Applecrumby & Fish wins $300k funding boost

An online boutique that offers all-natural and organic baby products, Applecrumby & Fish has obtained a fresh round of seed funding worth $300,000 from Silicon Valley’s VC 500 Startups.

The Malaysian company aims to use the money to establish itself as the top-of-mind site for safe baby essentials, reports Tech in Asia. Founded by husband and wife Sean and Jesmine Tan in Kuala Lumpur in late 2012, Applecrumby & Fish started out with 900 products. These have increased tenfold, and free same-day delivery is offered in its home market.

Like other parents, the Tans resorted to importing their preferred baby products. After having their first child in 2011 they fell in love with organic brands not easily available in Malaysia.

“We are very sensitive to the needs of parents who are looking for the best they can afford for their baby, at fair prices,” says Sean.

Applecrumby & Fish sells skincare products, toiletries, food, supplements, gear and toys. Its brands include Bellamy’s, Drypers, Enfa, Gerber, MamyPoko, Putto, Spectra, Stephen Joseph and Quinny, and there are plans to add other brands not unavailable online.

Its new funding will help it develop an in-house brand for baby products, starting with wipes and nappies. The company also wants to boost its content marketing and gear up for its launch in Indonesia as well as Brunei.

As well as those markets, it ships to Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines.

Applecrumby & Fish was among startups in the annual 10-week Distro Dojo program in Malaysia. Led by 500 Startups, the program focuses on customer acquisition, growth and distribution.

Applecrumby & Fish graduated at the top of the program last month, increasing its site traffic by more than 200 per cent and tripling its revenue in less than four weeks.

Meanwhile, the Tans aim to disrupt the diaper and wipes industry of South-East Asia with their inhouse brand, says Digital News Asia.

“We have done our research and there is nothing quite like our brand in the market, not at our kind of non-premium pricing but with premium quality,” says Jesmine, who is also COO.

She says the company has had 300 per cent year-on-year growth in terms of revenue, and aims to hit RM6 million (US$1.5 million) by the end of this year.

Before launching Applecrumby & Fish, the Tans were property investors who also freelanced as interior designers. Despite Applecrumby & Fish sounding similar to US retail giant Abercrombie & Fitch, the name stems from their daughter’s first word at the age of six month, “apple”.

“She would walk and crawl, dropping crumbs of food everywhere she went, hence crumby, while her favourite food was steamed fish,” says Jesmine.


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