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Marketing Featured APAC

beIN Asia Pacific extends digital media remit with M&C Saatchi Performance

Singapore – Multi-platform media company beIN Asia Pacific has extended its digital media remit with global digital media agency M&C Saatchi Performance.

beIN Asia Pacific offers a line-up of live sporting events through its premium sports brand, beIN Sports, and serves great coverage, news, and analysis of the top leagues and competitions, as well as exclusive content globally.

The extension, which will run until April 2022, comes after one year of successful partnership, where M&C Saatchi Performance was responsible for leading the digital media planning, buying, strategy, and analytics for beIN’s streaming service, beIN Sports Connect. The agency has also been handling its branding and performance campaigns. 

In addition to the markets currently managed by M&C Saatchi Performance, which are Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, and Malaysia, the new contract will expand to include the scope to Hong Kong as well.

beIN Asia Pacific’s Head of Marketing and Communications Magdalene Ng commented that they are thrilled to continue working with the team at M&C Saatchi Performance. 

“Looking ahead, we plan to consolidate our positioning as the leading sports streaming platform in the region. We’re confident that the integrated marketing approach adopted by M&C Saatchi Performance will help us communicate the great value offered by our platform and ultimately win market share,” said Ng.

Meanwhile, Melissa Yik, the account director at M&C Saatchi Performance, commented that over the past year, digital adoption has increased rapidly with larger audiences shifting online to watch their favorite sports competitions. 

“It has been a real pleasure to work with beIN Sports to leverage this unique momentum. We take great pride in having grown the company’s subscriber base in Southeast Asia and look forward to a long working relationship with beIN in the region,” said Yik.

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SME Featured APAC

Visa unveils five APAC start-ups part of inaugural accelerator program in the region

Singapore – Global financial services company Visa has officially announced the five start-ups it has selected in the Asia Pacific region to be part of its first-ever s accelerator program in the region. They are Brankas, Curlec, DigitSecure, ModusBox and Open. 

It should be recalled that Visa had announced last December 2020 the start of the application process for the Visa Accelerator Program, which is designed for start-ups that have built a consumer base in their home country, and are ready to enter new geographical and consumer regions. 

Speaking about the announcement back then, Dan Wolbert, Visa country manager for the Philippines & Guam stated, “What’s most important to Visa is how we can support those solutions getting elevated to a stage where in a few months’ time, they could be pitched as a commercial deal to a leading bank, retailer or technology company in the region. A big differentiator for the Visa Accelerator Program is our concentration on a small number of startups that are truly ready to unlock that next level.”

Brankas is a fintech company that provides financial software and solutions, will leverage the open banking and open data environment to create new payment and data-led experiences. Meanwhile, Curlec, a subscription management platform and ModusBox, an open source platform for real-time payments, will develop new ways to pay and be paid digitally to help drive financial inclusion for more consumers and businesses

Open, a neo-banking platform for small businesses, and DigitSecure, an omnichannel payments acceptance platform, will find new ways to support small businesses in managing and streamlining their operations digitally as they adapt to changing technology demands.

“Hundreds of startups came forward with outstanding ideas for new and enhanced commerce experiences, but the five participants we’ve selected truly stood out. We’re excited to work with each of the startups in our first cohort to bring their concepts to life and expand their businesses into new markets across the region,” said Chris Clark, regional president for Asia Pacific at Visa.

Over the next four to six months, the startups will focus on creating defined commercial opportunities to collaborate on new payment solutions with Visa and its extensive network of bank and merchant partners. A key goal for the accelerator program is to support startups that have launched successful solutions in their home markets as they plan their next stage of growth.

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Technology Featured APAC

ADA launches new end-to-end e-commerce solution in APAC

Singapore – Data and AI company ADA has announced a new business line in APAC that combines data-driven marketing strategies with end-to-end e-commerce solutions. 

The service is aimed at clients seeking comprehensive solutions to drive traffic, manage customer experience, optimize conversions throughout the funnel, and create engaging content on digital marketplaces as well as owned e-commerce sites.

