KBank joins force with partners to promote Omni Channel business model for SMEs

Stocks and Financial Services Press Releases Tuesday April 24, 2018 15:25
Bangkok--24 Apr--KASIKORNBANK

KASIKORNBANK (KBank) teams up with the Electronic Transactions Development Agency (Public Organization) (ETDA), Google (Thailand) and LINE@ to launch the "K SME Good to Great" Program, aimed at promoting the Omni Channel business model for SMEs amid flourishing e-commerce. Apart from knowledge and in-depth advice from renowned experts, prizes worth 100,000 Baht each are also offered by the program. Application can be made at www.ksmegoodtogreat.com.

Mr. Surat Leelataviwat, KBank Executive Vice President, said competition in the retail trade sector is very high, while the operators have to face changes in technologies and consumer behaviors toward online shopping preference. SMEs depending on storefront sales have to struggle with dwindling sales and customers, and more of them have turned to use online channel. However, online trade is also confronting fierce competition, while managing a successful Omni Channel business is not a simple task, with respect to the matters of data management, inventory, payment channels and communications with consumers.

KBank has always encouraged SMEs to employ technologies in their business administration. KBank's K PLUS SHOP application has been developed to serve as financial solution that enhances efficient business operations of SMEs in the digital world, including convenient online payments and connectivity with partners with regard to the systems of accounting, logistics and social media. The K SME Good to Great Program is another attempt of KBank to upgrade business efficiency and competitiveness of SMEs.

KBank thus works with ETDA, Google (Thailand) Co., Ltd. and LINE Company (Thailand) Limited, in the launch of K SME Good to Great Program earmarked for retail business to support SME entrepreneurs to sell their products via omni-channel. The program aims to enable SMEs in the retail business to manage their sales via online and offline for enhanced efficiency, thus healthily growing their business in the new era of modern trade. The program consists of three major parts, i.e., 1. The "New Era of Modern Trade: How to Survive" seminar which will shed light on the retail business trend, how to strategically adjust business and how to use digital tools for business management; 2. Five-day in-depth training in which only 50 applicants will be shortlisted to be trained by experts; and 3) One-on-one advisory service on online marketing. Five selected businesses will each receive a 100,000 Baht cash prize as seed funding for their online marketing. KBank is hopeful that this program will help Thai retailers to efficiently finetune their business strategies and fully realize their potential to embrace a new era of modern trade.

Ms. Surangkana Wayuparb, ETDA Executive Director, said that ETDA conducts a survey on the value of e-commerce every year. In 2017, it is expected that the value of e-commerce would have grown 9.86 percent. The value of B2C e-commerce in Thailand would have reached 703 billion Baht in 2017, increasing 37.91 percent, or the highest turnover in ASEAN. The poll conducted in 2017 showed that online shopping was one of the top five most popular activities among Thai consumers, suggesting that Thais have increasingly accepted online shopping. Over the years, ETDA has promoted and supported many projects undertaken by e-commerce entrepreneurs, including the K SME Good to Great retail business project.

Ms. Napatra Charassuvichakanich, Google (Thailand) Industry Manager, said that Thai consumers have increasing relied on digital platform when it comes to shopping, from searching for information to buying merchandises. As result, retailers need to brace for this trend by expanding their customer reach by selling online and seizing business opportunities via digital channels as much as possible. Traditional retailers may have certain constraints in knowing how consumers shop for goods and services during the new 4.0 era and in carrying digital marketing, such as creating a website, which is comparable to building their own online store, or measuring business results via digital channels. The K SME Good to Great Program is aimed at building basic understanding and digital-based skills for interested retailers. The course designed by KBank is also intended to allow entrepreneurs to gain profound understanding about business expansion via digital channels, which is a prerequisite skill for them to make adjustments toward the 4.0 era.

Ms. Sakulrat Tanyongsiri, Head of LINE@, LINE Company (Thailand) Limited, said that at present, e-commerce business in Thailand grows 9-14 percent annually, showing that the consumers have begun to understand and fully adapt to the online world. The consumers feel more confident to shop via online channel without worries that they once had. The operators have to reach out to their consumers to accurately respond to their changing needs and lifestyles. Plus, they must gain an insight about their customers' lifestyles, how to communicate with them, as well as preferred choices of language or the best times to grab their attention. Three main obstacles or issues facing entrepreneurs, based on the studies, are 1) Resist to changes: Some operators want to maintain the status quo and refuse to change or accept new things, 2) Slow to adjust: They lack knowledge and understanding how to adapt, and 3) Budget constraint: Limited resources can force companies to suspend or cease their operation.

K SME Good to Great Program will provide SME operators with not only the knowledge to manage their retail business in the modern era but also the useful devices and applications to facilitate their operations, such as POSvision, Sellsuki, Zort and Shippop, which will answer to the needs of entrepreneurs in present days. It is hoped that the participants will be able to apply these technologies to propel their businesses into the future.

SME operators interested in the workshop can apply to participate in the program now. More information about the program and application is available at www.ksmegoodtogreat.com or K BIZ Contact Center, Tel. 02 888 8822.

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