Today, we’ve got an update on Asian e-commerce news and trends. We start with a report from eMarketer predicting e-commerce sales of $14 billion in 2016 for the region. Criteo says consumers used smartphones to complete the majority of mobile transactions in every Asia-Pacific market for the first time. Indonesian consumers used smartphones in 83% of transactions.
Bain & Company estimates the number of ASEAN digital consumers reached 150 million in 2015 with 100 million or 75% buying online. A Pitney Bowes report says Asian consumers are among the biggest cross-border shoppers with Singapore (89%), Australia (86%) and Hong Kong (85%) leading. Japan’s Mitsui paid $9.6 million to buy 10% of MatahariMall e-commerce in Indonesia.
Oxford Economics predicts Vietnam will gain an additional $5.4 billion in the economy by 2020 due to the impact of mobile and e-commerce. Vietnam E-Commerce and Information Technology Agency (VECITA) said 30% of consumers will buy online by 2020. Taylor Nelson Sofres notes brand marketing is shifting from TV to online as Philippine consumers adopt e-commerce buying habits.
Thailand’s $8.6 billion mobile service market could serve as a model for the SE Asia region according to event group Bangkok Entrepreneurs. Malaysia’s new 2017 budget hopes to promote the growth of its digital economy by introducing the world’s first digital free trade zone and digital hubs. Aladdinstreet.com.sg launched the world’s first premium quality products and halal e-Marketplace in Singapore.
B2C Ecommerce Heats Up in Southeast Asia
Ecommerce spending in Southeast Asia is growing by leaps and bounds thanks to growing rates of digital adoption among the region’s digital consumers. This rapid growth in ecommerce activity is helping raise revenues for Southeast Asia’s top online retailers, with some analysts predicting a dramatic rise in revenue over the next five years.
According to an August 2016 analysis of Southeast Asian ecommerce from Frost and Sullivan, business-to-consumer (B2C) ecommerce sales in the region are predicted to grow from $11 billion in 2015 to $25 billion by 2020, representing a compound annual growth rate of 17.1%.
eMarketer’s own 2016 forecast of retail ecommerce sales in the same six Southeast Asian markets are similar to, although slightly above, Frost and Sullivan’s own estimate. The forecast predicts retail ecommerce sales for the six countries studied will surpass $14 billion in 2016. Retail ecommerce sales exclude sales of travel services, which are included in B2C estimates. Via emarketer.com
Mobile now dominates ecommerce transactions in Asia: Criteo report
Yvonne Chang, Criteo’s executive managing director, Asia Pacific, said the region has been a mobile commerce powerhouse for a few years now, driven by multiple device ownership in developed markets like Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and Taiwan. These markets are now being joined by rapidly growing “mobile-first” or “mobile-only” markets like India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam.
For the first time, smartphones delivered the majority of mobile transactions in every major global market, with the Asia-Pacific region—Japan, South Korea, Southeast Asia and Taiwan—leading the charge.
Indonesia’s retail mobile transaction share, with more than 83 percent of transactions on smartphones (as compared to tablets), is both the highest and fastest growing within Southeast Asia.first time Via campaignasia.com
ASEAN e-commerce market keeps booming
According to Bain & Company, the number of digital consumers, or those aged over 16 and using e-commerce, reached 150 million in 2015. Of them, around 100 million or 75 percent actually purchased goods online.
By nation, Indonesia ranked at the top with 51 million digital consumers, followed by Vietnam (31 million), the Philippines (28 million), Thailand (23 million), Malaysia (14 million) and Singapore (3 million).
“Chinese and global Internet companies should look at Southeast Asian e-commerce as their next potential gold rush,” reported IT-specialized media TechCrunch in June, 2015. Via koreatimes.co.kr
APAC leads cross-border e-commerce
According to the Global Online Shopping Survey by Pitney Bowes, a US technology firm, 94% of consumers frequently shop online in their home markets, but two-thirds (66%) of them have also bought online from another country in the past year.
Consumers in Asia-Pacific are at the forefront, the report found, with Singapore (89%), Australia (86%) and Hong Kong (85%) having the highest number of cross-border shoppers.
“As domestic online shopping becomes more frequent, it can create familiarity and comfort to reach across borders,” the report stated, while noting that the top countries globally for monthly and annual cross-border shopping include Australia (78%), Singapore (77%), Canada (72%), Mexico (71%) and Hong Kong (70%).
Pitney Bowes identified a growing global trend involving consumers making in-store purchases during their international travels that are then followed up by online purchases from the same cross-border retailer. Via warc.com
Mitsui wades into Indonesian online shopping
Japanese trading house Mitsui & Co. will take a minority stake in an Indonesian online retailer to gain a foothold in the country’s fast-growing e-commerce market.
Mitsui will spend a few billion yen (1 billion yen = $9.6 million) to purchase a roughly 10% stake in Global Ecommerce Indonesia in a deal set to close in November. GEI runs MatahariMall, a digital retailing platform that went live in September last year.
