Tjufoo announced on Wednesday that it has raised seed funding by TNB Aura, a Singapore-based thesis-led, high conviction venture capital firm investing across Southeast Asian companies that are primed for the future and ready to change the very face of their categories. This round of funding will help Tjufoo strengthen its commitments to advancing the Indonesian economy through the development of a number of local direct-to-consumer brands.

“Carrying the value Indonesia First, Tjufoo is committed to working towards the country’s comprehensive and sustainable progress across social, economic, and environmental sectors. Brands, once onboarded, will receive access to the Tjufoo Ecosystem that includes scaled distribution, research, analytics, data platforms, as well as optimized supply chain and infrastructure. More importantly, we connect brands with experts from various well-known Indonesian companies who can help them with strategic inputs and partnerships to grow together. We are also committed to create a more inclusive industry, including supporting women’s empowerment in the business world,” said TJ Tham, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer Tjufoo.

Since its founding in early 2022, Tjufoo has rapidly scaled its brand portfolio under the helm of TJ Tham, a former Grab founding team member. The company provides brands with equity capital and exclusive access to its extensive networks and technology infrastructure. Tjufoo also works with brand owners to help provide them with options for exits, in order to get some cash out in parallel.

“Tjufoo’s focus on native offline brands in Indonesia, providing primary growth capital and the exceptional team led by Co-Founders TJ and Aldrian Foo, sets them apart from the rest. We look forward to supporting the digitalization of the next wave of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in Indonesia,” said Vicknesh R Pillay, Founding Partner of TNB Aura.

Unlike other brand aggregators, Tjufoo’s primary focus is the Indonesian market where they help brands across various categories to rapidly grow their businesses. Some of the brands that have partnered with Tjufoo include ACMIC, Cypruz, Granova and Dew It. Tjufoo has succeeded in helping these brands to 2 times its overall growth in less than a year, 4 times uplift in online sales in less than a quarter, added over 1,000 new sales points, and has given access to over 5 million new users.

This year, Tjufoo aims to accelerate the growth of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Indonesia by acquiring more potential brands. Furthermore, Tjufoo is also committed to expanding the Indonesian market and providing Indonesian consumers with more choices, by helping direct-to-consumer brands from outside the country expand into the country. To such brands, Tjufoo becomes a partner that not only provides investment, but also end-to-end expertise from business strategies, setup, talent acquisition, and management to a full roll-out across the country.

Tjufoo’s commitment to empowering women in business

Data from Statistics Indonesia in 2021 reveals that 64.5 percent of MSMEs are managed by women. The Mastercard study in 2020 also assessed Indonesia as one of the countries with the most supportive business ecosystem for women. However, there are still many challenges that women have to face in running a business, with capital being one of the biggest obstacles. Research from Crunchbase found that only 2.3 percent of female-led startups received funding. The Ministry of Cooperatives and Small and Medium Enterprises also noted that two out of three MSMEs owned by women were forced to close permanently or temporarily during the pandemic.

Tjufoo recognizes this and is committed to growing women leaders in business. In this context, Tjufoo in collaboration with Stellar Women announced the launch of a special incubation program AKSI Perempuan (Women-Led Business Acceleration) for businesses founded by women. Stellar Women is a community-based platform from, by, and for women to reach their full potential personally and professionally. Participants selected for the program will undergo training for 3 to 6 months from experienced practitioners. At the end of the program, up to 10 businesses will be selected to receive capital and expert support from Tjufoo to take their businesses to the next level.

“We understand that women face many obstacles in running a business. In addition to capital, women have key roles in the family, dealing with stigma and social pressure, as well as the lack of access to important information and networks. Therefore, we are enthusiastic to be able to collaborate with Tjufoo in opening up more opportunities for womenpreneurs to find business opportunities out there. We hope that this initiative can inspire many women to be bolder in starting a business,” said Samira Shihab, CEO & Co-Founder of Stellar Women and also CEO & Co-Founder of Tinkerlust .

In addition, Tjufoo has also collaborated with PT Sarinah in organizing Sarinah Pandu, a collaborative program intended to increase the entrepreneurial advantage of SMEs, especially in empowering women entrepreneurs. Sarinah Pandu is designed to strategically develop SME actors through a series of training sessions with a systematic syllabus and extensive collaboration opportunities with stakeholders from various sectors.

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