Malaysian firm expects RM14b e-commerce sales volume

According to a recent report, a leading payment gateway providing top online payment collection solutions within ASEAN expects a sales volume of RM14 billion this year, contributed by over 104 million transactions through its channel.

The Executive Director of the gateway operator stated that the firm expects a twofold growth in sales volume and transactions this year, thanks to the rising interest in e-commerce sector by consumers.

In 2018, the firm recorded a total of 52.45 million successful payment transactions totalling RM7 billion, versus the 28.7 million registered in the previous year.

The Executive Director noted that mobile phones have been a key catalyst for e-commerce’s growth over the past few years and businesses should look into enhancing their mobile experience and application performance.

He stated that in total, 40.8 million transactions were successfully performed over mobile devices last year. This further shows that smartphones were the preferred device among Malaysians to access the Internet.

The ED also noted that the online banking transactions had tripled against credit-card transactions in the fourth quarter of 2018, attributing to 13.8 million transactions versus 3.5 million via credit cards.

It was noted that Bank Negara Malaysia’s move to bring down the cost of online banking transactions in the last few years has definitely made online banking the preferred payment method for consumers.

PFX (financial process exchange) is also fast becoming a preferred mode of payment.

According to the firm’s data, food and beverage posted the highest sales volume growth last year versus 2017, registering 75% increase to RM44 million, followed by the marketplace, which grew 71% to RM2 billion.

Meanwhile, the ED noted that facial recognition and biometrics are expected to play significant roles in the future of e-payment. He said the technological trend should hit Malaysia soon, as its already prevalent in China, among other developed economies.

He acknowledged the general historical trend of using cash to pay for almost everything. However, now the trend is shifting towards mobile commerce. It will not take too much time for the technology of biometrics to spill over into South-East Asia.

According to the Executive Director noted that the current method of e-payment is multichannel, or multiple devices, but the future will be made omnichannel whereby all devices are connected to form Big Data and allow for seamless payment via facial recognition.

As devices get increasingly more durable and efficient, they are also becoming smaller in order to accommodate the growing rapidity of daily life and the need for portability.

The ED noted that someday it is likely that one might not even have to carry a device and our faces will be enough to buy things.

With the rise of e-wallet and e-payment, the ED noted that the question remains whether cash would remain the key payment method of trade.

In addition, with the technology that is available currently (And what is still in the processes of development), the rise of new retailers such as online-to-offline (O2O) and unmanned stores will play a part to pave way for biometric technology.

The ED added that should O2O evolve as an opportunity, business-to-business will also transform to the manufacturer- to-business-to-consumers. Moreover, this will then allow for the emergence of a direct channel between manufacturers and consumers.

According to Malaysia’s National Policy on Industry 4.0 (Industry4WRD), boosting efficiency in managing supply chains is one of its main goals.

Moving forward, Malaysia plans to enable the advancement of tech as it is increasingly propelling global manufacturing competitiveness. The Policy aims to foster a seamless and accelerated adoption of Industry 4.0 technologies, especially for SMEs.

The Policy notes that transforming the Malaysian manufacturing sector is not a short-term process, where many industries having experienced significant challenges for decades. A supportive policy environment is required over the next decade to provide businesses with stability and allow them to execute these long-term strategies.

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