This weekly newsletter chronicles top digital themes and trends playing out in SE Asia, especially Indonesia. We will decode policy and regulatory changes affecting digital economy sectors, crunch earnings data of top players, track developments related to gig economy workers and attempt to piece together ecosystem buildouts in some of the fastest-growing, venture-backed plays. You can access the previous editions of the Vantage Point weekly posts here.
- TikTok is still a fringe player in Indonesia’s e-commerce market
- GoTo has the potential to double its customer base
- Sea’s live-streaming investments may keep TikTok at bay
- VinFast taking a less conventional route to market
TikTok is still a fringe player in Indonesia’s e-commerce market
TikTok currently has 125 million users in Indonesia and has tasted some success with TikTok Shop in the country, although its impact on existing players is still debatable, given its firm focus on health, beauty, and women’s fashion coupled with a very low average order value of around $5.
Another issue is it lacks a payment infrastructure in Indonesia at a time when other e-commerce players in the country are using it as a tool to improve customer retention, convenience, and promotions.
More importantly, digital payments allow e-commerce firms to promote other financial services to customers using their credit data.
Therefore, it is not surprising that TikTok too is seeking a payments licence in Indonesia, as it bets bigger on Southeast Asia’s largest economy amid rising scrutiny in its other major markets outside China.