Ally Logistic Property (ALP), a logistics property developer headquartered in Taipei, is revving up expansion plans across Southeast Asia, with Malaysia and Vietnam as its primary target countries.
Founded in 2014, ALP offers smart warehousing solutions such as automated storage systems and automated guided vehicles, warehouse property management, and other logistics services. Its major clients include local and multinational brands, like fashion retailer H&M and sporting goods chain Decathlon. ALP currently operates six logistics complexes in Taiwan.
Unlike some logistics players who rent space for their logistics facilities, often over a short period of time before moving to a different location, ALP tends to own the land they operate on, allowing the firm to commit to long-term investments, co-founder & CEO Charlie Chang told KrASIA.
“How can warehousing companies invest in automation if they do not own the logistics property? Unlike our competitors, we acquire, own, and manage our property for the next 20 years or so, so we are able to invest in the technology and look at things with a long view,” he explained.
Last November, ALP made a USD 1 billion investment to develop smart warehousing solutions in Malaysia. Currently, the firm is building a 27-acre logistics park located in Bukit Raja, in the state of Selangor. The construction of the logistics park is expected to be finished by Q1 2024, according to a press release.
The firm plans to transform the region’s labor-intensive logistics supply chain with high-tech logistics facilities as well as data applications that optimize warehouse management processes, according to Chang.
“Malaysia is just the start. We want to invest in Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines. Once the Malaysia project is started, we will expand to one country every year,” said Chang, adding that the firm is set to announce its expansion plans to Vietnam in 2022.
Southeast Asia’s internet economy is primarily underpinned by its e-commerce sector, which logged a 49% increase in gross merchandise value last year, from USD 117 billion to USD 174 billion, according to a report by Google, Temasek, and Bain & Company.
The e-commerce boom has spurred logistics players in the region to build out their warehousing networks. For instance, Alibaba’s logistic arm, Cainiao Smart Logistics Network, announced in November 2021 that it is set to build its smart warehouse network in Southeast Asia for deliveries in Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore, according to a report by Retail in Asia.
An array of Southeast Asian logistics giants have also rushed in to fill the gaps, such as Thai courier unicorn Flash Express and Indonesian delivery unicorn J&T Express, which raised a USD 2.5 billion investment in November 2021 ahead of its IPO in Hong Kong.
In June, Flash Express landed USD 150 million in its extended Series D round led by SCB10X, the CVC arm of Thailand’s Siam Commercial Bank, and its Series E round, led by China-based VC Buer Capital. The investments took the firm’s total raised capital to USD 550 million.
But Chang remains unfazed by the competition. “We are not a technology company, in which the business model can be easily copied and pasted. The [expansion] process takes about two years, and nobody can build [a logistics park] the next day,” he said, adding that ALP has been profitable since its inception.