Inside Retail Asia breaking news, supplier information, product launches and consumer campaigns within the Indonesian retail sector.

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Sephora thrives in Asia

Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy says Asia, the Middle East and North America delivered excellent performance for its Sephora, DFS business arm in 2014. The world’s largest luxury goods retailer and manufacturer said the business, in its books referred to as its Selective Retailing division, achieved record annual growth revenue of eight per cent. Profit from the division’s recurring operations reached €882 million in 2014. “Sephora had an exceptional year and continued to gain marke…

Asians embrace Valentines Day

Indonesians, Taiwanese and Singaporeans are far more likely to splurge on Valentine’s Day than shoppers in Germany or the UK, a survey reveals. Japan’s home-grown global online retailer Rakuten has surveyed 7000 people across the globe to gauge attitudes to Valentine’s Day and found that Asians embrace the concept much more than Europeans. The Rakuten Shopping Secrets survey found Indonesians (57 per cent), Taiwanese (53 per cent) and Singaporeans (45 per cent) placed top of the mult…

Indonesia set for online shopping boom

By Edward Barbour-Lacey* While currently, eCommerce only accounts for less than one per cent (worth less than US$2 billion per year) of Indonesian retail spending, analysts believe the country’s fast growing middle class and proliferation of smartphones will soon raise that share to eight per cent (worth US$8 billion) in just a few years. If that scenario were to happen, then Indonesia’s eCommerce market would be the largest in Southeast Asia. Although accurate predictions are hard …

Flash sales start-up to target Southeast Asia

Indonesia’s VIP Plaza, a fashion flash sales site, has secured funding from Yahoo Japan Capital to launch a Southeast Asian roll-out. Tesong Kim, co-founder of VIP Plaza, says the new funds will be used to strengthen the eCommerce store’s marketing activity and help VIP Plaza reach more consumers across Indonesia. VIP Plaza is looking to expand globally, starting with a brand new office in Malaysia that opened recently, and initially focussing on Southeast Asia. TechInAsia.com reports …

PE investor sells Indonesian d-store stake

UK-based CVC Capital Partners has sold a 12 per cent stake in Indonesian retail giant PT Matahari. Matahari owns hypermarkets and department stores across the nation – and is actively expanding its footprint as Indonesia’s middle class expands. CVC has declined to comment on the transactions, which came to light through regulatory filings. The company now has just two per cent of Matahari’s shares, suggesting they, too, will be offloaded in the near future. The timing of the tran…

Indonesia clamps down on liquor sales

Indonesia’s Islamic-led government is to ban the sale of alcohol from convenience stores from January 31. Trade Minister Rahmat Gobel has reportedly signed a regulation that will ban small, modern retail chains from selling beverages including beers and pre-mixed drinks with less than five per cent alcohol. The ban will apply in popular tourist hotspots like Bali. According to the Jakarta Globe newspaper, the ban will not affect supermarkets and hypermarkets, such as Carrefour. Tut…

Hooters in major Asian roll-out

Hooters of America has signed an extensive development agreement to open 30 new Hooters QSR restaurant locations throughout Southeast Asia over the next six years.

First new Matahari Hypermarket for 2015

Indonesian multi-format retailer PT Matahari Putra Prima, has opened its 108th hypermarket in Indonesia. The new store is located in Singkawang Grand Mall, one of the largest shopping centers in Singkawang. It is the company’s 10th hypermart in Kalimantan (Borneo). PT Matahari Putra Prima operates hypermart, Foodmart and Boston Health & Beauty brands across Indonesia. The opening of Singkawang Hypermart is the first for 2015, and part of a broader new store expansion plan for the …

Carrefour Indonesia adopts new POS tech

German tech company Wirecard has teamed up with an Indonesian bank to roll out new point-of-sale technology for Carrefour Indonesia. Wirecard, with its Indonesian subsidiary PT Prima Vista Solusi and Bank Mega have joined forces to support Carrefour Indonesia with innovative Point-of-Sale (POS) solution with integrated payment capability. Customers in all Indonesian Carrefour retail stores will be able to pay contactless with their NFC cards, credit cards or debit cards. The new system is …

Indonesian retail sales growth slows

Retail sales growth in Indonesia is showing further signs of slowing down. A Bank of Indonesia survey shows an annual retail growth rate of 14.1 per cent in November – well down on the October rate of 17.6 per cent, but still significantly higher than September’s 8.9 per cent. The bank surveys 650 retailers in 10 major cities each month to produce a statistic valuable for its trend reflection. The bank said it expects December’s figure to show a further decline, along with January a…

LuLu plans SE Asian money shops

LuLu Group, the Emirates-based retail group, is looking to open a network of money exchanges in southeast Asian countries. According to media reports in the Gulf, Lulu Group plans money exchanges in Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines, where it opened a liaison office late last year. The company had already announced plans to open hypermarkets in Malaysia and Indonesia and now, according to reports, Hong Kong is on its radar also. LuLu Group had earlier scheduled its first Malaysian h…

FJ Benjamin to close stores

Listed Singapore retailer FJ Benjamin says it will close some stores in Singapore and scale down others as it manages a downturn in sales. The company’s plans – of which there were no further details – were included in the first quarter financials released on New Year’s Eve. FJ Benjamin posted an improved profit despite a massive 22 per cent slump in sales. In the three months to September 30 sales totaled S$75.4 million, compared with $96 million in the same period in 2013. Gross prof…