From cashless payments, seamless overseas transfers, and the rise of neobanks, conducting business operations across borders has never been easier.
Established in 2018, Thuocsi, also known as BuyMed, is a pharmaceutical distribution company based in Vietnam. They work mainly in the B2B space, acting as the middleman between local pharmaceutical companies and medicinal drug manufacturers.
“We noticed that in countries like Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines, local pharmacies are unable to reach out to large manufacturing companies'', Ted, Head of Finance at Thuocsi, explains.
In order to combat this barrier, Thuocsi took it upon themselves to connect smaller pharmacies with manufacturers for their pharmaceutical supplies.
Today, the startup has 700 verified suppliers, manufacturers, and distributors on their platform, and serves over 7,000 healthcare providers.
Although Thuocsi conducts its operations in Vietnam, their holding company is based in Singapore due to its strategic location and ease of business. Despite this, Ted and his team still faced certain issues when receiving funds from overseas.
“With our business operating in Vietnam, we didn’t want to set up an entire finance team in Singapore from scratch just for the sake of receiving funds”.
By simply setting up their holding company in Singapore and opening an account with Aspire, the Thuocsi finance team is able to manage their finances in one place all the way from Vietnam. Aspire prides itself for making business banking easy for startup owners and entrepreneurs, and Thuocsi is certainly not a stranger to this.
Most startups aspire to initially succeed within their borders, but ultimately expand beyond them. Doing this requires hard work, but also a massive amount of working capital. The problem is, this is often off-limits for startups.
“The concept of financial loans for startups here in Vietnam is still very new and banks don’t just provide loans to very new companies without any profit yet”.
Ted explains that getting access to loans for startups is still relatively difficult in countries like Vietnam as startup culture is not as prevalent as it is here in Singapore. However, Ted and his team have benefited greatly from Aspire’s Credit Line in Singapore in such a short period of time.
Through Aspire’s low-interest and flexible line of credit, startups just like Thuocsi are able to receive additional funds to invest in marketing efforts to boost sales, support their current operations, and fund future expansions into other countries, making their service more readily available to communities outside of their own. Moving forward, Thuocsi hopes to expand their services across countries such as Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, and the Philippines, and hopefully to the rest of Southeast Asia.
Another one of Thuocsi’s biggest challenges is finding a reliable partner with the lowest FX rates. As most traditional banks have high foreign exchange rates, this becomes a serious financial strain for many startups as funds could be better utilised to invest into more key areas such as operational and marketing costs.
“When we had to transfer money from Singapore to Vietnam, it was crazy expensive. Now, transferring money with TransferWise within the Aspire platform is still the most competitive and is much easier to use compared to others”.
Our partnership with TransferWise allows business owners to make fast, inexpensive and convenient international money transfers in the same way it has enabled Thuocsi to disburse money from Singapore to other local banks in Vietnam without hassle. Instead of setting up a whole finance team in Singapore just for the sake of transferring funds, the task of making cross-border transfers has been made easier for them.
From business account matters, credit lines for start-up needs, all the way to FX support, Aspire is here to support you at every stage of your business growth. In the case of Thuocsi, there is no doubt that the Aspire FX solution powered by Transferwise was a major factor in their success today.
To find out how to make the most out of the lowest FX rates in the market for your business, check out our pricing page.