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08 Mar 2024

An Interview with Niki Torres, Head of Growth Marketing at Choco Up

An Interview with Niki Torres, Head of Growth Marketing at Choco Up
                                                         eCommerce Expo Asia embraces International Women’s Day by shining a spotlight on the phenomenal female leaders shaping the tech industry. It’s an occasion to acknowledge the dedication and success of women who have tirelessly contributed. In this TechTalk, we were honoured to have Niki Torres, Head of Growth Marketing at Choco Up to share with us her experiences in navigating the tech landscape and recounting her most significant achievement to date.                                                            

What inspired you to pursue a career in the technology industry?

As the Head of Growth Marketing at Choco Up, I was excited to join a company that provides a solution to a problem that many female founders face: lack of access to capital. Choco Up is providing an innovative financing solution called revenue-based financing (RBF) that is filling an important gap in Singapore's funding landscape. Positioned between traditional funding sources such as venture capital and banks, RBF can be especially useful for businesses that may not be a perfect fit for these more conventional options. Unfortunately, female founders often face gender bias when seeking funding from VCs, but RBF can help level the playing field and offer support to promising startups led by women. Choco Up has already provided over $17.2 million in funding to female-led startups, and this is a positive step towards promoting greater diversity and inclusion in the startup ecosystem.


Could you share a standout experience you've had in your career that has left a lasting impression on you?

Before joining Choco Up, I gained valuable experience in understanding the challenges faced by female entrepreneurs, especially in Singapore. While hosting a podcast featuring female co-founders, I spent many hours discussing the hurdles they face and had my own experience pitching to investors. One of the most significant challenges is the dependence on venture capital (VCs) for funding. While the VC model is suitable for some businesses, newer forms of financing, such as revenue-based financing, have only recently arrived in the APAC region. However, there is still much work to be done to educate the market about its benefits. Revenue-based financing offers a more friendly option to founders as they do not have to give up equity. This is a significant advantage compared to the VC model, which often requires giving up equity in exchange for funding. With more awareness and education on alternative financing options, female entrepreneurs can have a better chance of success and growth in the industry.


What advice do you have for aspiring individuals looking to excel in this dynamic industry?

Always know your options.


As an exhibitor/sponsor at eCommerce Expo Asia, what aspects of your business or industry expertise are you most eager to showcase or discuss at the event?

Alternative funding sources for ambitious businesses looking to grow and scale.


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