Indonesian e-commerce start-up Ula is a wholesale marketplace aiming to modernize the country’s millions of mom-and-pop kiosks, or warungs, by providing inventory and delivery services as well as financing.
Founded in January 2020 by CEO Nipun Mehra, the company has thrived under a pandemic-induced shift to digital, so far raising over $117 million in funding from big names like Tencent and Lightspeed Venture Partners.
One among them is Bezos Expeditions, whose billionaire owner was told about Ula by one of the start-up’s early backers.
In a region where Amazon has limited presence, Jeff Bezos’s investment of an undisclosed sum through his family office can be seen as a vote of confidence.
“If you’d have asked me at that time that there would be a day, you know, 15 years later, where this moment would come, I would have probably been like it’s a dream,” Mehra, a former Amazon employee, told CNBC Make It.
Watch the video above to find out how a former Amazon software engineer and his co-founders are reinventing e-commerce for a new market, and securing serious funding as they go.