Konvy aiming to achieve unicorn status by 2027
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Konvy aiming to achieve unicorn status by 2027

Mr Huang, centre, with Mia Chou, Konvy International's eCommerce operation director, left, and Konvy International's chief commercial officer JC Chen.
Mr Huang, centre, with Mia Chou, Konvy International's eCommerce operation director, left, and Konvy International's chief commercial officer JC Chen.

Konvy International, a Bangkok-based online beauty platform, aims to become a unicorn by 2027 via expansion in Southeast Asia and a plan to go public by that time.

The company received US$11 million this month from a second Series A round, with investment from Robinsons Retail Holdings' investment arm New Day Ventures, Alibaba International Digital Commerce Group, and Konvy's existing investor Insignia Ventures Partners.

"The unfavourable economy is a risk for the growth of the local beauty market, which is expected to expand 6% this year, representing lower growth than last year. But the company will continue to grow revenue this year," said QingGui Huang, the Chinese co-founder and chief executive of Konvy.

The platform Konvy.com has been operating for 11 years.

"Beauty is still necessary even in an economic downturn, and women prefer to have red lipstick to cheer up. This will contribute to the growth of the makeup market this year," he said.

Although global tech investors are generally still being cautious, some see Konvy as a "hidden gem" with the potential to grow and break even amid tough competition, said Mr Huang.

Konvy's operating results in 2023 improved by more than 100% with over 2 billion baht in revenue.

The company offers over 20,000 items from 1,000 brands. Skincare products remain the top-selling category, with cosmetics and personal care products experiencing significant growth.

This year Konvy is focused on building and strengthening its entire ecosystem, including platform readiness and technology development. It is also increasing its adoption of artificial intelligence solutions, further expanding storefront branches and further penetrating the market.

"We will use the latest funding for regional expansion by stepping into the Philippines first by co-operating with brand partners to bring more revenue opportunity for Thailand-based beauty products. We plan to raise funds in a Series B round by early 2025," he said.

Thailand's beauty product market is worth $5 billion, while the Indonesian market is valued at $7 billion but already has strong players. The Philippines has a population of 100 million and a beauty market valued at $300 million, which makes it attractive, said Mr Huang.

However, under the current economic conditions, Konvy will invest carefully and will not burn the money on marketing activities, he said.

The online beauty market in Thailand accounts for 30% of the overall beauty market in the country and it is expected to reach maturity at 40% of the total market, meaning Konvy needs to grow beyond Thailand, said Mr Huang.

"Our ambitious goal is that by 2027 we will be a unicorn with a business valuation of $1 billion with revenue of 8 billion baht, up four times from 2023," he said.

He said the platform helps partner brands expand their customer base. The company uses customer insights to procure popular products for sale and often change items seasonally in order to maximise inventory, said Mr Huang.

Moreover, he said the company will consider expanding Konvy's physical shops this year after opening its first one last year in Siam Center to target young people, with another opening in The Mall Bangkapi to tap the family market segment.

The shops help expand Konvy's customer groups to those aged 20-24, adding to its existing customers aged 28-34, said Mr Huang.

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