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Here’s what you need to know today.

1. SingPost signed a partnership with Airbus Helicopters for drone delivery.

One year after a similar MOU was signed between Airbus Helicopters and the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, SingPost signed a partnership with the manufacture for drone delivery trials.

The project is called ‘Skyways’ and aimed at developing aerial drone delivery system for an urban environment like Singapore.

As the project’s logistics partner, SingPost will contribute its expertise in software and delivery system, as well as postal and ecommerce logistics.

The development is claimed to be at an advanced stage and they’re expecting the initial trial around National University of Singapore (NUS) by early 2018, followed by the deliverance of goods from a parcel station on the Singapore to ships.

Read the rest of the story here.

2. Procter & Gamble invests $100 million in a digital innovation center in Singapore.

In partnership with the Singapore Economic Development Board, US-based Procter & Gamble announced that it would invest $100 million over the next five years in digital innovation center in Singapore.

The center is the first outside of the US and will develop digital solutions for their APAC operations, spanning supply chain management, analytics, and ecommerce.

The company would also expand its partnerships with small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and startups, among other goals. The US consumer goods giant will train 40 employees in the first year to take on digital-related roles.

“We will continue to partner the industry and education institutions to equip our people with the skillsets that are needed to succeed in the digital economy,” commented S Irawan, Singapore’s Minister for Trade and Industry.

Read the rest of the story here.

3. Tencent will invest $200 million in used goods marketplace Zhuan Zhuan.

The Chinese tech giant has signed an agreement to invest $200 million in cash and additional business resources for a minority equity ownership in Zhuan Zhuan.

Zhuan Zhuan is a C2C mobile app enabling transaction of second-hand goods that operates under 58.com Inc, China’s largest online marketplace.

Under the agreement, a new entity called Zhuan Zhuan Entities will be created, into which 58.com will inject the app, along with its used goods related listings. 58.com will continue its direct traffic and other business support to the Zhuan Zhuan Entities.

The transaction is currently expected to close in the second quarter of 2017.

Tencent’s competitor, Alibaba Group has also recently launched a platform for second hand products, Xian Yu, where the company facilitating  sales of about 200,000 used goods daily.

Read the rest of the story here.

Here’s what you need to know.

1. Lazada’s 12.12 sale nets $40.5 million

Lazada Group’s Online Revolution, also known as 12.12, has again proven to be the biggest online shopping event in Southeast Asia, ringing up US$40.5 million in sales.

About 60% of the gross merchandise value (GMV) of the December 12 event came from mobile, with shoppers spending an average of 12 minutes on Lazada apps browsing deals from international and local brands and sellers.

Read the rest of the story here

 

2. Asian postal services adapt to post-mail era

With traditional mail volumes dropping dramatically, ecommerce offers hope for national postal firms in Asia if they adapt quickly enough and do battle with giants like FedEx and DHL.

Asian postal firms “are doing some very innovative things to take advantage of ecommerce”, said Brody Buhler, global managing director for post and parcel at consultancy Accenture. Japan Post has partnered with convenience stores to provide 24-hour delivery, while Pos Malaysia is boosting its warehousing, logistics and other other capabilities in a bid to become a full-service ecommerce provider.

Read the rest of the story here

 

3. Online retailer brings catwalk to Indonesia’s streets

MullenLowe Indonesia has launched a branding campaign for Sale Stock, an emerging e-commerce fashion platform. Themed “Fashion for the rest of us”, the campaign aims to democratize good quality fashion for cost-sensitive women.

A television and online campaign that is running on YouTube, Facebook, Line and Instagram is titled “Catwalk Nusantara” (‘Nusantara’ translates loosely to ‘the archipelago’ and is a way of referring to Indonesia). The campaign emphasizes the ease of shopping online at Sale Stock.

Read the rest of the story here

 

Sale Stock has been making wakes in the industry this year. Most recently, it has launched the first chatbot in Southeast Asia. Read all about it here.

Here’s what you need to know for today.

1. SingPost strengthens collaboration with Alibaba in ecommerce logistics

Approval from the Info-communications Media Development Authority (“IMDA”) has been obtained for Alibaba to increase its interest in SingPost to 14.4% from 10.2% currently. Alibaba’s further investment of S$187.1 million into SingPost is targeted to be completed by 28 February 2017.

Read the rest of the story here

 

2. Recommended reading: How did KFit manage to acquire Groupon Malaysia?

Joel Neoh (KFit founder): “With this acquisition, we have a strong base to deliver on the value proposition of pricing and discounts. We plan to build upon this foundation by adding a compelling value proposition of convenience. We see this combination as a key driver in the success of Chinese O2O companies.”

Read the rest of Neoh’s interview here

 

3. Inside Amazon Web Services’ plan to expand in Southeast Asia

The company has plans to launch in Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines next year.

“In Bangkok, even when there is the traffic jam problem, there is no culture of using data. So we are trying to educate them,” Goragot Wongpaisarnsin, Assistant General Manager of Toyota Tsusho. (AWS works with Toyota Tsusho).

Read the rest of the story here

Wrapping up for the day? Check out today’s biggest headlines first.

 

1.Ant Financial invests in Thailand’s Ascend Money as part of global expansion play

The companies said in statement that the deal would help Ascend Money grow its digital and offline payments and financial services business in Thailand, while opening doors for Ant Financial to expand into the broader Southeast Asian market.

Read the rest of the story here

 

2. SingPost launches ‘Center of Innovation’, opens ecommerce logistics hub

 The COI will deliver significant enhancements to the ecommerce logistics platform, and also roll out a new version of the Self-service Automated Machine (SAM) platform to enhance customer experience. It will also focus on robotics services.
Read the rest of the story here

 

 

3. Angel networks from 7 SE Asian countries partner for cross-border investing

The alliance is aimed to promote cross-border syndication and co-investment support, as well as intra-ASEAN investment in startups, particularly tech-based companies and high growth business.

Read the rest of the story here

Here’s what you need to know this Friday morning.

 

1.  Alibaba and SingPost strengthen ties

Singapore Post’s (SingPost) ties with Alibaba were strengthened today as the Chinese online giant’s S$86.2m investment in SingPost’s logistics subsidiary Quantium Solutions International (QSI) was completed.

Read the rest of the story here

 

2. World Bank says its easier to do business in Indonesia

The significant jump is reported to be based on improvements made in starting a business, getting electricity, registering property, getting credit, paying taxes, trading across borders and enforcing contracts.

Read the rest of the story here

 

3. Singaporean startup Stendard helps small medtech companies reach global standards

The website helps companies generate the documentation they need for the compliance process by answering a series of questions about a company’s internal procedures, staff, and products. Available on a subscription basis.

Read the rest of the story here

Here are the headlines you should know before you head out for lunch:

 

1.  B2C Ecommerce heats up in Southeast Asia

The forecast predicts retail ecommerce sales for the six countries studied will surpass $14 billion in 2016. Read the rest of the story here

 

2. Concerns linger over Singpost despite improved corporate governance

“While the new directors add to diversity and strengthen the board’s financial and legal capabilities, we think the main letdown is the lack of experience in the e-commerce or logistics business,” said CIMB. Read the rest of the story here

 

3. Alibaba backs PlaceIQ, a startup that combines location data with first-party data

Although the deal has not been disclosed by the two companies, the investment is more of a ‘strategic partnership’. Alibaba could use PlaceIQ’s technology in a variety of ways, including marketing, product recommendations and providing data for broader decision-making. The startup can determine not just whether someone’s visited a car dealership,but whether they’re actually shopping for a car, and what kinds of TV stations they’re likely to watch. Read the rest of the story here