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Contxto – The cat’s out of the bag, people. Today (4) news broke that Petlove bought fellow Brazilian startup Vetus for an undisclosed amount.
The acquisition is part of Petlove’s plan to remain competitive with the likes of other Brazilian e-commerce platforms specializing in pet products like Petz and Cobasi.
This acquisition is quite strategic so as to turn the Petlove platform into a marketplace for third parties.
Petlove, the Mercado Libre in the making for pet care?
Vetus offers a management system for veterinarians, pet shops and hospitals. Through it, Petlove hopes to bolster its omnichannel reach and build its own marketplace.
“Vetus’s software will allow us to take our online operation and bring it to a physical store,” Petlove Founder Marcio Waldman told NeoFeed.
Using Vetus, Petlove wants to grant its partners (small pet shops and veterinarians) a marketplace through which they can sell products and services.
These partners fell onto Pelove’s lap after the startup acquired Vet Smart—an edtech platform for vets and students—in 2019.
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So… much… funding
In Brazil and beyond the pet care competition is intensifying.
Petz, a retail chain of pet stores and e-commerce platform has been planning an IPO (it had to postpone due to Covid). Meanwhile, pet goods startup Zee.Dog had closed US$18.8 million last July. And over in Colombia, LAIKA closed a seed round for US$5 million to strengthen its foothold in Mexico.
Petlove for its part had raised US$48 million last April with SoftBank and then closed funds—it’s unknown for how much—with L Catterton in June. But the point is Petlove is freshly funded for this dog-eat-dog competition.
What’s to come in petcare for Latam
Woof. The pet care industry in Latin America is hot.
And I’m one to believe it’s only the beginning.
For one, as people humanize their pets (e.g. buy clothes, throw them birthday parties, etc.) new market segments are rising.
Cafés for dog and cat owners, insurance for our furry companions, organic/healthy pet food… if it’s consumer-related and applies for humans you can likely translate it into a version for your dog.
Many of these trends emerged in the United States and they’re catching on in Latin America.
And these niches are so niche that as LAIKA co-Founder Camilo Sánchez once told me, all-encompassing platforms like Amazon and Mercado Libre cannot fulfill these unique needs.
Consequently, specialized platforms like LAIKA, Petlove, and Zee.Dog are answering the call. And that’s just in terms of consumer goods.
The realm of pettech, such as devices to interpret how your dog is feeling, are also gaining relevance in countries outside of Latam. Although there haven’t been funding rounds for that type of tech in the region as of late.
In any case, pet platforms are proving to be the pick of the litter among investors and pet parents couldn’t be any happier.
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