Spoken about in hushed tones in the boardrooms of retailers, the ecommerce giant is definitely coming to Southeast Asia via launch of Amazon Singapore and to Australia with Amazon Australia. Amazon has not officially confirmed those plans, but both of these are expected to happen in 2017.
Many regions and countries used to be too small for Amazon to consider investing. However with the rise of smartphones, ecommerce is growing rapidly in most countries. This is changing Amazon plans as it allows broader reach.
Amazon plans to launch in Australia in September 2017. It was initially planned to launch in March 2016, but the date was pushed back 6 months to allow a greater selection of products. And to include Amazon Fresh out of the gate. While Amazon already has a portal in Australia, it only offers books, Kindle readers, Fire tablets and related digital downloads.
Amazon plans to enter Southeast Asia with Singapore launch in Q1 2017. With Singapore’s Internet penetration rate in 2014 among the highest in Asia at 82%, according to World Bank data, e-commerce has taken off in a big way there. In April 2016 Alibaba invested $1 billion into Southeast Asia e-commerce platform Lazada.
There hasn’t been any mention of if those launches will include a marketplace, but we expect them to have it. Amazon has been doing a great job in India thanks both to their investments and to the quickly growing list of marketplace sellers. There are a lot of sellers on Amazon.com from both Singapore and Australia already, so the potential for a marketplace is there.
This means new opportunities from marketplace sellers. As leading marketplaces get saturated, joining a fresh Amazon marketplace will mean great opportunities.