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Vietnam is one of the few landscapes in Southeast Asia that has an influx of local players where website visits are comparable to giants such as Lazada. Retail ecommerce in the country is expected to earn $10 billion revenue by 2020 and its ecommerce landscape has been developing at a growth rate of 30% a year as businesses slowly shift from offline to online, with some doing purely online businesses.

Despite key local players and promising growth rate, Vietnam’s local ecommerce websites are PR shy outside of their own country. To start the conversation, here is a list of the most downloaded shopping apps and key ecommerce players in Vietnam, on both iOS and android.

1. TheGioiDiDong (B2C)

Listed as the second leading retailer in Vietnam in 2015, TheGoiDiDong (Mobile World) specializes in selling multi-brand technology goods to consumers, such as tablets and mobile phones from a range of global brands like Apple and Samsung. Last year, the online marketplace targeted $1 billion in revenue and launched 123 mobile phone outlets offline.

Recently, it was reported that Mobile World’s 2017 revenue is expected to reach $2.83 billion. The group is the third largest retailer in Vietnam, right behind Co op Mart and Big C and the company will rely on revenue from the online marketplace until 2018.

2. Sendo (B2C) 

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Currently, the B2C marketplace sits comfortably in the top 5 most downloaded shopping apps in Vietnam for both Android and iOS. This year, Sendo collaborated with owner, IT company FTP to launch V-FTP wallet, an e-wallet platform to ease monthly bill payments and simplify ecommerce purchases.

Thanks to this added feature, Sendo predicts that online payment on its site will rise 30-40% each year compared to only 5% last year.

Currently, the website draws in 8 million visitors. Sendo’s managing director, Tran Hai Linh was included in ecommerceIQ’s SPARK 40 list as one of Southeast Asia’s notable 2016 ecommerce figures.

3. Tiki (B2C)

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Tiki is one of Vietnam’s most promising startups. This year, Tiki is valued at $44.83 million, making it one of the big boys in Vietnam ecommerce.

The company’s founder Son Tran also made ecommerceIQ’s SPARK 40.

4. Mang Xanh (C2C) 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mang Xanh is a C2C online marketplace that received approximately 22, 800 visits over the past 6 months. The site is a collective marketplace that houses products such as beauty, mother & baby and household appliances – aims to be a one-stop-shop for all things that you need.

5. Thi Thruong Si (C2C)

An online wholesale website with the majority of coverage in Vietnamese, TTS was established in 2014 with the goal to become the number 1 wholesale marketplace in Vietnam. They sell a range of products, from fashion to accessories and electronic goods.

With over 25,000 views daily and 20,000 new registrations per month, TSS is optimistic that the number will rise to 50,000 by the end of this year. The company’s goal is to become the go-to for wholesale shopping online in Vietnam.

Want to know more about the local ecommerce players in Vietnam? Check out eIQ’s data page on Vietnam here.

What is Foodpanda? 

Foodpanda is Rocket Internet’s global food delivery service, present in 22 countries, 500 cities with a strong footprint in Asia. The company has raised $318 million in funding since its inception and will now be sold to rival Delivery Hero.

The company had already shut down its Indonesian arm a few months ago and sold its branch Vietnam in 2015 after struggling to compete with local rivals.

What does Rocket Internet get for Foodpanda? 

Stock in Delivery Hero, which gives the German conglomerate a total of 37.7%. They previously paid $586 million for a 30% stock in February of last year.

If calculations are done backwards:

  1. $586 million for 30% = 19.5% million per 1%
  2. Foodpanda sold to Delivery Hero for 7.7% additional stake roughly equals $150 million
  3. The company was sold for half the price of its total $318 million funding

Rocket Internet SE said the combined business will process more than 20 million orders a month and operate in 47 countries.

What is Delivery Hero?

Delivery Hero Holding GmbH is an online food-delivery service based in Berlin, Germany. The company launched in 2011 and now operates in 33 countries internationally in Europe, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East and partners with 300,000 restaurants.

Why did they sell Foodpanda? 

