After launching its Matahari Mall online shop in October, Indonesia’s Lippo Group is expanding its eCommerce activity into wholesale services.
It is set to launch Mbiz.co.id next month, targetting businesses and government institutions. It digitises the procurement process, which Lippo Digital Group CEO Adrian Suherman says translates into efficiency.
To offer its customers more choice, Mbiz is hoping to attract a wide range of vendors to join its platform as suppliers. The aim is to offer an easy alternative to cumbersome conventional procurement, where a business has to find vendors and compare them one by one, negotiate prices and record transactions manually. Mbiz wants to expedite procurement by making vendor information easily available, comparable and transparent, as well as offering flexible payments.
Meanwhile, the eCommerce site has been selling products from 12 main categories, including electronics, furniture, office supplies and packaging. Its vendors include Asus, HP, Philips, Samsung, Sony and other blue-chip companies.
Mbiz intends to start selling heavy machinery and agricultural goods as well as maintenance, repair and overhaul items for businesses and government institutions.
“If we talk about fashion in B2C business, it is going to be the clothing itself, but in B2B or B2G business, the items are yarn, loom, sewing machines, embroidery machines and fabrics,” says Mbiz co-founder Ryn Hermawan.
As many businesses have their own particular procurement systems, Mbiz uses a direct-selling strategy, giving individual presentations to companies and organising events to introduce its services. A follow-up team is available to train businesses and help them evaluate their performance.
Mbiz can also offer clients product recommendations and input on when they need to buy goods based on their historical data.
For the largely untapped government institution market, Mbiz will play the role of vendor by providing its e-catalogue to the Government Procurement Regulatory Body (LKPP). Co-founder Andrew Mawikere says the potential for the procurement of government goods and services in Indonesia last year was Rp31 trillion (US$2.36 billion) without e-tendering.
Mbiz has fewer than 100 employees and is funded by Lippo, but says it is open to foreign investment in the future. The unit is run by Brilliant E-Commerce, part of the Lippo group. Matahari Mall is run by Global Ecommerce Indonesia, in which Investama Digital Ventura holds a majority stake.