Malaysian SMEs should lead in innovation and production, says CEO
KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 12): Malaysian small and medium enterprises (SMEs) should lead in the innovation and development of local products using indigenous technologies.
In an email interview, ManagePay Marketing Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Tan Chia Wei told theedgemarkets.com that BuyMalaysia.com is a home-grown e-commerce platform that is in place to spur domestic innovation.
ManagePay Marketing is a unit of ManagePay Systems Bhd (MPay).
Tan said BuyMalaysia.com aims to represent Malaysia in the digital economy by showcasing the best Malaysian made products the nation has to offer the world through its e-marketplace.
“Our aspiration is to inspire Malaysian SMEs to continue to produce high quality products, while they focus on creating tangible yet innovative ways to connect the SMEs and their products to the world,” she said.
Tan said since 2017, BuyMalaysia has onboarded a wide range of businesses in a myriad of categories.
“From local snacks to innovative gadgets, specialty drinks to natural beauty products, local fashion brands to automotive accessories.
HK, Australia, Singapore, Brunei, India, Indonesia, UAE, UK “Their humble export efforts to date, although small in volume, have brought their merchants’ product range to Hong Kong, Australia, Singapore, Brunei, India, Indonesia, the UAE, and the UK,” she highlighted.
She said through the MPay network, the firm has developed relationships which had flourished into exciting collaborations.
Tan said some notable projects that BuyMalaysia is expected to roll out this year include a series of virtual pitching events where SMEs will present their products to a host of importers in the US, who have expressed keen interest in reselling products offered on BuyMalaysia through both digital, as well as brick and mortar channels.
“Another is a popular mother and baby fashion and accessory retail brand in Oman, keen to ODM their own fashion label and the third and most exciting is a party in the US BuyMalaysia has been in talks with to connect them to health, wellness and beauty manufacturers here in Malaysia, wanting to leverage on the potential of the herbal industry with its increasing global popularity and Malaysia being a treasure trove of some 15,000 plants with potential medicinal and wellness values.
Bahrain “The platform has also pulled in keen interest from Bahrain for tropical fruits,” she said.
Tan said BuyMalaysia takes every effort to authenticate the merchants it onboards and their products.
“The products must be made in Malaysia and adhere to internationally recognised manufacturing standards to be listed for export.
“It is not just about selling products, it’s about branding Malaysia as a place to source high-quality and innovative products,” she said.
Tan said another small-scale programme to be launched is the global Rakan BuyMalaysia program, where the e-marketplace is in the midst of appointing Malaysians abroad to be affiliates to promote products listed on BuyMalaysia to the community they now live in.
“We built a group buy solution for our future Rakans, where they can collect and track orders to the volume to keep logistics cost per unit affordable.
“This program was in fact inspired by a gripe from one of our local snack SMEs who said that although there was interest from overseas, the cost of shipping small quantities to places like the UK, Australia, and New Zealand where many Malaysians reside, limited the demand,” she said.
Tan also hinted at an announcement that is a-brewing in March.
“And it is very much to do with our belief that our focus should be on the development of local products using indigenous technologies.
“It will be a collaboration between industry (BuyMalaysia), academia, and local government to inspire our next generation to develop high-quality marketable products,” she said.