Lazada chief pursuing sustainable growth

Lazada chief pursuing sustainable growth

Mr Werapong vows to focus on boosting the customer experience.
Mr Werapong vows to focus on boosting the customer experience.

The new chief executive of Lazada Thailand has vowed to pursue sustainable growth by improving the customer experience and support Thai producers exporting their products in Asean.

Werapong Goo, who assumed the leadership role in July, stressed the company will invest cautiously following fresh funding by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, but the firm aims to strengthen its position in the country.

In August, Alibaba invested US$912.5 million in Lazada, bringing the total investment this year to almost $1.3 billion.

According to Mr Werapong, online accounts for 12-15% of the country's total retail, while online shopping makes up 46% in China.

He said Lazada has 30 million active users in Thailand, where 45-50 million people can potentially become online shoppers.

"Thailand is still among the top three markets for Lazada in Southeast Asia," Mr Werapong said.

He said Lazada will not be obsessed with competition but will focus on enhancing the customer experience to support them to buy more.

Lazada will enhance the customer experience by speeding up delivery to a range of 2-7 days countrywide and 1-2 days in Bangkok, he said.

The platform can also support virtual trial services, such as on lipsticks, and customers can pick up such products at stores, which could enhance the online-to-offline experience.

The company recently launched the LazLook feature for fashion items for customers, targeting those aged 18-35.

According to Mr Werapong, Lazada aims to help drive the digital economy in Thailand by supporting local sellers to export their products to the Asean market through Laz Go Global feature by the year-end.

The move is to help Thai vendors to access 330 million users in the region where fashion and accessories are in high demand, he said.

In the face of economic headwinds, online shoppers become more selective in buying products.

"We will continue to grow business in a sustainable way by making investment cautiously, particularly in enhancing customer experience through speedy logistics, more assortments of products and promotion campaigns," said Mr Werapong.

Lazada has 500,000 sellers, including 9,000 brands in LazMall, a brand-focused feature of Lazada.

He said Lazada earns a commission fee of 2% from sellers and 4-6% from brands and this fee will be reinvested in promotion campaigns and logistical improvements.

Mr Werapong is the first Thai chief executive of Lazada Thailand. He joined Lazada in 2019 after spending years as a consultant in the field of strategic management at Boston Consulting Group.

He was made chief of staff and head of business development at Lazada Thailand before rising to chief operating officer.

According to him, Lazada is committed to empowering its employees by allowing them to have authority to pursue and accomplish tasks.

The approach helps attract young people to the firm with the average age of its employees at 28 now. Lazada has 1,300 employees, including 600-700 in the logistics field.

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