The company now plans to bring in more investors, lenders and strategic partners to expand its model across the region, with the eventual aim of creating a global solution.