Rainforest Raises $20 Mn Pre-Series A Led By Monk's Hill Ventures
Funds will be used to drive the company's growth strategy, including expanding its portfolio of e-commerce brands in the home goods, mother and kids, personal care, and pet categories by three times and growing its team
E-commerce brand aggregator Rainforest, on Wednesday, announced that it has closed a $20 million pre-Series A round led by Monk’s Hill Ventures. Other investors participating in the oversubscribed round are January Capital, Crossbeam Venture Partners, Amasia, Lo & Behold Group together with existing investors Nordstar and Insignia. Accial Capital is the debt provider for Rainforest, providing a previously announced $30 million debt facility.
The fresh funds will be used to double down on Rainforest’s growth strategy as it looks to acquire more Asia-based e-commerce brands, helping them to scale up and expand beyond its markets across Europe and America. By the end of 2021, the company plans to grow its current portfolio of e-commerce brands by three times. Rainforest will also be expanding its key leadership team with strategic senior hires adept in acquisitions, branding and marketing, product development, supply chain, operations, and strategy.
“We are happy to be backed by Monk’s Hill Ventures, and have Peng join the board as an experienced founder turned investor. With this round of funding, we look forward to providing well-deserved exits for more brand-builders across Asia and continue to scale up the brands they created with a world-class team at Rainforest,” said JJ Chai, chief executive officer, and co-founder, Rainforest.
Rainforest now has over $50 million for acquiring high-potential, e-commerce brands in Asia that are revenue-positive and category challengers in their niche, focusing on the home goods, mother and kids, personal care, and pet categories. Using its proprietary tech to manage operations, Rainforest works with its brands to improve inventory management, cost optimizations, and expansions to new marketplaces and channels – at scale. To date, Rainforest’s portfolio has seen over 50 per cent improvement in annual growth rates post-acquisition. Recently, the firm also acquired a China-based brand for $3.6 million as part of its latest initiative to expand its services into the Chinese market, especially with China-based merchants representing 75 per cent of new sellers on Amazon early this year, a number that is projected to grow.
“As one of the largest Amazon sellers in Southeast Asia, Rainforest is tapping into the rise of marketplace sellers off the back of a large, fast-growing e-commerce market. JJ and his team have demonstrated thoughtfulness while being formidable operators in acquiring and significantly growing e-commerce brands. We are excited to work with JJ and his team to scale and to be the leading buy-and-build e-commerce brand player in Asia,” shared Peng T. Ong, co-founder and managing partner, Monk’s Hill Ventures.
Since its operational launch in January 2021, Rainforest has acquired six e-commerce brands mostly based in Asia, with a target to triple its portfolio by the end of 2021.