Shanghai-based Xiaopangxiong, an e-commerce platform hosting home decoration materials, raises USD 18.3 million in Series B

A niche market with no dominant players.

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Shanghai-based e-commerce platform Xiaopangxiong (little fat bear in English), has closed its Series B round, bagging RMB 130 million (USD 18.3 million) from investors led by Zhenghan Investment and followed by Yunqi Partners, reported Chinese tech-focused media outlet Lieyunwang.com on Wednesday.,

Matrix Partners China, which led Xiaopangxiong’s Series A round, also contributed cash in this round.

The fresh funds will be used to attract talents, upgrade its system and expand the company’s reach in the Yangtze River Delta region and later in other areas in China, said the firm.

Since Xiaopangxiong was founded in May 2013, it has gained a total of 68,000 registered users, 45,000 of which have once purchased products such as cement and glass via this platform. The company has small-and-medium-sized home decorating companies as its main buyers.

The firm has dozens of rivals based in different regions of China but none of these companies, including Xiaopangxiong, is big enough to be a dominant player in this sector, according to corporate intelligence information platform Tianyancha.com.

While consumer-facing e-commerce platforms such as Alibaba’s Taobao and JD.com are rather familiar to Chinese residents, entrepreneurs who still have an ambition in the e-commerce sector are aiming for niche markets, such as the above-mentioned home decoration sector and the industrial division.

Yang Ning, once the 28th employee of Alibaba, in July 2017 founded BWCMall, an e-commerce site hosting products for industrial maintenance, repair, and operations. In September of this year, the company closed its Series A round, raising USD 10 million.

BWCMall’s competitor Yesmro also closed its Series A round last month, bagging USD 10 million from investors led by Matrix Partners China.