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Y&R launches e-commerce consultancy in SE Asia

Y&R has launched its new e-commerce strategy consultancy in partnership with Jon Sugihara, serial entrepreneur and founder of a number of companies in the US and Asia.

Most recently Mr Sugihara co-founded mobile loyalty and re-marketing platform Perx. Prior to that, he started PlayHawaii (acquired by CrowdSavings), SavvyCircle (acquired by Eyeona) and Kwiry (acquired in 2007). Mr Sugihara was also Chief Product Office at online-grocery store RedMart and KODAKIT, a Kodak subsidiary. He is currently managing partner at Elev8tion Group an innovation and product strategy consultancy. Mr Sugihara earned a B.S. in Computer Science from Johns Hopkins University.

With Southeast Asia’s FMCG and consumer goods market estimated at USD 185 billion, e-commerce is projected to grow from USD 1.1bn in 2015 to some USD 8.8 billion by 2020. And individual markets’ e-commerce growth potential, from 2015, ranges from increasing at least five-fold in Singapore to being 27 times greater in Indonesia by 2025. Averaged across six SEA countries, the region’s e-commerce worth is forecast to multiply by 15 – from USD 5.5 billion to USD 87.9 billion.

Y&R’s consultancy services will be offered to clients depending on their current stage of e-commerce development. These range from early-phase sales channel, assets and product pricing strategy; through growth marketing, marketing channel strategy and promotion strategy by sales channel; to product evaluation, rating monitoring and content strategy.

Explained Mr Sugihara, “Most brands are now seeing that e-commerce is no longer a question of ‘if’ but ‘when’, and find themselves facing different problems at various stages. Many players in Southeast Asia that are still in the early phases of their e-commerce lifecycle will face problems with search and categorization, personalisation and growth marketing. Distribution and last-mile delivery can prove difficult, and payment options are still developmental in many markets. Y&R’s consultancy model is designed to help with strategy at any point within a company’s e-commerce evolution, at whatever stage, whether brands are already online, have online compatible products or are local brands with a strong offline presence.”

Added Matthew Godfrey, President Y&R Asia, “Having started out as an old-school advertising guy, closing that loop between marketing and the path to purchase has always been something of a pipe-dream – being able to prove to clients how our work connects directly to sales. And our Y&R e-commerce consultancy helps close the loop for clients too, helping them embark and succeed on their now inevitable e-commerce journey.”