#Asia Five stars: Thailand restaurant review portal lands Series B from InVent


Wongnai recently expanded into the beauty and lifestyle sector and hopes to use to money for an O2O platform

Thai Food FINAL

Wongnai Media Company Limited, the Bangkok-based company Wongnai and Wongnai Beauty, announced today it has raised an undisclosed Series B fundraising round lead by Intouch Holdings Public Company Limited.

Wongnai and Wongnai Beauty are review portals for both the restaurant and beauty/lifestyle industries.

The funding was facilitated through Intouch Holdings’ venture capital arm InVent. The deal makes Wongnai the ninth portfolio company for InVent and its largest investment to date.

The money will be used to grow Wongnai’s O2O business and expand into new verticals.

Also Read: Our best investment is human capital: InVent’s Tawan Boonyawat

“Recent studies show that Thai consumers are already spending around five hours each day on their mobile phone and in many ways Intouch Group is best positioned to take Wongnai to the next level with our access to over 38 million mobile subscribers as well as a strong network of local SMEs in Thailand,” said Thanapong Na Ranong, the Vice President and Head of Venture Capital Team at Intouch, in an official statement.

Wongnai Co-founder and CEO Yod Chinsupakul said his company already sees 80 per cent of traffic from mobile and surpassed 2 million registered users at the end of 2015.

Established in 2010, the service is similar to Yelp in the US in the sense that it offers reviews for lifestyle companies like beauty parlors, restaurants, spas and salons.

Users can see where their friends are visiting, upload pictures and write a quick tip for the community.

It also provides location-based recommendations — thus why the mobile portion of the startup has become so important.

Also Read: In Thailand, how does Lazada compare to five of its competitors?

“Additionally, e-voucher [are an] initiative of [our] plan to expand to O2O businesses. [It was] was launched later in [2015] with promising reception from the consumers who can enjoy special discounts at the restaurants they love at ease via their mobile phones,” said Yod in a statement.

In January 2016, InVent and Singtel’s Innov8 invested an undisclosed amount in the social commerce platform ShopSpot.

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.



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