Wednesday, February 21, 2018

News Article: Google and HKTV to wake up Hong Kong's e-commerce 'wasteland'

This is a supplemental article which I came across recently that "follows up" the 2 articles I posted last month about HKTVmall and Ricky Wong's new marketing project (announced via press conference back in January).  This article says essentially the same thing as those other 2, except in English (good, so don't have to translate, lol) and also talks about the Google connection, which neither of the other articles (in Chinese) had mentioned.

So it looks like Ricky Wong's focus will truly be on expanding HKTVmall rather than television production.  Of course, I don't blame him for what comes down to "giving up" on the HK television industry...I mean, it's a pretty big deal to partner up with a major company like Google and seeing that HKTV is essentially a "pioneer" for e-commerce in HK with the potential to expand across Asia, it makes sense to focus on a business that makes good money and has a bright future.

By the way, there is some major HK television industry news that came out this past week which could affect the issuance of licenses in the future and also shake up the future TV landscape pretty significantly (I'll post the article up on that when I get a chance)...that news coupled with HKTVmall's obvious better success in the e-commerce realm, sounds like Ricky Wong chose the right path this time around...


Google and HKTV to wake up Hong Kong's e-commerce 'wasteland'

Source:  Nikkei Asian Review

HONG KONG -- Hong Kong has long been a shoppers' paradise, a densely packed city with an endless variety of shops. Ironically, perhaps, this has made it hard for online retailers to gain a foothold, earning the territory a reputation as a wasteland for e-commerce.
But things are changing. Smartphone-toting young people are moving online in search of deals, bringing life to the online retail market. In response, Hong Kong Television Network, the largest e-commerce player in the territory, has joined hands with Google to help sellers break into the business.
The partners have begun a program that offers a relatively inexpensive way to put one's wares online. For a fee of 100,000 Hong Kong dollars ($12,700) to Google, retailers can open an online shop on HKTV Mall, a web shopping portal. For the first year, sellers are exempt from sales commissions, as well as having annual membership fees of about 6,000 HKD ($768) and deposits of some 5,000 HKD waived.
This frees up time and money for web retailers looking to open shops on the mall, and gives them access to Google tools that let them track and analyze shoppers' viewing and purchasing histories, helping them raise sales and profits.
HKTV has also started a marketing support program for people new to e-commerce. The Base, located in the company's Multimedia and Ecommerce Centre in the Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate, offers work spaces, equipment and seminars for new and would-be online entrepreneurs.
The Base was once a studio for shooting TV dramas. The former studio's recording equipment and facilities are available for free. They can be used to produce promotional videos for goods sold online, for instance. In addition to participants in the company's e-commerce startup program, popular YouTubers and social media stars with a certain number of followers can use The Base for free.
Nearly 200 people attended a recent event organized by HKTV to introduce its e-retail support program. Speaking at the event, Chairman Ricky Wong Wai-kay said the future of Hong Kong will be determined by young consumers. The telecom and media mogul added he wants to learn new ideas about e-commerce and digital media from young people.
One attendee welcomed the initiative, saying opening a physical store is a big financial challenge because of soaring rents in Hong Kong. Wong is popular among young residents as a business whiz with a flair for spotting and riding new trends.
In the 1990s, Wong elbowed his way into the market for fixed-line telephone service in the territory, which was then dominated by big conglomerates, triggering a price war.
In 2012, he renamed his business HKTV to emphasize his foray into broadcast TV. But the Hong Kong government refused to grant a license to the outspoken tycoon, fretting over his penchant for controversy.

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