“E-commerce is a strategic priority for ADA and our clients as businesses emerge from the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic. We’re excited to be expanding our footprint by bringing our unique heritage in data-driven marketing to empower the next generation of e-commerce champions,” said Srinivas Gattamneni, chief executive officer at ADA.

Anurag Gupta, chief operating officer and chief of agency at ADA explained that through XACT, ADA’s proprietary data management platform, and with the help also from first-party customer data, a global luxury skincare brand has adapted itself from an offline selling platform to e-commerce.

“The resulting campaigns far exceeded targets, with 490% growth achieved in e-commerce monthly sales versus pre-pandemic, 275% growth versus promotional months and 24.5% return on ad spend,” Gupta added.

ADA had noted a report from Google, Temasek and Bain & Co. showing that the e-commerce market in Southeast Asia continues to surge as COVID-19 accelerated online purchases, with gross merchandise value expected to jump to US$172B by 2025.

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Platforms Featured APAC

Context matters on ad perception among APAC consumers: report

Jakarta, Indonesia – A large majority of consumers across Asia Pacific are receptive to contextually relevant ads, according to a new report by digital ad verification Integral Ad Science (IAS).

According to the report, 96% of consumers in Indonesia, 91% in Singapore, 86% consumers in Australia, and 75% in Japan prefer digital ads to appear alongside relevant content. Consumers value seeing ads that are related to the topics or articles they’re consuming online. Relevant ads are not only more memorable, but also more likely to foster a favorable consumer opinion toward the brand, noted the report. 

Furthermore, consumers don’t just simply prefer contextual relevance; their perception of an ad is also impacted by it. Roughly 9 out of 10 consumers in Singapore and Indonesia and more than 7 out of 10 in Australia and Japan say their perception of an online ad is impacted by the surrounding content on the page.

Consumers in APAC tend to prefer contextual relevance of the ad be present across all verticals. Across the board, consumers paired the ads they prefer with articles categorized in the same content vertical. For example, 90% of consumers in Japan, 86% in Australia, 82% in Singapore, and 76% in Indonesia preferred entertainment ads alongside entertainment articles, and a similar sentiment was observed across verticals.

“[The] research shows that the quality of an advertising environment can influence how consumers perceive ads and associated brands. The APAC data clearly shows contextually relevant ads impact consumers beyond their immediate response, forming part of their longer-term recall and favorability towards a brand,” said Laura Quigley, SVP for APAC at IAS.

She added, “Contextual targeting represents a major opportunity for brands in 2021 and understanding how context influences consumers’ perception of ads is critical to capture long-term interest. For marketers, this is essential to stand out within increasingly crowded marketplaces and drive action as a result of ads.”

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Platforms Featured APAC

OTT video streaming reaches nearly 400M viewers in APAC, says new report

Singapore – Over-the-top (OTT) video streaming reaches 392 million people across Asia Pacific, according to a new report from global video advertising platform SpotX.

According to the report, over two thirds (69%) of video viewers in the region watch streaming video at least once a week, confirming that both the audience size and regularity of OTT viewing have matured and entered the mainstream. The top three markets for OTT viewing were Singapore (91%), Australia (81%), and Indonesia (76%). 

In terms of daily streaming, OTT viewers watch more than two hours of content a day, often out-stripping traditional TV and video-sharing platforms. The leading markets for OTT consumption are the Philippines, Indonesia, and Australia. 

The majority of OTT streaming is done through mobile devices, evident across developing countries. However, smart TV viewership is growing quickly, especially in Australia, Singapore, and Vietnam, where at least one in five video viewers streams through a smart TV.

Meanwhile, most video viewers (67%) prefer to watch free, ad-supported content versus only 23% who prefer to pay for an ad-free service. There is also a clear acceptance of ads in exchange for viewing free content, with 86% of viewers saying they don’t mind watching ads – provided the ad loads are kept light. Also, streamers say that OTT ads are more effective than TV ads at attracting their attention across Southeast Asian countries.

