Singapore - Courts has unveiled its plans to capitalize on the growth of e-commerce in Southeast Asia by rebuilding its online business through a partnership with premier e-commerce agency SmartOSC. Originally launched in 2012 with 7,000 products, Courts’ offering of products today has increased to 14,000.
Under these new plans, Courts will further penetrate into Singapore’s growing e-commerce market, which is estimated to reach US$6.42 billion by 2020, according to research firm Statista.
Known as a Singapore based retailer specialising in furniture and consumer electronics, from its initial establishment, Courts has seen growth throughout Southeast Asia, most notably in Malaysia and Indonesia. In April 2016, the business revamped its traditional brick and mortar stores to engage with customers more effectively – the two offline “testbeds” opened in Causeway Point, Singapore and Sri Damansara, Malaysia. As a result of that, in parallel with an expected boost in productivity from traditional retail stores, the brand now looks at radically reshaping its e-commerce business, moving towards an integrated shopping experience both in-store and online.
Stan Kim, Court's Group CIO, explained that their strategy is really about creating an omni-channel experience for customers. The limitations of the current e-commerce framework, including extending functionalities, handling the increasing amount of visitors, as well as personalising the shopping experience, do not fit into the overall commerce strategy.
“We were looking for partners who not only have technical expertise but more importantly understands how e-commerce and brick-and-mortar stores work together to create a seamless experience for modern shoppers. SmartOSC is a perfect match given their experience in building connected commerce solutions for top retailers, and their capability has been recognized by Magento as the platform’s enterprise solutions partner,” explained Stan Kim.
Built upon the Magento Enterprise 2.0, combined with innovative technologies for omni-channel, marketing automation, and content management, Courts is looking to establish a new industry-standard for mobile first and user-centric experience. A real-time single view of inventory and customer profiles is activated through integrations with ERP and retail management systems. The brand will also enhance the click and collect offering, which is currently contributing about 50% of Courts’ online sales.
The platform has also been architected to accompany and facilitate future expansion plans, ready for easier roll-out to other regional markets. Although Southeast Asia’s e-commerce is still in its infancy (relative to European and North American markets), it is expected to grow 32% year on year. The region is currently estimated to be worth $5.5 billion and expected to reach $88 billion by 2025, according to a report by Google and Singaporean sovereign wealth fund Temasek.
When asked for a statement on the partnership, Stan Kim commented “We’ve been working closely with SmartOSC to ensure an integrated and smooth transition to the new platform. We’re very excited with the current progress – SmartOSC’s depth of knowledge in e-commerce, resource scalability and innovative development has helped us realize our omni-channel potential. We cannot wait to launch this to the public.”