Saturdays Announces Series A Funding, Led by Altara Ventures
Direct-to-consumer (DTC) startup Saturdays announced a series A funding with an undisclosed investment value. The funding was led by Altara Ventures with participation from DSG Consumer Partners and other affiliates.
The last time Saturdays closed seed funding from Alpha JWC Ventures, Kinesys Group, and Alto Partners was in 2020, but it was only announced in February 2021.
Saturdays Co-Founder Andrew Kandolha said the funding would accelerate its expansion throughout Indonesia and strengthen the technology-based omnichannel experience.
“With its position as a DTC brand, it is important to provide customer satisfaction at the first meeting. Therefore, our technology-based omnichannel approach has an important role to make it easier for customers to shop with a more pleasant experience, whether through websites, applications, SMS, trial services at home, to the physical store,” said Andrew.
Partner and CMO of Altara Ventures Huiting Koh added, a hybrid solution by combining a physical store network and trial service at home is the attraction of Saturdays in expanding its reach with the lifestyle concept.
For information, Saturdays was founded by Rama Suparta and Andrew Kandolha in 2016. The company offers lifestyle products with eyewear as its main business. Saturdays produces its own lens and frame materials, from design, manufacturing, to direct delivery to consumers.
Saturdays Omnichannel Service
Saturdays seeks to answer one of the important issues related to the handling of visual impairment in Indonesia. The company noted that only a third of the population in Indonesia can afford to access or purchase prescription glasses or vision care services.
In addition, there are still many people who choose to buy branded eyewear products designed for western faces, or simply buy fake glasses of poor quality.
The World Health Organization (WHO) reveals that glasses can increase productivity by 30% and overall income by 20% in developing countries.
To provide an omnichannel experience, Saturdays adopts an online-to-offline (O2O) model through websites and retail stores. Its first flagship store is located at Lotte Shopping Avenue, Jakarta, which is integrated with a coffee shop to give a touch of lifestyle. The current total of Saturdays stores has reached 15 outlets.
Saturdays also released the “Saturdays Lifestyle” application in early 2021 as a strategy to shape new behavior in shopping for glasses through digital platforms. This application allows consumers to conduct product trials directly from home (Home Try-On).
Saturdays claims to be a pioneer of this service because it is handled by licensed opticians by presenting more than 100 frames along with eye testing equipment that is convenient to do at home.
“We want to present a new vision through an omnichannel approach so that we can provide solutions for anyone by providing glasses for millions of people,” added Saturdays Co-founder Rama Suparta.
D2C in Southeast Asia
In his writing, the former Venture Analyst Intern at Plug and Play APAC Kartik Jain revealed a number of important factors to see the readiness of the Southeast Asian market to welcome D2C. Indeed, the D2C market has grown significantly, mainly triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Basically, D2C actors must be able to fully control the supply chain from the aspects of design, manufacturing, marketing to distribution.
However, before that, D2C players also need to pay attention to other macro factors that can play a significant role in the success of D2C, such as internet penetration and electronic and digital-based payments.
Jain also highlighted the metrics of Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) and Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) which both have an important position in the D2C model.
According to him, the D2C model must have high retention to make the economic value more viable. However, to achieve this, D2C actors need to spend more on marketing which in the end must increase the CAC.
In the context of the Indonesian market, the e-Conomy SEA Report noted that there were as many as 21 million new digital users from the start of the pandemic to mid-2021, of which 72% came from non-metropolitan cities.
Meanwhile, Indonesia’s e-commerce GMV is estimated to grow 52% to reach $53 billion in 2021 and is projected to reach $104 billion in 2025.