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Brands drawn to PHL by e-commerce growth

THE thriving e-commerce market is leading more international fashion and sports brands to expand in the Philippines, according to Zalora Group, a Singapore-based fashion and lifestyle e-commerce platform.

“The Philippines remains a rapidly growing e-commerce market,” Zalora Group Regional Director of Platform Services Matej Urban told BusinessWorld in an e-mail.

“Compared to advanced markets like China and the US, the country still has a lot of potential to grow, with global brands entering and scaling in the market, as well as local brands evolving into regional brands through Zalora,” he said.

Mr. Urban said that more brands are looking into entering the Philippines, pushing e-commerce platforms such as Zalora to in turn scale their platform services.

“Today, we are working with top global fashion and sports brands to enable their entry into and operations within the Philippines,” he said.

“We see growing demand from brands to have a presence in the Philippine market, and our fulfillment and operations services will continue to scale in this market,” he added.

According to a report by Google, Temasek Holdings and Bain & Co., the Philippine digital economy is expected to grow to between $80 billion and $150 billion in gross merchandise value by 2030.

“While the macroeconomic situation will influence the growth of brands and the e-commerce market in the Philippines and the wider Southeast Asian market, Zalora is equipped to scale its platform services at any time and make continuous improvements in its technology and processes, especially with the help of artificial intelligence,” Mr. Urban said.

Zalora said that business-to-business platform services and e-commerce solutions will be the company’s focus areas for expansion, calling these segments bright spots in Southeast Asia despite current macroeconomic conditions.

“Platform services are a key growth driver across our Southeast Asian markets. Notably in the Philippines, we’ve established the country’s largest e-fulfilment center exclusively for fashion e-commerce, situated in Muntinlupa City and inaugurated in 2020,” Mr. Urban said.

“At present, the center boasts a warehouse storage capacity of 1.8 million items, accompanied by 10,000 square meters of mezzanine storage space, with plans for future expansion,” he added.

Zalora has three fulfillment centers across Southeast Asia and has a customer base of approximately 8.3 million in Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Taiwan and the Philippines. — Justine Irish D. Tabile