Indonesian beauty platform Sociolla bags USD 40 million Series D funding led by EV Growth and Temasek

With its e-commerce site, media platforms, and omnichannel store, Social Bella wants to build a comprehensive digital beauty ecosystem in Indonesia.

Photo by Manu Camargo via Unsplash

Indonesia-based beauty e-commerce site Sociolla, via its parent company Social Bella,  snagged USD 40 million in a Series D funding round led by EV Growth and Temasek with the participation of EDBI, Pavilion Capital, and Jungle Ventures.

The new investment brings the company’s total funding to USD 52 million, according to CrunchBase.

East Ventures has been supporting Social Bella since its first inception in 2015. As the company grows, the VC firm believes that Social Bella will lead the country’s beauty industry, said EV’s co-founder and managing partner Willson Cuaca.

Founded in 2015 as an e-commerce site, Sociolla has grown beyond its core business, with a mission to build up an entire digital beauty ecosystem in Indonesia. Besides the e-commerce site known as Sociolla, the company also has a community platform, Soco, and a beauty review platform named Beauty Journal.

In an interview with KrASIA, co-founder and CMO Chrisanti Indiana said that Sociolla’s media platform started in 2018, initially as a blog for marketing purposes only. The traction was high and until now, a total of three million users have visited Beauty Journal. This encouraged them to develop a community platform as a third pillar.

In addition, the company also has a brand development unit that offers end-to-end distribution services for beauty and personal care products in collaboration with various international manufacturers.

Since 2018, Social Bella has recorded over 20.2 million visitors who visited the Sociolla website, the Soco platform, and Beauty Journal, according to the firm’s co-founder and president Chsristopher Madiam, at a press event in Jakarta today. “We target to have 100 million unique visitors by 2021,” he said.

The company said that it will utilize fresh funding to accelerate business, add more services, and strengthen its human resource capabilities, especially in technology roles.

Earlier this year, Social Bella launched a physical store that offers an omnichannel retail experience. The store is equipped with interactive displays that connect customers to the Sociolla and Soco platforms so customers can see product reviews while trying them out in person.

Based on a report by Euromonitor, the business potential of the beauty industry in Indonesia is valued at USD 6 billion in 2019 and it is expected to reach USD 8.4 billion in 2022, giving huge opportunities for beauty tech startups to grow.

Sociolla’s path, for now, seems to be different from that of another notable digital beauty startup in the region, Luxola. Founded in 2011 by Alexis Horowitz-Burdick, the Singapore startup was, in 2015, fully acquired by French luxury goods conglomerate LVMH through its cosmetic arm Sephora. Luxola was rebranded Sephora Digital.

With its media and community features, Social Bella also competes with Female Daily, a beauty product review and community website that has been around since 2007 and was reportedly acquired by CT Corp, an Indonesian media group, earlier this year.