According to TechCrunch source,

Foodpanda has slashed the asking price for its Indonesia operations to basically zero after more than a year of unsuccessfully trying to offload it.

The company is reevaluating its entire business across [Southeast Asia], and it has already made tentative efforts to sell in some countries. The company expanded in Asia via a series of acquisitions, which, in many cases, ironically leaves it without obvious suitors.

With more on-demand services like Go-Jek and LINE Man offering delivery services, how will the combined company fare? Tweet us with your answer @ecomIQ.

Vietnam has been chosen as the top priority market for future business expansion in Southeast Asia by 40% of US enterprises according to the recent ASEAN Business Outlook Survey released by US Chamber of Commerce.

The country has passed Indonesia, the largest market in the region, to become the first market US companies are looking to expand in across Southeast Asia. Indonesia ranked second with 38%, followed by Myanmar (34%) and Thailand (30%).

More than half of the respondents (53%) believed the ASEAN markets have become more important in terms of their companies’ worldwide revenue over the past two years. 49% expected to increase their ASEAN workforce by the end of 2016.

Expanding business in Vietnam for foreign companies

84% of respondents have a positive outlook for the country in 2016.

84% of respondents have a positive outlook for the country in 2016.

According to the survey, Vietnam has many competitive advantages for foreign companies, especially from the US, to expanding their business there. Among them are:

  • Low labor costs (64%)
  • Personal security (62%)
  • Positive sentiments towards the US (58%)
  • Stable government and political system (45%)

Nevertheless, the country still faces many problems that could hinder their growth and discourage foreign investors in the future, such as corruption (66%), lack of infrastructure (59%), legislations (55%). In addition, more than 40% of respondents said they were dissatisfied with government agencies, especially customs and tax authorities.

Among the top three industries that consider Vietnam as an attractive destination for expansion are:

  • Consumer Goods (41.9%)
  • Pharmaceutical (40%)
  • Wholesale/Retail (37.5%).

Vietnam was also voted the second market for moving investments from China into ASEAN with 17% of the vote, following Malaysia at 19%.

Until April 2016, US investment in Vietnam has reached $30.5 million, placing US at 17th in the ranking of Vietnam’s FDI partners. Top three investors in Vietnam is still held by South Korea with more than $48 billion investment; Japan, over $39 billion; and Singapore, over $36 billion.

A version of this appeared in VN Express on August 15. Read the full article here and access the full report here

Vietnam retail market ranked by AT Kearney

source: Vietnam Online

Vietnam is at 11th spot in the Global Retail Development Index (GRDI) ranking by AT Kearney and has been among the top 30 fastest emerging global retail markets since 2008. According to the study, Vietnam has low market saturation and its GDP growth is highest among Southeast Asian countries in the GRDI.

Its GDP has grown 5.2% annually since 2013, the highest among its Southeast Asian peers also ranked in the GRDI.
Export growth and a 17% increase in foreign direct investment has spurred economic growth, underpinned by Vietnam’s geographic advantage and low labour costs. This foundation led to impressive growth in 2015 in the retail sales area (22%) and in retail sales (9.5%).

Ecommerce in Vietnam is expected to grow as the use of mobile phones spreads and online shopping becomes more common. Ecommerce campaigns are ramping up, including Online Friday, held by onlinefriday.vn, which attracted 1.1 million visitors and close to 2,000 participating retailers.

From 2011 to 2015, Vietnam saw a continuous growth in retail turnover, worth $111 trillion (VND 2.47 trillion), accounting for 76.2% of the total retail and consumption value, according to a workshop discussing challenges facing the domestic retail sector in international integration held in HCM City on June 28.

Many market research companies and experts forecast that the retail market of Vietnam has great prospects for high growth in the future, driven by a population of 91.7 million with high consumption demands.

President of the Vietnam Retailers Association, Dinh Thi My Loan, underlined the challenges facing domestic retailers in international integration. Echoing Loan’s opinion on the increasing competition in the market, Nguyen Thi Thu Trang, director of the Centre for WTO and Integration of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), called for incentives to ensure the sector’s sustainable development.

