Mobile commerce in Asia Pacific jumped 64% in 2016

By NG MIN SHEN

Mobile retail sales across the Asia-Pacific region rose 64% year-on-year (YoY) to US$328 billion (RM1.41 billion) in 2016, making mobile retailing the fastest growing digital channel in the region.

Euromonitor International and Retail Asia said in its recent “Retail Asia Top 500 Retailers Ranking” reported that over 50% of total digital commerce in China, Indonesia and South Korea is attributed to mobile commerce.

“We expect the region to reach US$795 billion by 2021, almost tripling North America’s leading mobile commerce market size,” the report stated.

Euromonitor International head of retailing Michelle Grant said the success of Internet and mobile retailing was attributed to the quick response to the rising demand for convenience, driven by ageing populations, the rise of smaller households, urbanisation and hyper-connected consumers.

“As shoppers seek more convenience-based offerings, retailers will meet this demand by developing methods to assist frictionless shopping, including new convenience- focused formats and enabling more purchases via Internet-connected devices,” she said.

“Digital commerce is a truly coming force, one that retailers need to include in their strategy,” Grant added.

According to the report, the top 500 retailers in Asia Pacific recorded total sales of US$940 billion in 2016.

The Retail Asia Top 500 ranking — based on global business intelligence and strategic market analysis provider Euromonitor International’s retailing data — ranks the top

retailers from 14 key economies across Asia Pacific in terms of total sales, number of outlets, sales area and sales per sq m.

While China and Japan witnessed slowing growth, South-East Asian economies per- formed well during the year under review, with many retailers in India, Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam experiencing double-digit sales growth.

Yet, Japan dominated the list of top five Asia-Pacific retailers in 2016, with AEON Group in pole position followed by Seven-Eleven Japan Co Ltd. Australia’s Woolworths Ltd and Wesfarmers Ltd took the third and fourth spots respectively, while Japan’s FamilyMart placed fifth.