“We are only scratching the surface of the possibilities in OTT. Not only have users grown due to the stay-at-home regulations, but it is a habit that Indonesians will continue to pursue post-pandemic,” said Crisela Magpayo Cervantes, principal partner at Mindshare Indonesia

“Local original series and movies, Korean drama, and sports are driving OTT growth as are different acquisition strategies, through telco partnerships, and new funding models,” she added. 

The research was conducted across the markets of Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, Japan, and Australia through the help of Singapore-based research firm Milieu Insights, which conducted a quantitative survey of 7,000 people across the aforementioned markets.

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Technology Featured APAC

MoEngage, Merkle Sokrati to aid data-driven solutions through new partnership

California, USA – Customer engagement platform MoEngage and dentsu’s India-based customer experience management (CXM) agency, Merkle Sokrati, have entered into a new partnership, which combines MoEngage’s insights-led customer engagement platform with Merkle Sokrati’s enterprise delivery services to grow data-driven solutions for enterprise brands across Asia Pacific.

The combined value package offered by MoEngage-Merkle partnership will enable consumer brands to devise and execute a hyper-personalized experience for their users. 

“Our partnership with Merkle Sokrati is a significant step in this direction. Merkle’s understanding of strategic digital interactions and expertise in enterprise solution delivery is uniquely complementary to MoEngage’s data-driven and AI-enabled marketing automation platform. We believe that both of us make a truly customer-obsessed team,” said Sanjay Kupae, head of global alliances at MoEngage.

Kupae also noted that through this new partnership, they will be able to drive far more business impact for its clients in India, South East Asia, and Australia.

MoEngage and Merkle’s partnership is in response to the constant struggle that marketing and product teams often face, as most of the available tools lack one or more of requisite capabilities or the solution is not implemented to the best of its potential. Furthermore, the modern aspect of mobile-first customers expects a personalized experience. This requires brands to build a 360-degree view of their users, analyze the data and deliver the right message at the right time through the right channel.

“It’s exciting news to partner with MoEngage in today’s times where hyper-personalized engagement with audiences has become imperative. Coupling this with our more than a decade-long focus on building audience-first and data-driven marketing strategies will surely be beneficial for our clients across verticals and industries. We all have seen trying times for consumers and brands alike, and I’m happy to see synergies being developed here in our ecosystem to help businesses bounce back from the year that’s been,” said Sampath Rengachari, chief business officer for martech at Merkle-Sokrati.

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Technology Featured APAC

Artificial intelligence company ADA launches new martech service across APAC

Singapore – Data and artificial intelligence company ADA has announced the launch of its new martech-as-a-service offering across Asia-Pacific to help clients optimize end-to-end sales and marketing efforts.

Through the new service, users can analyze a client’s business operations across the sales and marketing funnel by consulting and matching with ADA’s existing expertise to grow and scale. The new service can also help clients choose the right Martech solutions that match the business maturity level and to optimize current stacks.

“ADA has continuously evolved to create new ways for businesses to adopt data-driven marketing. We are excited to offer these new MarTech services that complete the circle for our clients by allowing them to look at their full sales and marketing funnel with an always-on approach,” said Srinivas Gattamneni, CEO of ADA.

Furthermore, ADA’s new solution can act as an extended arm of the client to enable, train, and scale in-house talent to ensure continuity of strategy and execution. Clients will benefit from this new addition to the current suite of products and services, as ADA continues to use existing data analytics skill sets to drive impactful business outcomes.

The new martech solution responds to the greater need of businesses for updated marketing measures. According to Gartner, some 80% of organizations feel they are sitting on an outdated MarTech roadmap, and 67% think their existing technology is not useful. Meanwhile, a study by Harvard Business Review found that 80% of marketers want better tools to measure return on investment.

“ADA’s MarTech services exist to support businesses in unlocking the full potential of their MarTech investments and to drive growth across all their sales and marketing channels. We believe business growth is not driven by one solution, but many tactics and approaches. We want to be there to collaborate with our clients through the entire journey and to grow together,” said Chris Wiseman, head of marketing technology at ADA.