For the first five months this year, Vietnam’s total retail sales and services revenue reached $63.4 billion (VND1,430 trillion), a year-on-year increase of 9.1%. Meanwhile, the purchasing power of goods retailers witnessed high growth of 9.5% in the period, amounting to $86 billion (VND 1,920 trillion), accounting for two-thirds of the total retail sales and services revenue.

A version of this appeared in Nation Multimedia on June 30. Read the full article here.

vietnam-internet, high speed internet in Vietnam

Source: blogs.wsj.com

Internet connection speeds are expected to slow to a painful pace until June 27 as cable system maintenance will become the bane of the lives of netizens in Vietnam. The Asia America Gateway (AAG) cable is a 20, 000 kilometer-long submarine communications system which crosses the Pacific Ocean via Guam and Hawaii.

The AAG connects Vietnam to the US and will be under maintenance in order to 19x high speed internet in Vietnam by the end of the year.

Three other international cable system connect Vietnam to the www but AAG has the biggest capacity out of the four. Routine issues plague the country’s internet users, as the system broke twice in 2014, and three times in 2015. Officials have blamed everything from sabotage to poor quality materials for the cable’s inconsistency. It has reached a point where hungry sharks chomping on the cable, mistaking it for food, has become an inside joke among local netizens.

Due to the problems, Vietnamese telecommunications firms and government agencies are building new cables to ensure a more dependable connection reports Saigoneer.

The Asia Pacific Gateway, which will run at 54 terabytes per second over 10,400 kilometers between Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia, Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, South Korea and Hong Kong is expected to be in operation this year.

54 terabytes is a huge step up from the AAG’s current 2.88 terabytes for high speed internet in Vietnam. Another cable, the 25,000 kilometer Asia Africa Euro 1, is also planned to be put to use this year. The increase in web speed will hopefully push internet adoption for the country’s  citizens. Vietnam was ranked 99th globally for internet speed in 2015.

A version of this appeared in Techwire Asia on June 21. Read full article here.

Vietnam's Advantage In European Trade Deal

Share of total EU-Asean Trade in 2015. Vietnam following behind Singapore, Source: Bloomberg.com

Vietnam may continue to take market share of the European Union trade from other Southeast Asian countries this year. The country accounted for 19.1 percent of the $227 billion (201.4 billion euros) in total trade between the EU and ASEAN nations last year, an increase from 15.8 percent in 2014 and could increase again 2016.

The country’s market growth combined with the finalization of the free trade pact indicates a more dynamic trade relationship in the future, according to the EU.

Vietnam has been steadily growing since 2014 when it overtook other ASEAN countries as the United States’ biggest exporter leaving traditional manufacturing hubs behind.

Vietnam was also able to capitalize on shifting production patterns in Asia as labor costs in China rose.

The ability to capitalize production led to Samsung Electronics Co.’s investment, it now assembles and exports smartphones from Vietnam. Several Vietnamese supply chain companies have now joined forces with the Vietnamese arm of Samsung. 

Although Singapore is still the EU’s biggest partner in Southeast Asia, it’s market share has dropped along with Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia who lost market share to Vietnam. Vietnam’s makes a very appealing trade partner with the EU by exporting electronic products, coffee and clothes. It is now the second country in ASEAN after Singapore that the EU has signed a free trade pact with.

Vietnam’s rise as a key player in overseas trade

The EU has begun to target Vietnam and Singapore in a new business initiative aimed at giving European SMEs more exposure and opportunities in Southeast Asia. This means that countries such as Thailand and Indonesia risk being completely overtaken by Vietnam, as the country has managed to capitalize on many advantages. This will provide Vietnam with international growth potential, whether through trade or online.

As Thailand and Malaysia were enjoying its traditional manufacturing perks, Vietnam was struggling to catch up, but now it seems that the country is benefiting from slower initial growth. Samsung’s investment made a significant contribution, and now Vietnam is on track to becoming a key player in trade with the European Union.

A version of this appeared in Bloomberg Technology on June 16. Read the full article here.