MDEC’s PENJANA Initiatives Have Brought In RM896mil Sales For SMEs

Today we have over 900,000 SMEs in Malaysia, and nearly 99% of them contribute 38.3% of the country’s GDP and 66% of the country’s employment.

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit us in early 2020 and the government implemented AGC, many small and medium businesses were severely affected.

An online survey conducted by Recommend.my indicates that 60.3% of SMEs reported financial difficulties even during the CMCO enacted in June 2020.

Almost half of the SMEs remained closed during the CMCO period, as they struggled to pay employee salaries and rent premises.

48.3% experienced customer delays or order cancellations, which reduced their potential revenue.

Suddenly there was a greater urgency among SMEs to digitize their businesses.

Help accelerate digital transformation

The idea of ​​digitization is not new to SMEs. However, many companies have been forced to accelerate their digital transformation in order to stay afloat during the pandemic, and it has not been easy for everyone.

The Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) quickly stepped in to lend a hand.

He launched the PENJANA e-commerce campaign for micro and SMEs (MSMEs) and the PENJANA Shop Malaysia Online initiatives under the aegis of the PENJANA government.

Surina Shukri, CEO of MDEC, told Vulcan Post: “Since the initiation of the initiatives, more than 45,000 new MSMEs have joined the e-commerce bandwagon, with a total of 115,000 MSMEs benefiting from the e-commerce campaign. PENJANA MPME. “

Encouraged to spend for local online sellers, 7.8 million consumers nationwide benefited from the campaign’s discounts and coupons on various participating e-commerce platforms.

In total, over RM896 million in sales were also generated by local traders through these platforms.

Solve the biggest business problems

Some of the platforms involved were Fave and Grab, for example.

MDEC shared some testimonials from local businesses that benefited from the campaign, one of them being Lexis Hotel Group.

The hospitality industry suffered massive blows when international and local travel were severely restricted in March 2020.

Now that interstate travel is permitted, hotels and hospitality-related businesses depend on local consumers, but Surina noted that many Malaysians are still reluctant to travel due to the recent outbreak across the country.

This was a problem, so Lexis Hotel Group’s solution was to engage Fave to provide special promotions and vacation deals to local tourists. It worked.

“Through the PENJANA initiative to drive local consumer demand, Lexis Hotels & Resorts has seen an increase in bookings of our hotel vouchers through the Fave Malaysia platform, with guests being incentivized through cash back or direct discounts, encouraging them to secure the best travel deals. at a time when domestic travel is the only option for Malaysians, ”said Samantha Lee, Executive Assistant – President’s Office, Lexis Hotel Group.

Their hotels in Port Dickson and Penang are more attracted to locals, and they have been successful in maintaining operations and employing their local staff.

On the restaurant front, local businesses like Vanilla Crepe have successfully mitigated losses at its 23 outlets across Malaysia with the PENJANA MSME e-commerce campaign.

Grab was also a crucial player who helped restaurants like Tiga Budak Gemok and I Am Grepek Bensu stay up and running through its delivery network and contactless solutions.

The PENJANA initiatives have enabled them to offer incentives such as discounts, coupons and free shipping to increase sales and gain new customers, for example.

With 20 participating e-commerce partners collectively matching the government allocation of RM 70 million under the PENJANA MSMEs e-commerce campaign, e-commerce platforms have been instrumental in providing not only training. integration, but also vendor subsidies and sales support for entrepreneurs and MSMEs to alleviate costs such as shipping and marketing.

Surina Shukri, CEO of MDEC

There is still more to do

The above examples serve as strong indications of how adopting e-commerce will help Malaysia’s growing digital economy.

A recent study on digital maturity of small and medium-sized businesses in Asia-Pacific for 2020, jointly commissioned by technology company Cisco and business intelligence firm International Data Corporation, suggests that digitally mature SMEs could potentially add between $ 79 billion and $ 99 billion. of RM to Malaysia’s GDP by 2024.

The same study also noted that 64% of Malaysian SMEs plan to digitally transform by introducing new products and services to the market, a significant jump from 33% last year.

However, the lack of digitally skilled talent, budget and an appropriate roadmap for digital transformation are among the challenges many SMEs still face.

“For Malaysian SMEs that have yet to jump on the e-commerce bandwagon, now is the golden opportunity to expand the reach of their existing distribution channels, while capitalizing on the trend to rising demand for e-commerce, ”Surina advised.

As part of its Go-eCommerce initiative, the MDEC will continue to support the adoption of e-commerce and the digitalization of businesses through programs aimed at SMEs.

Go-eCommerce is an online entrepreneurial platform with tools like e-business readiness tool that assesses the status of your e-commerce and provides personalized solutions and tailor-made programs like eUsahawan, e-commerce and export via e-commerce.

  • You can read more about MDEC here and Go-eCommerce here.
  • You can read what we wrote about MDEC here.

Featured Image Credit: Surina Shukri, CEO of MDEC

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Jothi Venkat

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