Hong Kong-based e-commerce platform Shopline has officially expanded its operations into Malaysia by setting up an office in Kuala Lumpur.
The platform allows merchants to set up online stores, offering a wide selection of shop designs, payment gateways, and shipping options. Shopline claims to have placed more than 150,000 entrepreneurs on its platform, shipping merchandise to more than 200 million customers in 2018.
Earlier this year, Shopline raised USD 2 million from CDIB Capital Group and Alibaba Hong Kong Entrepreneurs Fund, according to an official statement.
Malaysia is the second Southeast Asian venture for Shopline. The startup has previously folded Vietnam into its network, and the company has an office in Ho Chi Min City. With its consistently growing economy, Vietnam is a promising market for the e-commerce industry, as 98% of internet users in the country made purchases online last year, according to an e-commerce report published by Nielsen.
Similarly, Malaysia is also an attractive hub for regional online commerce players. The country has 78.3% internet penetration, which is higher than its neighbors Indonesia and the Philippines. Moreover, the country’s e-commerce market is projected to reach a value of USD 3.91 billion in 2020.
Shopline also has offices in Taiwan in Shenzhen.
Unlike Indonesia, where local players dominate the e-commerce landscape, Malaysian consumers prefer to shop on regional e-commerce platforms. According to a recent report by iPrice, Lazada and Shopee are winning the Malaysian market, with 21.3 million and 19.9 million monthly web visits, respectively, in the first quarter of 2019. These figures are far above their local competitors such as Lelong, which only has 4.2 million monthly visits, and 11 Street, with 1.8 million hits per month.
In Malaysia, Shopline will offer online-to-offline (O2O) solutions to enable merchants to connect across channels. Its services include the Shopline Kiosk, which lets users sign up for membership with a mobile number or email in seconds; the Shopline Broadcast Center, which enables merchants to reach customers via Facebook Messenger, SMS, and email; and Shoplytics, an analytics dashboard that allows merchants to analyze data related to their store’s web traffic, revenue, product performance, and promotion campaign performance.
Shopline will also add a cloud-based point-of-sales (POS) system for retailers to help them manage their daily operations.