Top Fashion Retailers in Southeast Asia
As markets around the world continue to be impacted by the pandemic, Southeast Asia thrives.
Sales have plummeted in the UK and US, but international sales increased by significant margins for Asos. Meanwhile, e-commerce in the US got a major boost from cross-border trade, lifted by 42% from last year.
In other words, the emerging market presents expansion opportunities for global fashion retailers.
As a leading figure in the online landscape, the Asia Pacific region houses some of the fastest-growing markets for e-commerce, namely Southeast Asia.
E-commerce in Southeast Asia is projected to surpass US$150 billion by 2025, a 400% increase from 2019. Digitally mature countries in Southeast Asia and higher levels of e-commerce adoption have captured the attention of global brands.
However, brands must capture the local nuances to succeed. After all, local key fashion retailers in Southeast Asia are masters at navigating this landscape.
The Key Fashion Retailers in Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia plays host to a competitive retail landscape, home to key retailers with extended presence across multiple countries.
Local small-medium enterprises (SMEs), a growing pool of independent retailers and fashion marketplaces mushrooming in the region, are tell-tale signs of a rapidly developing market.
Here are the top fashion retailers and marketplaces in Southeast Asia to keep your eye on.
Founded in Singapore, Love, Bonito is a digital native brand that made its start as a blog shop – prior to the e-commerce boom in Southeast Asia. It has since expanded its foothold throughout SEA, namely in Malaysia, Indonesia and Cambodia.
Love, Bonito’s unique proposition is a localised approach. It pushes its ‘Designed for an Asian fit’ philosophy to draw in local consumers – who struggle with limited international sizes that are better suited for Western consumers.
The brand also opened several brick-and-mortar stores to boost omnichannel capabilities. It provides a holistic experience to its customers with services like click-and-collect.
With a focused assortment geared towards womenswear, Love, Bonito boasts the strongest sell-out rate at 72%. Key categories that contribute to its success include bags, shoes and dresses.
Zalora is the largest fashion e-tailer in Southeast Asia. A multi-label marketplace, the retailer currently lists over 4,250 brands on its platform, ranging from established international labels to smaller local favourites.
With operations across seven countries in the region, Zalora has 2 million customers and receives 50 million average site visits monthly.
While Zalora delivers variety, it sets itself apart by tailoring its assortment to each country. The marketplace curates its assortment by including categories and consumer segments that exhibit strong demand locally.
Zalora also owns private labels that are listed on its platform, spanning categories such as basics and modest wear.
Zilingo is an e-commerce platform that lists products on its site for fashion businesses to sell to consumers and charges a commission fee for orders. Currently, Zilingo lists upwards of 1,400 brands on its platform, focusing mostly on small-scale fashion brands in Southeast Asia.
Zilingo provides great exposure to merchants on its platform with 5 million monthly visitors across six countries.
On top of this, Zilingo facilitates quick scaling with tools and software ranging from analytics, management, automated logistics and payment systems for merchants to efficiently process orders.
With numerous brands available, Zilingo has a broad assortment and a more balanced gender mix than the rest.
On the premium end of the spectrum, Mimpikita enjoys an above-average sell-out rate with a $53 median price – a steep amount for a largely developing region.
The Malaysian independent retailer is a modest wear specialist and a popular choice for Eid celebrations, an event that accounts for 30% of annual modest wear sales.
Mimpikita drives sales at premium prices, delivering value to its customers that love its quality and niche designs.
Its success indicates Malaysian consumers are willing to spend on progressive designs and superior quality, as long as there’s value.
Logo Jeans is part of Logo De Corps, a leading fashion retail group in the Indonesian casual fashion market. As Logo De Corps’s womenswear brand, Logo Jeans’s assortment is mainly customised to casual wear, rounded off with several semi-formal options.
Logo Jeans delivers demand at accessible prices for Indonesian consumers, with a median price of $12. This indicates consumers in Indonesia are more price-sensitive – and will gravitate towards the value segment for their retail needs.
With this strategy, the brand achieved the highest sell-out rate on this list at 87%.
Identify Key Players and Potential Competitors Before Expansion
Before expanding into a new market, brands need to understand potential opportunities and threats. By doing so, they can better understand local consumer preferences and behaviours.
As demonstrated by the top fashion retailers in Southeast Asia, a localised approach is crucial to align with the cultural nuances of this region, which can vary greatly by country.
Consumer behaviour and cultural influences are impactful on Southeast Asian fashion trends.
Fashion market insights improves that understanding with an in-depth view of the brand and retailers’ positioning and performance, validated with e-commerce data.
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