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Technology Featured APAC

Cisco appoints new president, chairman for APJ, Greater China

Singapore – Technology conglomerate Cisco has named Dave West (left) as its new President, and Irving Tan (right) as Chairman for its Asia Pacific, Japan, and Greater China business.

West will be taking over his predecessor Miyuki Suzuki, as the latter has announced retirement. With more than 20 years of experience with Cisco, Dave’s recent position was the Head of Cisco Japan, where he launched the Japan Country Digitization initiative, built important strategic alliances with key Japanese companies, and drove sustained growth in one of the most strategic markets in the region. 

He has also held key global leadership roles for Cisco, including leading worldwide Enterprise Networking and Security sales and as the chief technological officer for Cisco APJ, where he spearheaded various key initiatives, designed and implemented innovative go-to-market models, and led multi-year digital transformations for customers.

“We are witnessing a major shift in the way businesses operate with technology driving the change. Home to some of the fastest-growing and diverse economies in the world, Asia is leading the charge on this front,” West commented.

He added, “As a global leader in networking, collaboration, and cybersecurity, we are committed to working with our customers and partners to accelerate their digital transformation so they are ready for the future and can fully leverage the growth opportunities that are opening up. I am delighted to be given the opportunity to lead our business in this dynamic region and am looking forward to building on our success.”

Meanwhile, Tan, prior to his new position, was executive vice president and chief of operations for Cisco USA. Tan will partner with West and his leadership team on special projects to drive growth across the region.

“During his 20 years at Cisco, most recently as the head of Japan, Dave has demonstrated a strong understanding of the region, a great talent for recognizing and maximizing market trends and transitions, and the ability to motivate teams and drive growth. He’s the right leader at the right time,” said Gerri Elliott, executive vice president and chief sales and marketing officer at Cisco

Meanwhile, on Tan’s appointment, Elliott commented, “I am delighted that Irving is taking on the role of Chairman for APJC. His experience on the Executive Leadership Team, and as a former leader of APJC, will be invaluable to our efforts to drive sustained growth in the region,”

America-born Cisco develops, manufactures, and sells networking hardware, software, telecommunications equipment, and other high-technology services and products. Its Asia Pacific presence spans11 countries, from Southeast Asia to ANZ.

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Technology Featured APAC

Contentsquare announces APAC expansion, hires two key executives

Singapore-Digital analytics company Contentsquare has recently announced its organizational expansion within the Asia Pacific (APAC) region by establishing several regional offices and appointing two new executives to aid in the company’s operations.

The company upholds its provision of services, including customer behavior, behavior analysis through billions of anonymous web, mobile and app interactions, transforming this knowledge into advisories that increase revenue, engagement and growth.

Its new regional offices are located in the cities of Singapore, Tokyo, Melbourne, and Sydney. 

Following this endeavor, Contentsquare has also employed two key executives for the overall operations of the group. David Bochsler, a former senior head at Microsoft, has been hired as the regional managing director for APAC operations, while Frazer Adnam, former head of CRM Marketing for Deliveroo and later on Afterpay, joined as ANZ Country Manager. The company said the expansion endeavor is part of its goal for the year to specifically expand within the APAC region, which it hopes to stay in the longer run. 

“When I first saw the Contentsquare platform, I was just so excited about the technology. I was the decision maker on the brand side that Contentsquare would have traditionally sold to. I thought, ‘this solves problems that I literally would have needed five people to solve.’ From someone who had been working in customer experience roles for a long period of time, I was completely fascinated by what I saw was going to be the new wave of customer experience technology,” Frazer Adnam, country manager for ANZ Contentsquare stated.

Meanwhile, David Bochsler, Contentsquare’s APAC managing director commented, “Contentsquare is perfectly positioned for substantial growth in Asia. It caters exceptionally well to those very large mature, highly data driven organizations but also caters to those people that are just getting their feet in the water as far as understanding what their online visitors are doing. It’s the first time I’ve seen any technology that’s shown me what’s inside that black box of customer behavior online. It allows brands to finally understand why their digital visitors behave the way they do”.