Paving the way for online business


  • TECH
  • Tuesday, 17 Mar 2015

Get going online: (From left) Wee Huay Neo, director for SME community and initiative, Digital Malaysia at MDeC; Hoseok Kim, chief executive officer at 11street; and Marc Woo, head of e-commerce and travel at Google Malaysia at the launch of 11street's Seller Zone in Kuala Lumpur.

If you’re a local business that’s seeking to delve into the realm of e-commerce for the first time, 11street, an online marketplace platform from Korea, is here to help you out. 

The company, who also has operations in Indonesia and Turkey, has set up a Seller Zone in Kuala Lumpur. This refers to its education and support centre that offers training, coaching and business development programmes to SMEs who are making the transition from being mere brick and mortar businesses to becoming online sellers. 

Interested parties can register for free via the company’s website to become one of its sellers. 

Once you’ve signed up, you can enjoy using the available facilities at the Seller Zone premises in Menara Nu, KL Sentral which consists of meeting rooms, computers, photo studios and more.  You can also attend any of the classes that are regularly held there to enhance your online business skills at no charge. 

The centre spans a total floor area of 9,500sqft and contains meeting and seminar rooms, computer facilities, a cafeteria equipped with WiFi and photo studios. 

“Most SMEs don’t know how to do online sales, so 11street wants to help these offline sellers get online,” says Hoseok Kim, chief executive officer at 11street. 

He also notes that Malaysian consumers still lack the element of choice when buying via e-commerce platforms. 

“Trust is very important in e-commerce. There are many fake products out there. We want to provide a trustworthy platform for consumers so they do not have to worry about fraud or security issues,” he adds. 

Besides that, he says 11street is an “open market platform”, hence it welcomes all forms of sellers, be they established brands or budding SMEs. 

“The SME segment is an untapped market and this is where growth will happen. But at the same time, we are inviting big brands to join us as this will provide consumers with more choices on our platform,” Kim explains. 

By the end of the year, 11street aims to get a total of 11,000 sellers on board its Malaysian site.

Google Malaysia and the Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC) are providing support for the Seller Zone. 

“The arrival of 11street is extremely timely,” says Marc Woo, head of e-commerce and travel at Google Malaysia. “Malaysians are extremely digitised and are ready to shop online. The nation’s Internet penetration rate is one of the highest in the region at 67% and mobile penetration is at 144%. One out of three Malaysians are already shopping online.” 

In the face of ongoing economic challenges in today’s world, Wee Huay Neo, director for SME community and initiative, Digital Malaysia at MDeC says the need for SMEs to expand their networks is even more crucial. 

“The more difficult the economic environment, the more you need to reach out to a greater catchment of customers. E-commerce is the platform that provides you with that opportunity,” she says. 

The site currently serves over 300,000 sellers and 22 million buyers worldwide. The Malaysian website will be launched in April. Visit www.11street.my to find out more.
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