Unilever and Lazada build e-commerce cross-functional collaboration

By Natasha Spencer

- Last updated on GMT

Unilever and Lazada build e-commerce cross-functional collaboration

Related tags: Southeast asia, 2016

The duo has partnered to create an alliance to support rapid growth and overcome logistics issues in Southeast Asia.

Ambitious alliance

Personal care giant, Unilever, and Alibaba-supported Lazada Group signed an agreement on 30th March 2017 to build the e-commerce industry’s first end-to-end alliance in Southeast Asia.

Together, both leading businesses in their respective sectors aim to generate rapid growth through collaborating on category development, supply chain and fulfilment, data and marketing, social commerce and talent development.

As the pair aim to demonstrate its development in the region by 2020, Unilever and Lazada will both allocate resources to strengthen the newly-formed alliance.

“This partnership is a game changer for Lazada as it endorses our one-stop platform strategy to support the online development of top brands like Unilever,”​ commented Maximilian Bittner, CEO of Lazada Group.

Growth and logistics

Also, both companies strive to challenge existing logistical problems in Southeast Asia, which typically revolve around selling online and the associated high costs of delivery.

As the pair described Southeast Asia as “a difficult geographic landscape”​, the close relationship will seek to increase product choice, maximise educational content, decrease shipping costs and maximise the customer service experience.

Southeast Asia plans

The alliance follows an initial combined endeavour by the two companies as e-commerce destination, Lazada — a popular platform throughout APAC, with a presence in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam — launched an exclusive Unilever store on its Singapore platform.

“E-commerce is the fastest growing channel in Southeast Asia making it vital for us to find innovative ways to address the needs of our consumers, allowing them to shop when and where they want,”​ said Pier Luigi Sigismondi, President, Unilever - Southeast Asia and Australasia.

“We believe this pioneering partnership will set new standards in customer experience, supply chain and digital marketing, helping our brands reach more consumers across Southeast Asia,”​ added Luigi Sigismondi.

Three in a row

Unilever’s partnership with Lazada is the third collaboration the multinational consumer goods leader has invested in, in recent months.

Previously, we announced in December 2016, how Unilever had taken ownership of prestige hair care company, Living Proof, ​to add to its portfolio accomplishments.

Then, in September 2016, we reported how Unilever had also acquired plant-based personal care company, Seventh Generation,​ to boost their position and awareness levels within the natural beauty sector.

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