The Philippines e-commerce market now has a gross merchandise volume of $12 billion, a 132% increase from 2020 and is expected to reach $26 billion in GMV by 2025. This is obviously good news for online sellers, but it also means more shipping. A headache, especially for small sellers who have to leave packages at couriers’ warehouses.
Shipmates wants to save their time and money by consolidating multiple couriers into a single platform. Online sellers can book couriers through its app, who can come to their location and pick up the packages. The startup, Y Combinator and Iterative alum, announced today that it has raised $2.2 million in seed funding. The round included Cathexis Ventures, Wavemaker Partners, Taurus Ventures, Capital X and Sketchnote Partners.
Founded in July 2021 by CEO Josh Supan and CTO David Marquez, Shipmates aims to become the go-to shipping tool for online merchants in the Philippines, while improving the country’s shipping infrastructure. Its platform allows online sellers to compare prices between different couriers and book standard or multiple orders.
The platform is currently connected with 9 courier companies and is the only aggregator in the Philippines that has both on-demand and standard couriers, the founders said.
Supan and Marquez are childhood friends who started e-commerce Enable in 2017. “We pivoted from that when we saw that the problem with merchants wasn’t coming online, it was shipping their online orders,” Supan told Technology Flow.
Shipmates’ target customers are small to mid-sized online sellers whose typical basket sizes range from $20 to $50. Supan explained that the shipping process in the Philippines is still manual as couriers are not connected to e-commerce platforms and rely on business owners to physically drop off packages at a hub or warehouse.
As a result, most online sellers require one day to ship orders. Shipmates, however, cuts that process to less than 10 minutes, Supan said. The platform also automates waybills and address validations.
Shipmates monetizes by charging 30 cents for each order booked through its platform. Supan said its revenue has been growing 30% month-on-month since the launch of its platform last December.