Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – Adwork, a self-serve end-to-end advertising platform, has partnered up with media organization SPH Media for the launch of a first cross-border media marketplace for Southeast Asia. This will allow Malaysian small and medium enterprises to advertise their business in Singapore.

Kumaresh Visvanathan, CEO at Adwork, stated that Adwork will be expanding regionally to various countries in the next five years. After Singapore, Adwork will expand its reach to Indonesia and Thailand next year, while 2023 will see Australia, Vietnam and Philippines coming on board. 

“No one in the region has attempted this cross-border media buy platform before and we are the first to introduce it. Going regional and introducing cross-border media buy has always been part of Adwork’s regional expansion plan and now it is finally happening,” Visvanathan said.

Founded in 2019, Adwork levelled the playing field for these smaller businesses. Being one of Malaysia’s largest media advertising marketplace, they offer advertising across 12 channels like billboards, newspaper, radio, television, talk shows and more. Similar to other e-commerce platforms, users can select their desired media advertisement channel, upload their creative art work and pay.

To date, Adwork is developing its proprietary recommendation engine which is AI-based and is set to be launched sometime next year. This feature will be able to read and analyze existing SME profiles in its system and recommend potential products which are relevant to users. 

It will also be able to tell users what other similar SMEs have bought and the exposure rate. This system will also educate users on the various advertising platforms available out there both locally and internationally. It will also make recommendations for overseas advertisement in a bid to help local businesses go global.

“Everyone wants to expand their business but most of the time, they just don’t have access to the right platform to market their products outside Malaysian borders or unsure where to begin. This is one of the ways to do it, where users will not only get to go regional but also be well-educated on the options and possibilities available out there,” Visvanathan added.

Meanwhile, Alicia Luke, channel excellence lead at SPH Media, hopes that this first-of-its-kind platform will be able to help more SMEs in Singapore and Malaysia grow and expand their business. 

“We are delighted to be on board this partnership and it certainly is an exciting time ahead. In our current technological era, we have to start thinking out of the box, in terms of advertising, and not rely solely on traditional methods which may not work for all, especially in this digital day and age. I believe that the SME advertisement market is huge and with the help of this platform, all business big and small will now be on a level playing field,” Luke said.