ASIA PACIFIC INTERNET GROUP (APACIG) SEES STRONG START TO 2015
As one year anniversary approaches Ooredoo and Rocket Internet joint venture shifts up a gear to drive mobile commerce in Asia
Ooredoo and Rocket Internet today announce that their joint venture, Asia Pacific Internet Group (“APACIG”), has increased in value since closing in Q3 2014 and has seen a strong start to 2015. APACIG is progressing well and growth continues to be spurred by growing consumer confidence, rising disposable income and increasing internet penetration in Southeast Asia.
In 2014 the partnership launched four new ventures (ShopWings, Printvenue, Helpling and SpaceWays) and has been successfully managing the operations of 14 companies across 15 markets in the APAC region. Key milestones include investing into online auto-classified site Carmudi’s successful $25million funding round (closed February 2015); investing into global property portal Lamudi’s $19million fundraising (closed February 2015); and, earlier in 2015, the creation of Philippine Internet Group in partnership with PLDT, the Philippines’ largest telecommunications company, to focus on online business development within the country.
Dr Nasser Marafih, Group CEO Ooredoo commented: “We are pleased with the progress our APACIG joint venture with Rocket Internet has recorded to date. eCommerce has good potential in Southeast Asia as more and more people buy goods and services online, yet as of today there remains still vastly untapped opportunities where we can play a major role.”
eCommerce is part of Ooredoo’s strategy to invest in new businesses that provide growth opportunities and develop new revenue streams. Growing smartphone penetration and limited fixed line infrastructure are reinforcing mobile as the preferred medium for eCommerce in Asia. Ooredoo is currently developing specific commercial initiatives for its operations in Indonesia and Myanmar, its main operational markets in Southeast Asia, each offering vast potential for eCommerce growth.
Dr Nasser Marafih added: “At Ooredoo we are passionate about, and a leader in, supporting people’s digital lifestyles. Through our partnership with Rocket Internet we have a significant opportunity to build the infrastructure that can meet the evolving demands of consumers, improve their mobile commerce experience and create a vibrant eCommerce marketplace.”
“The partnership with Ooredoo has been incredibly positive from the beginning. After setting up four new companies in 2014, it’s clear we have our sights set on rapid change. The recent launches in Australia, Bangladesh and Myanmar show that we’re capable of using our experience to set up new businesses in highly diverse markets. We are excited to continue our growth with new companies in the pipeline”, concluded Koen Thijssen, co-CEO APACIG.
eCommerce experienced massive growth in 2014 and to tap into this fast-growing opportunity the APACIG partnership is focused on investing in start-up entities and building online ventures in 15 markets across Asia Pacific including Singapore, Indonesia and Myanmar. The group typically invests into the following verticals: eCommerce; marketplaces; classifieds; lead generation and payments.
Existing ventures include: Daraz, a consumer goods retailer in Myanmar, Pakistan and Bangladesh; Kaymu an online marketplace in Myanmar, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal; price comparison site PricePanda in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines and Thailand; work.com.mm, an online job portal in Myanmar; and ads.com.mm, an online classified ads site in Myanmar.
The Group continues its expansion into new markets and verticals. In 2015 APACIG expects to branch-out into FinTech / mobile payment ventures as well as deepening the partnership between existing APACIG portfolio companies and Ooredoo through joint initiatives, such as pre-installation of apps onto mobile devices, secure mobile payment options, SMS blasts to support marketing efforts and mobile identity services.
The Asia Pacific Internet Group (www.apacig.com) is a joint venture of Rocket Internet and Ooredoo. The group’s network consists of 14 e-commerce and online marketplace companies, operating across 15 countries. Since it was founded in 2014, APACIG has become the leading online platform in Asia, building top internet companies in the region.
ABOUT OOREDOO GROUP
Ooredoo is a leading international communications company delivering mobile, fixed, broadband internet and corporate managed services tailored to the needs of consumers and businesses across markets in South East Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa. As a community-focused company, Ooredoo is guided by its vision of enriching people’s lives and its belief that it can stimulate human growth by leveraging communications to help people achieve their full potential. The company was named “Best Mobile Operator of the Year” at the World Communication Awards 2013.
The company reported revenues of US$9.3 billion in 2013 and had a consolidated global customer base of more than 95 million people as of 31 December 2013.
ABOUT ROCKET INTERNET
Rocket Internet is the world’s largest internet incubator. Its team has been building online companies since 1999 and has created over 100 market leading companies in 50+ countries, dozens of which have been exited successfully. Since 2007 it operates under the name of Rocket Internet. Currently, all companies in which Rocket is a shareholder employ over 25,000 people, covering all relevant developed and emerging markets. Primary focus is on building proven, transaction-based business models in the online and mobile space. Rocket Internet is headquartered in Berlin, Germany, and operates 25 international offices in five continents. For more information, visit www.rocket-internet.com.