More than 500 small and medium-sized enterprises (“SMEs”) in Singapore have gained access to new overseas markets digitally, through digital platforms under the Grow Digital initiative. Sales by Singapore companies to overseas buyers using the platforms have been brisk, growing by at least 10 per cent month-on-month this year.
Under the Grow Digital initiative, a joint initiative by Enterprise Singapore (“ESG”) and the Infocomm Media Development Authority (“IMDA”) under the SMEs Go Digital1 programme, SMEs can get a head start in going global by tapping on established Business-to-Business (“B2B”) and Business-to-Consumer (“B2C”) e-commerce platforms.
The platforms are pre-approved by ESG and IMDA for their strong regional or global networks, complementary business services providers such as logistics and financing, proven track records and experience in operating in multiple overseas markets. In doing so, SMEs can seize international business opportunities and diversify their revenue and market streams safely, without the need to establish an in-market physical presence.
Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry & Education, Mr Chee Hong Tat, shared the update to the initiative at the “Grow Digital, Go International” webinar co-organised by ESG, IMDA and SGTech, today. More than 800 companies have registered to attend the webinar.
Platforms to help businesses scale overseas
There are currently five B2B platforms and six B2C solution partners pre-approved under Grow Digital, covering major markets with good e-commerce growth in Southeast Asia such as Hong Kong, China and India.
B2B Platforms: The B2B platforms enable SMEs from sectors such as industrial hardware and machinery, chemicals, processed food, pharmaceuticals, retail, and office supplies, to provide their services and products online and reach out to clients in new markets.
B2C Platforms: The Multichannel E-commerce Platform (“MEP”) Programme will help SMEs to gain rapid entry to new markets by selling their products on multiple overseas B2C e-marketplaces through a MEP provider. In addition, SMEs will receive digital marketing support and training from the Singapore Institute of Retail Studies to operate an e-commerce business.
To provide further support for SMEs during the COVID-19 pandemic period, eligible SMEs that sign up for the MEP Programme between 1 April and 30 September 2020 will receive up to 90%2 grant support.
Ms Jane Lim, Assistant Chief Executive, Sectoral Transformation Group, IMDA said, “E-commerce is a critical enabler to help SMEs cope with challenges and shifts in consumer purchasing trends brought about by Covid-19 – shifts we expect will become the new normal. Through the Grow Digital initiative, we aim to help more SMEs leverage these e-commerce opportunities, and tap on the growth in overseas markets.”
“The Grow Digital initiative is designed for SMEs who are keen to take their first steps into new markets but may not yet have the resources to invest in establishing a physical presence there. To increase the success for SMEs, ESG and IMDA have specially curated the digital platforms to maximise the reach and networks across multiple countries. SMEs will also be supported by a strong network of partners so that they have the necessary digital capabilities to support their online efforts. I urge SMEs to leverage Grow Digital to diversify their sources of revenue and seize new business opportunities beyond our shores,” said Ms Chew Mok Lee, Assistant Chief Executive, ICM & Digitalisation, Enterprise Singapore.
For more information on Grow Digital, please visit: www.imda.gov.sg/GrowDigital
About the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA)
The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) leads Singapore’s digital transformation with infocomm media. To do this, IMDA will develop a dynamic digital economy and a cohesive digital society, driven by an exceptional infocomm media
(ICM) ecosystem – by developing talent, strengthening business capabilities, and enhancing Singapore’s ICM infrastructure. IMDA also regulates the telecommunications and media sectors to safeguard consumer interests while fostering a pro-business environment, and enhances Singapore’s data protection regime through the Personal Data Protection Commission.
For more news and information, visit www.imda.gov.sg or follow IMDA on Facebook IMDAsg and Twitter @IMDAsg.
About Enterprise Singapore
Enterprise Singapore (ESG) is the government agency championing enterprise development. We work with committed companies to build capabilities, innovate and internationalise.
We also support the growth of Singapore as a hub for global trading and startups, and build trust in Singapore’s products and services through quality and standards.
Visit www.enterprisesg.gov.sg for more information
1 The SMEs Go Digital Programme aims to make going digital simple for SMEs. Among other initiatives, it includes Start Digital, Industry Digital Plans and a range of pre-approved digital solutions that help SMEs seize growth opportunities in the digital economy.
2 Previously, eligible SMEs could receive support of up to 70% when adopting MEP solution packages or regional B2B marketplaces.