Aeon Co and honestbee have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to form a business alliance, enabling both companies to develop new services that better match the rapidly changing demands of consumers. The partnership stems from the growing trend of online purchase pattern and a desire to innovate their offering to enhance value for Malaysians.
Aeon Malaysia declined to comment on the monetary value of the partnership.
As a pilot project of the collaboration, Aeon's Mid Valley store will initiate honestbee's personal shopper service. Customers who live within a 17 kilometre radius from the store will enjoy a minimum 1-hour delivery service for the purchase of listed grocery products.
“In order to enhance the value for our customers by moving towards an omni-channel retailer, we want to combine our strengths with honestbee’s expertise to digitalise our customer’s shopping experience," Shinobu Washizawa, managing director of Aeon Co, said. He added that Aeon will be closely monitoring customer feedback and demands, and will consider expanding the home delivery service within Malaysia and in terms of merchandise offering.
Last September, Aeon Malaysia announced plans to open more malls in West Malaysia within the next three years. Executive director Poh Ying Loo said the company will be investing over RM300 million to open a mall in Kuching in Q2 2018, but declined to reveal more details about the potential malls in Peninsular Malaysia.
This comes after the Malaysian retail market saw an improvement in consumer sentiments compared to 2016. According to Poh, Aeon remains optimistic about the country’s retail market amidst the demanding landscape since last year, as consumers have been spending carefully. He added that although there will be more players in the market in future, there should still be enough business opportunities for now.