This project was initiated by: Coopita Pte Ltd

Coopita is a curated platform focused on empowering Asian artisans and craftsmen (“makers”) working towards preserving traditional crafts. We are impact driven and work with maker communities to empower them to create ethical and sustainable products at a small scale (i.e no assembly lines/moulds) and have a significant level of direct human involvement (i.e. 70% or more). We leverage technology solutions to solve some of the key problems faced by these maker communities such as access to global markets (B2C/B2B e-commerce), provide logistics solutions, financing for product development and increasing awareness of traditional crafts (Events and workshops). Since we began operations in June 2016, we have focused on growing our maker community and today we work with 107 maker organisations working with more than 6,000 makers across 8 countries in Asia.

Coopita Pte Ltd has been endorsed by:

_Coopita


Project Summary

Leverage technological solutions to help Asian artisans gain access to global markets, financing solutions and product development support

Problem

Throughout Asia, makers working towards preserving traditional crafts skills are struggling to survive. Rapid deforestation, involvement of multiple middlemen, lack of economy of scale and inflow of cheap replicas are some of the major factors affecting these makers. In many parts of Asia, loss of these traditional craft techniques not only leads to loss of intangible culture but also a loss of a sustainable livelihood for these craft communities across Asia. We traveled across 8 countries of Asia and worked closely with our makers to identify the key challenges faced by them. These challenges ranged from presence of multiple middlemen, accessing financing for product development to lack of consumer understanding about the products. Based on our market survey and conversations with industry experts, we shortlisted three key problems that Coopita focuses on - Lack of market access to global markets, challenges in securing financing for product development and lack of consumer awareness of traditional crafts.

Solution

Coopita aims to create measurable socio-economic impact for our maker communities by providing a range of solutions. We monetise our business by charging a commission fee for solutions provided to the makers which is priced in the products by the makers. The key solutions provided by Coopita to meet the needs of our makers are: Global market access Coopita’s B2C E-commerce platform provides a platform for makers to showcase their products to a global audience. With a focus on cross border B2C e-commerce, we are currently integrating with logistics tech aggregators to get discounts on each parcel shipped out of Singapore. The platform charges include a flat marketplace commission fee (5%) without any listing charges. In addition to marketing our makers and their products to consumers we also do B2B sales to businesses looking for authentic and sustainable products. Financial advisory  We work closely with makers who are in need for financing and work alongside them to develop crowdfunding campaigns or grant proposals to achieve their funding needs. Community Building We organise offline events such as workshops, panels and marketplaces to showcase the extraordinary skills of our talented makers to the consumers and leverage this platform to educate the consumer and to act. By organising events such as Meet the Makers SG – an art as craft showcase with marketplace, live demonstrations and workshops, we are not only able to provide makers additional revenue sources but more importantly we can showcase their skills to people in developed countries and educate them on traditional crafts. In addition to this, we are also able to provide our makers a stage which goes a long way in restoring the pride associated with artisanal work – a key objective of Coopita in ensuring craft preservation. Through these three solutions, we aim to develop Coopita as an integrated platform which looks to work closely with makers and continues to add value towards these traditional crafts and the skills associated with them.

Ask

We are seeking US$ 250,000 in grant and/or equity. These funds will be deployed in building our three solutions mentioned above so that we can empower and pass more value to the makers. The funds will be used mainly for these areas: Marketing (42%), Manpower (25%), Tech Maintenance and Development (23%) and Admin and Miscellaneous Expenses (10%). Across the different solutions, most of the funding will be channeled to Market Access (US$ 221,00) with the remaining funding (US$ 29,000) to be used for Financial advisory and Community Development. Non-financial support: - Access to global networks and partnerships for B2B sales. - Marketing and communication: understanding USA and European markets.
 
 
 

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