Netccentric’s Nuffnang Live Commerce to capitalise on ‘live commerce’ trend

[ By New Straits Times ]

Ganesh (second right) with (from left to right) with Commerce DotAsia Ventures Sdn Bhd director Sameer Raj Kukreja, and Netccentric’s interim chief executive officer Angeline Chiam and chief technology officer Daniel Wong.

Singapore-based Netccentric Ltd (NCL) has entered into a joint venture agreement with Commerce DotAsia Ventures Sdn Bhd and Docono Holdings Sdn Bhd (DHSB) to operate a live streaming e-commerce business platform in Malaysia.

NCL in a filing to Australian stock exchange yesterday said a new company called Nuffnang Live Commerce Sdn Bhd would be established to spearhead the NCL Group’s expansion into live commerce.

This would be done through a platform developed by DHSB, while leveraging on Commerce.Asia’s e-commerce enabling ecosystem as well as NCL’s brand and influencer reach.

DHSB co-founder Daniel Wong will be assuming the role of chief technology officer at NCL where he will be spearheading technology development and automation initiatives.

The name Nuffnang stems from NCL’s wholly-owned subsidiary Nuffnang Sdn Bhd, an established influencer and content marketing company in Malaysia and throughout Southeast Asia.

Today, it has one of the largest influencer community reach in Malaysia by revenue, and has one of the most comprehensive networks of some 13,000 celebrities, personalities and content creators across all levels of society and diversity with a collective reach to more than 20 million consumers in Malaysia, Singapore and Taiwan.

NCL majority shareholder and director Ganesh Kumar Bangah said the group’s new direction represents a strategic expansion towards a platform-based strategy that is able to capitalise on the growth of the global social influencer and social commerce industry.

“With this platform strategy, we aim to connect multiple groups – including merchants, influencers and consumers – to create positive network effects,” said Ganesh.

“The beauty about this joint venture is that Nuffnang Live Commerce is set to bring forth strongly the strengths of all three shareholders into a single entity set to capitalise on a fast-growing trend in e- commerce.”

The shareholding structure of Nuffnang Live Commerce would comprise NCL owning a 40 per cent equity interest and Commerce.Asia and DHSB each having 30 per cent.

The formation of Nuffnang Live Commerce is a related-party arrangement as Ganesh is also majority shareholder and chairman of Commerce.Asia, an end-to-end e-commerce ecosystem which enables brands and businesses to sell online.

Today, Commerce.Asia has a database of 8 million small medium enterprises spread across 7 countries, coupled with 61,000 active merchants who sold more than RM1.5 billion worth of goods in 2019.

Meanwhile, DHSB is a technology developer for Bid Go Live! platform which enables the automation of live streaming sessions on popular platforms such as Facebook for e-commerce transactions.

Ganesh believes that, although the field of live commerce is still in its infancy, there stands to be tremendous growth in the years ahead.

“Live commerce represents the fusion of e-commerce and livestreaming which centres around influencers showcasing and promoting products and services to viewers,” said Ganesh.

“We expect this industry to soar in the years ahead. In 2018 alone, live commerce generated over RMB100 billion (RM60 billion) in transactions on Taobao, Alibaba’s premier consumer to consumer (C2C) ecommerce marketplace in China,” he said, adding that for Singles Day 2019, live commerce generated RMB20 billion (RM12 billion).

Nuffnang Live Commerce, upon establishment, will serve as a live commerce enabler for companies looking to expand their e-commerce business.

“Integrating our influencer, content and e-commerce know-hows, we will be providing end-to-end live video commerce solutions from live video production to payment and product fulfilment,” said Ganesh.

This platform solution is application programming interface (API) integrated with Facebook to provide seamless user interface from live streaming, automated order management, online payment and fulfilment.

“What’s more, we will also be employing artificial intelligent-based technologies to ensure automation for end-users to order and purchase.

“Our technologies combined with our largest influencer platform and onboarding training, would then empower companies to be independent and self-sustaining as they propel and scale in this fast-growing field of live commerce,” he said.