The digital economy is booming in SE Asia

A report called E-Conomy SEA 2018 by Google and Temasek about ride hailing apps, online media, online travel and e-commerce makes in SE Asia has some interesting facts and predictions:

  • 350m SEA digital consumers in 2018 in a $72Bn E-Conomy, expected to reach $240bn by 2025
  • Indonesia’s e-commerce sector dominates the SEA region at $27bn in value; Vietnam has the largest e-commerce share of total GDP at 4%
  • 41% of travel is booked online now, due to rise to 57% by 2025
  • Online media – gaming, ads, gambling and subscription music & video is growing by 24% p.a. in SE Asia
  • Ride hailing and food delivery are with 26% growth with Indonesia the largest and fastest growing
  • VC funding is booming - 2,000+ internet companies got funding of over $7 bn over 3 years (record $1.4 bn in 2018)
  • Uniform companies include Bukalapak, Lazarda, Go-Jeck, Grab, Tokopedia Razer, VNG, Traveloka. Only Lazarda has been through an exit (trade sale to Alibaba)
  • Fintech is attracting a great deal of new interest; Medtech, digital education and social commerce will grow too
  • Singapore HQ and Indonesian companies got the most investments
  • Improvements: Mobile data costs falling, consumer trust growing, skilled talent pool bigger
  • Challenges: logistics still hard, disparate payment systems

For everyone involved there is massive excitement and the hope that such a huge sectoral growth can buoy SEA economies for some years.