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Here’s what you should know today.

1. New Jakarta co-working space links government with startups

EV Hive and Jakarta’s Smart City program have launched a joint co-working space in the capital. The space, called JSCHive, will serve as a bridge between city government stakeholders and Jakarta’s burgeoning startup scene.

Jakarta Smart City is a government-backed program that bundles a number of initiatives, like open data and citizen journalism. It links up with applications like Qlue and Waze to share real-time data on traffic, emergencies, and other useful information for citizens.

“We noticed there’s not enough opportunity for startups to learn about government policies and interact with us,” said Dian Ekowati, head of communication, information technology, and statistics of the provincial government of Jakarta. It will be the bridge between the city government and startups.

Read the rest of the story here.

 

2. It’s Pinterest vs. Amazon for the future of online fashion

Pinterest and Amazon are on a collision course. On the face of it, a social media company facing off with an ecommerce giant might seem odd. But Pinterest, which appears to be struggling to justify its $12.3 billion valuation, is anxious not to be viewed as a social media company.

The platform touts two billion monthly searches and 10 billion daily “personalized recommendations.” In the 2017 edition of her influential Internet Trends report, Mary Meeker highlighted Pinterest “as the best place to browse for products to buy, when compared to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat,” as summarized by Pinterest itself.

Amazon has historically struggled with fashion, but if users are willing to adopt Echo Look, the company will have direct visibility into what its users wear on a daily basis, including items they purchased elsewhere.

Who will win? Will there even be one winner? Betting on Amazon usually pays off, and that seems especially likely when you compare Pinterest’s 175 million monthly active users with Amazon’s estimated 80 million Prime members — Pinterest would need to get almost half of its users to start buying things through its service in order to even approach parity.

Read the rest of the story here.

 

3. eBay launches price matching on more than 50K items

EBay announced it will match prices against its online competitors on more than 50,000 items for U.S. buyers.

To be eligible, an item must be available on Amazon.com, BestBuy.com, Walmart.com, HomeDepot.com, Target.com, Sears.com, Wayfair.com or Jet.com. Products must also be new and unopened in retail packaging in the eBay Deals inventory.

n addition to this new price-match scheme, eBay has instituted a slew of recent changes to regain market share, including a more discovery-based home page, updates to its mobile app, a new authentication program to help protect buyers from purchases of fakes

We just think this is a way to stick our competitive advantage right out there and have no questions about why people shop on eBay and why they should,” said CEO Doug Wenig.

Read the rest of the story here.

This is what you should know today.

1. FedEx to boost ecommerce operations in Asia

FedEx will expand its global ecommerce business in an effort to compete for the growing number of packages shipped to consumers from China and Japan.

The company acquired Bongo International, a company that helps shoppers purchase goods from foreign retailers by automatically adjusting currencies and shipping costs, and is re-branding the business as FedEx CrossBorder.

Read the rest of the story here.

 

2. Warren Buffett just dropped Walmart, buys airline stock

The sale, which leaves Buffett with nearly no shares in Walmart, comes as America’s largest traditional retailer rushes to catch up to Amazon and other online competitors.

Amazon’s market value is now $356 billion, compared with Walmart’s $298 billion. Last year, Buffett acknowledged that traditional brick and mortar retailers are struggling to compete with the online giant.

“It is a big, big force and it has already disrupted plenty of people and it will disrupt more,” Buffett said at his annual shareholders’ meeting in 2016.

Read the rest of the story here.

 

3. Unilever just launched its own co-working space in Singapore

Where is it? The 22,000-square-foot space is located at Unilever’s regional headquarters in Singapore’s Mapletree Business City area.

What’s the goal? The space is open to startups that have a product in their hands, but it will focus on companies that work with marketing and ad tech, enterprise tech, products and ingredients, social impact, and new business models.

Who is Unilever partnering up with? For its creation and running, Unilever has partnered with Padang & Co, a Singapore-based startup that helps connect businesses to corporates and the government through events, workshops, hackathons, and more.

Read the rest of the story here.

4. Community Chatter: Walmart’s ecommerce regret

Source: Paul Srivorakul (aCommerce Group CEO)’s Facebook

True Corporation, one of Thailand’s biggest mobile operators, unveiled its 200,000-square-metre Digital Park project yesterday, reportedly worth $500 million (20 billion THB), reports The Bangkok Post.

The planned facility also aims to foster the development of the country’s digital economy, with support for digital innovations and tech startups. The park will be located on Sukhumvit 101, and is currently under construction, expected to be commercially launched in mid 2018, according to True CEO, Supachai Cheravanont.

True Corp will ask the government to provide special tax incentives to foreign investors who will be setting up offices at the park. 

The project will feature a vast co-working space in an open air green area, offices and data centers. It will also include broadband and advanced 4G network, catering to big and small companies, universities and research institutions.

As reported by Tech in Asia, True Corp has made big investments in the country’s tech scene. Apart from the launch of the digital park, True has also launched a startup accelerator program, working closely with Silicon Valley VC firm 500 Startups to incubate young entrepreneurs and projects.

Thailand’s tech scene is relatively young and is often overlooked in favor of Singapore and Indonesia. However, True’s big investment into a ‘digital park’ may be a positive indication of the future landscape of Thailand ecommerce.

Versions of this appeared in Bangkok Post and Tech In Asia on August 19. Read the full versions here and here.