Malaysia’s Ganesh Bangah creates first local end-to-end ecosystem aimed at transforming the influencer and live e-commerce industry.
It’s no secret that the industry giants of today were yesterday’s players who endeavoured hard at connecting the dots of their ecosystem. As such, today’s buzzwords such as “end-to-end”, “ecosystem”, “holistic approach” and the likes will prop you up your chair, snug your glasses up and take notice.
Ganesh Bangah, Founder and Executive Chairman of Commerce.Asia Ventures Sdn Bhd, Southeast Asia’s most admired comprehensive e-commerce platform providing a comprehensive range of services, has embarked on a new project called Nuffnang LIVE Commerce which aims to recreate this success with an influencer platform that is beyond just a servicing one.
With Nuffnang, Ganesh, who has already created amazement nationally with his e-commerce endeavor, is breaking Malaysian ground yet again, with a focus on shaking up the nascent but growing live e-commerce and influencer marketing landscape to leapfrog into the bustling global scene.
Earlier this year, Ganesh emerged as the substantial shareholder of Malaysian-based Netccentric Ltd (NCL), a digital media company listed on the Australian Securities Exchange. Nuffnang Sdn Bhd is Netccentric’s wholly-owned subsidiary, an established influencer and content marketing company in Malaysia.
In July this year, NCL entered into a joint venture agreement with Commerce.Asia and Docono Holdings Sdn Bhd (DHSB) to operate Nuffnang LIVE Commerce. The shareholding structure of Nuffnang LIVE Commerce thus comprise Netccentric owning a 40% equity interest, with Commerce.Asia and Docono each having 30%.
Ganesh is known by his peers as a visionary, which explains his decision to invest in Nuffnang LIVE Commerce.
“In China, live commerce is 9% of e-commerce and I expect that to mirror here (Malaysia),” Ganesh said, speaking exclusively to MARKETING Magazine.
In China, in 2018, live commerce generated over RMB100 billion (RM60 billion) through transactions on Taobao — Alibaba’s premier customer-to-customer (C2C) e-commerce marketplace in the country. A year later, the figure grew more than fourfold to RMB440 billion (RM266 billion), representing about 9% of China’s total e-commerce transactions. This included the RMB20 billion (RM12 billion) sales raked in during Singles Day 2019.
Closer to home, live commerce accounts for less than 5% of total e-commerce sales but is gaining steam, in line with the segment’s growing trend globally.
“We looked at trends across the world and realised that live commerce is a trend that’s coming up. We believe it’ll be 9% in Malaysia or maybe even more. We believe it is possible, given Facebook’s large audience,” says Ganesh.
Hence, he decided to marry their strengths while bringing the best of both worlds for both merchants and consumers.
“I already had some ideas of where the synergies were and this (his investment) is a combination of that,” Ganesh explained. “I invested in Netccentric because we (Commerce.asia) have been building the backend enabling ecosystem but one of the biggest challenges faced by merchants is actually the go-to market, essentially getting the customers.”
He then added that with Commerce.Asia’s almost end-to-end ecosystem, his idea was to further solidify and complete it by using influencer marketing and performance marketing.
How Nuffnang LIVE Commerce works
Ganesh then went on to explain exactly what Nuffnang LIVE Commerce is all about. In short, it is a live commerce enabler for Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSME) who are looking to expand their e-commerce business.
However, according to Ganesh, Nuffang LIVE Commerce aims to be more than just a servicing business; it is built to be a performance platform. Using intelligent integration of influencer, content and e-commerce know-hows, the platform is capable of hosting a client’s live stream, managing their orders, online payment and sees the process through including ensuring customers receive their order.
By positioning Nuffnang LIVE Commerce as an end-to-end live video commerce solution provider, the company holds a competitive advantage in terms of flexibility, portability, interactivity and is customizable, when compared to its competitor platforms such as Facebook Live, local e-commerce marketplaces and TV shopping.
The unique technology combined with the vast influencer platform and onboarding training, allows MSMEs to be independent and sustain on their own as they propel and scale in live e-commerce.
Training influencers to be performance centric
Today, Nuffnang 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.
Nuffnang’s current clientele and target clients are brands and SME owners who look for performance based services to justify the additional cost.
Hence, Nuffnang is determined to train its influencers to become bigger by focusing on their performance. In other words, how much they sell rather than just how many followers they have.
Ganesh explained a higher percentage of ad dollars will move towards influencer marketing once businesses see a substantially high return on ad spend.
In this light, Nuffnang recently completed its first Live Selling Masterclass, with the aim of upskilling selected influencers with live selling skills. The company had also hired a professional trainer who educated influencers on the tips and tricks of home shopping.
Nuffnang LIVE Commerce piloted its platform with a local bakery that had about 3,200 followers on Facebook. The implementation process that followed was identifying the business’s live commerce needs, matching it with the right influencer personality and also conducting training sessions for the bakery’s employees on how to use the platform.
After the live commerce session which garnered 250 viewers was conducted to sell the bakery’s products, specifically fresh cakes, the business generated more than RM 8,000 worth of sales in 30 minutes and saw a 30% increase in Facebook followers within a week. The bakery’s staff was also able to carry-out live commerce independently after attending two training sessions provided by Nuffnang.
It was a remarkable success story, and a potential baker even remarked that Nuffnang LIVE Commerce was, in his opinion, one of the world’s greatest inventions after slice bread!
The ‘secret sauce’ here is the innovative tech platform that Nuffnang LIVE Commerce runs on which connects multiple groups instantaneous –merchants, influencers and consumers – to create positive network effects. It was developed by Docono to successfully enable the automation of live streaming sessions on popular platforms such as Facebook for e-commerce transactions.
What’s important, though, is that Nuffnang LIVE Commerce has successfully brought forth strongly the strengths of all three shareholders into a single entity for the benefit of both merchants and consumers.
And for that, the ecosystem should indeed be thankful to Ganesh Bangah, once again, for breaking new grounds and seeing out his vision to become a mainstay reality for Malaysia and the Asia-Pacific region.