On April 13, the Singapore Business Federation hosted an insightful seminar titled “Unlocking Opportunities in Cambodia’s Growing Consumer Goods and Services Sector” at the SBF Seminar Room. The event, aimed at business owners, entrepreneurs, and marketing professionals, highlighted the burgeoning opportunities in the Cambodian market, and drew a crowd of 150 attendees.
The seminar provided an in-depth look into the rapidly growing consumer sector in Cambodia, a market propelled by a young population, political stability, and a rising middle class with increased purchasing power. The speakers for the day included industry professionals who shed light on various aspects of doing business in Cambodia.
Ms. Tan Sock Joo, the Director SEAPAC, Singapore Business Federation, set the stage with a warm welcome note. The agenda then moved to presentations from Mr. Liow Yee Kai, a Senior Consultant from DFDL, who provided valuable insights into the business, tax, and regulatory landscape of Cambodia; Mr. Sopheap, the Head of Research & Development at Philip Bank, who offered an overview of the country’s consumer market; and Mr. Prince Yeow, a Business Advisor from SME Centre @ SMF, who discussed government assistance schemes available for businesses seeking to go global.
However, the highlight of the seminar was undoubtedly the insightful presentation by Mr. Bernard Teo, Founder, and CEO of YouAdMe, who kicked off his talk with a light-hearted selfie to demonstrate the integral role of social media in our lives. Having launched his social commerce platform, YouAdMe, in Cambodia almost five years ago in 2018, Bernard is well-positioned to speak on the influence of social media in this emerging Southeast Asian market. With the majority of the Cambodian population being youths, he noted that social media is more than a platform for sharing content; it is a primary tool for communication and commerce, and plays a pivotal role in shaping consumer behaviour.
In a unique observation, Bernard highlighted that Cambodians, in a marked departure from traditional markets where e-commerce reigns supreme, prefer to buy products online from their social networks through social media. Drawing on YouAdMe’s expertise in the Cambodian market, he proposed that Singapore businesses could effectively increase their brand presence by leveraging affiliate channels to launch their products and services. As social commerce platform connecting brands and businesses with local affiliates to promote and sell to their vast network of followers, YouAdMe has first-hand knowledge of this strategy’s efficacy in enhancing market penetration and brand recognition.
Following the presentations, a half-hour networking session provided an opportunity for attendees to connect, exchange ideas, and foster potential partnerships. In the weeks since the event, there has been an encouraging surge in business decisions and initiatives directly influenced by the seminar.
The insights shared during the seminar has inspired businesses to explore the burgeoning market of Cambodia. As Mr. Bernard Teo pointed out, social media plays a significant role in the Cambodian market, and businesses are now applying the actionable strategies discussed during the seminar in their strategies to explore and make their mark in Cambodia’s consumer goods and services sector.