Thursday, June 18, 2009

PayPal to focus more on Asia-Pacific

The global online payment-service provider PayPal aims to grow its transaction value worldwide from US$60 billion (Bt2 trillion) to between $100 billion and $120 billion in 2011.

To achieve its goal, it plans to focus more on encouraging the growth of electronic commerce in the Asia-Pacific region, which is its fastest growth market.

Mario Shilliashki, general manager of PayPal Southeast Asia and India, said that currently PayPal has 70 million active accounts worldwide from its total of 175 million accounts. Of the active accounts, around 12 million are in the region, generating around $4 billion of its online transaction value.

"Asia-Pacific is the fastest growth region for us. That growth is the key factor enabling us to achieve our 2011 target," said Shilliashki.

In a bid to encourage the growth of e-commerce and online transactions across the region, PayPal aims to increase Asian countries' total online shopping market value.

Master Card Research forecasts that Thailand's online-shopping market value will have grown from $5.9 billion in 2007 to $20 billion next year.

Shilliashki said that the three main strategies that PayPal will use in Thailand are teaming up with local partners, marketing locally, and rolling out its customer support in the Thai language.

Currently it has three main local partners: PaySbuy, the Department of Industrial Promotion and the Department of Export Promotion. The company is looking for more local partners.

Rolling out its product and marketing locally, he said, includes customising the content and language support, with the recent launch of a PayPal website in Thai last November.

Marketing campaigns will encourage Thai online merchants to use its payment-service channel.

PayPal just launched its Thai-language local customer service to fully support merchants this month, including one-to-one account management, and training and education for traders.

There are now around 15 million Internet users in Thailand, of which around 40 per cent are involved in online shopping.

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