Indonesian conglomerate Lippo Group controls GEI and, in addition to the online platform, runs 150 Matahari department stores in the country. The chain enjoys wide name recognition and MatahariMall has become a top-ranking Indonesian online retailing site. Via asia.nikkei.com
Mobile-mad Vietnam’s economy to get $5.1-bln online boost: researchers
Vietnam’s economy is set to gain an additional $5.1 billion by 2020 due to mobile internet growth, said researchers from Oxford Economics at a workshop in Hanoi Tuesday.
The mobile internet sector is expected to contribute an amount equal to 6.2 percent of GDP to the country’s economic growth, and also create 145,600 jobs for the Southeast Asian country from 2015-2020, according to the researchers.
Rapidly growing mobile internet has generated roughly $3.7 billion and provided around 140,000 new jobs for Vietnam since 2010, Oliver Salmon, senior economist at Oxford Economics, said. Mobile subscription rates in Vietnam have doubled over the past five years and now 4 out of 10 people are active users. Via e.vnexpress.net
A third of Vietnamese set to shop online by 2020
The online shopping trend is growing so rapidly in Vietnam that it is forecast 30% of the population will be buying goods and services over the internet by 2020, according to the Vietnam E-Commerce and Information Technology Agency (VECITA) under the Ministry of Industry and Trade.
The agency estimated that each shopper will spend an average of $350 per year, which means online spending will total $9.76 billion.
Revenue from online retail is expected to account for 5 percent of total nationwide revenue from sales of goods and services in 2020, up from only 2.8 percent last year, VECITA said. Last year, Vietnamese consumers spent about $4.07 billion shopping online, a jump of 37 percent from the previous year. Via e.vnexpress.net
Online marketing rapidly growing in PH
Rayner also said that last year, 20 percent of Filipinos purchased products through online channels, half of which are done via mobile devices. She also said Philippine e-commerce grew 9 percent last year, which is higher than the average global e-commerce growth of 3 percent in the same period.
She said the Philippines has a “huge opportunity for e-commerce” growth, citing that brands should tap more into online marketing to broaden market reach.
But in spite of the potential of e-commerce, the TNS research head said there are certain behaviors of Filipino customers that hamper the local e-commerce growth. Rayner said Filipinos’ inclination to buy “at the last-minute” and their “trust issues” in online transactions are challenges to the growth of e-commerce in the Philippines. Via manilatimes.net
Thai mobile e-commerce serves as Asean role model
Thailand can serve as a role model for mobile business development in Asean because of its solid economic fundamentals and the presence of top global technology firms, says a technology event management company.
“This is certainly a pivotal year for the Thai telecom industry with the arrival of fourth-generation wireless broadband services and the encouragement of online traders and investors,” said Bart Medici, managing director of Bangkok Entrepreneurs, an organiser of networking and technology conferences.
Thailand’s mobile service market has been valued at 300 billion baht ($8.6 billion) annually, with over 110 million mobile subscribers. Subscribers are expected to rise to 150 million this year, he said, citing figures reported by the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission. Via bangkokpost.com
Can Budget 2017 make Malaysia the next big digital hub?
While last year, the Malaysia budget looked to focus mostly on creating quality content, this year the focus has been largely on digital – and rightly so. Over the past year, brands across Malaysia have been embracing the digital platforms and now, going forward, Malaysia is set to introduce the world’s first digital free trade zone and digital hubs. This is according the nation’s Budget 2017 proposals announced last Friday.
While there isn’t much detail yet on the digital free trade zone, many industry experts told A+M they lauded the move spearheaded by the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC). Serm Teck Choon, president of Malaysian Digital Association (MDA) said, with increasingly more Malaysians buying things online, this initiative will surely help in boosting up the whole e-commerce sector.
“Whether you are large corporations looking to start your e-commerce initiative, or an SME which is leveraging on digital, or even a consumer who wants to buy cheaper products online – you should benefit from the incentives including tax exemptions, especially if this digital free trade zone works similarly to other free trade zones in the real world,” he said. Via marketing-interactive.com
Launch of aladdinstreet.com.sg sets new trends in e-commerce with foray into halal & premium products/services
The launch of Aladdinstreet.com.sg makes it the world’s first premium quality products and halal e-Marketplace to feature only premium quality and halal products that cater to both the B2B and B2C communities.
In just three months after its July 2016 announcement, Aladdinstreet.com.sg has identified 200 merchants and secured close to 60 merchants, of which close to half are halal-certified. Owned by Muslims and non-Muslims, these halal-friendly and halal- certified businesses range from F & B providers, vitamins, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, fashion and other services.
“There has been a growing acceptance of the health benefits for halal products even in non-Muslim countries,” says co-founder of the Aladdin Group Dato’ Dr Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor Al Masrie. “But manufacturers and producers of the halal industry can only meet 20 per cent of this demand because there is a lack of reliable marketing platforms. In fact one of the biggest importers of halal products is actually Singapore, and given the country’s good track record in governance and high standards of halal compliance, Aladdinstreet.com.sg will help these SMEs access this market to its fullest potential.” Via theindependent.sg
Asia’s e-commerce boom will continue
All reports show SE Asia is becoming a mobile-first economy for e-commerce. As economic growth continues and as consumers adopt technology, the overall region is on track to be the world’s fourth-largest economy within five years. We’re tracking new developments constantly so check in with us often or subscribe for free to get weekly updates (M-W-F) of the latest Asian e-commerce news and trends.