The Peruvian startup offers to buy all kinds of consumer goods in a safe and easy way, and trusts TheVentureCity for its next steps
Access to certain products is not the same everywhere. This is well known by Anson Tou (CEO) and Mauricio Jiménez (COO), childhood friends from Lima and both techies that saw how in Peru it was quite an adventure to get the latest gadgets that were on sale. Luckily, as a kid, Anson spent some summers in the US and it was there where he bought his first iPod Nano, a totally out of reach gadget for his friends back in Peru. Taking advantage of these summer trips, he joined an online forum and offered to bring back similar gadgets to his friends. That’s how the business idea of Qempo begun. The name of the startup is a made up word, but with Quechua inspiration, it does have a meaning: connect people who help each other. The goal of Qempo is that any product can reach an emerging country and, at the same time, be able to export Latin American products to anywhere in the world.
Anson’s parents, from China, moved from Lima to Miami when he was just a teenager. They had brought him up with an entrepreneur mindset and customer service focus, by opening first a restaurant in Lima and then doing the same in Florida, where Anson would help as a waiter. “That’s where I learned the value of effort, mostly on the weekends” he says.
At the same time, the idea of taking advantage of his trips from one country to the other to bring products that were hard to reach in Peru was taking shape. In 2016, Anson decided to develop a professional mode of operations and started creating a team. Now, Qempo staffs, apart from Anson and Mauricio, Josué Villasante (Backend), Gonzalo Díaz (CPO), Andrés Villabona (CSO) and Christian Llanos (Front end) and Gi Wah Dávalos (CTO).
The company has grown; they are now partners with Amazon and have clients in Peru, Colombia and the US. Qempo has a simple modus operandi — the buyer adds a link with what they want to purchase on Qempo, and a different user offers to buy it in the US and takes it back to the country of the buyer in their own luggage, always following the legal requirements. The app allows tracking the shipping and the user that brings the package charges a commission. It’s all based in mutual trust and benefit.
We look towards “eliminating borders so that people can access the products they like without problems, regardless of where they live and, that what they order arrives to them in a quick, cheap and trusted way” says Anson.
Now Qempo and their work towards creating a more democratic access to any kind of product with the help of their community lands at TheVentureCity in Miami. They are clear on the why: “They are the first VC fund we have trusted”.
The company joins our acceleration and growth program with a scalable model, which relies on elements that represent TheVentureCity, such as trust, tracking and innovation.
For Ricardo Sangion, our VP of Growth Accelerator Americas, this is a very special startup: “Qempo is an amazing team of friends that have a dream in common: remove borders so people can have hassle free access to products they like, no matter where they live. The founders have been working on this problem for the past 10 years and have evolved from helping only friends and family to now offering their solution to anyone in Peru and Colombia. What I found to be unique at Qempo is that users can order anything on their platform and their algorithms will take care of the best way to use all different logistics channels to make it faster, cheaper and more reliable, so users don’t have to worry about it.”
Jointly we will allow Qempo to reach its potential and become a reference for the collaborative economy. Welcome!