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Malaysia looks to become top international shopping destination

Malaysia looks to become top international shopping destination

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Malaysia’s Tourism, Arts and Culture has plans to form and lead a national committee to position Malaysia as “an international shopping destination,” said the Malaysia Retailers Association (MRA) in a statement, quoted on The Star.

According to the article, MRA added that Malaysia is still a location that's popular among foreign retailers in Southeast Asia. Even with the COVID-19 pandemic happening this year, new foreign retailers continue to open their first stores in the country. Currently, Malaysia has 34 new brands from 17 countries opening up in the nation. These brands include Matcha Eight, Nitori, Nojima, Ainz and Tulpe, Baristart Coffee, Tsutaya, DonQ and Gyomu from Japan as well as Philipp Plein from German, Balmain from France, Lladro from Spain and Amaris from Switzerland.

Malaysia gathered RM5.13 billion worth of receipts from shopping and 20.6% represented RM25.8 billion tourist expenditure in 2002. In 2018, Malaysia gathered RM7.1 billion worth of tourist shopping expenditure. MRA’s statement also stated that the efforts will be focused on promoting Malaysia as a “world-class shopping destination to overseas and domestic tourists should be streamlined.”

The statement also added that ministries and agencies such as the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry, International Trade and Industry Ministry, Customs Department, Malaysia Association of Tours and Travel Agents (MATTA), MRA, Persatuan Pengurusan Kompleks Malaysia (PPK) and State Tourism Action Council might get involved in this initiative. 

MRA said that Greater Kuala Lumpur's high-quality malls attracted the retailers to open their stores there. It also added that foreign retailers that plans to open before the end of 2023 include Yakiniku Sizzle (Japan), Black Tap (United States), Seibu (Japan), Apple Store (United States), Eslite Bookstore (Taiwan), Bacha Coffee (Morocco), David Rocco (Canada), Omotesando Koffee (Japan), Paris Baguette (South Korea), Nuttea (Taiwan), Shake Shack (United States) and GS25 (South Korea).

The association also made some suggestions on how to help retailers manage labour shortage by investing in automated technology. To make this investment, new retail industry trends can be sustained. For instance, same-day delivery would provide be advantageous for the retailers, quoted on The Star. MARKETING-INTERACTIVE has reached out for more information. 

For instance, Chinese lifestyle retailer MINISO launched its first flagship store in Selangor's Setia City Mall in June 2022. MINISO's VP of international business department, Vincent Huang, told A+M that its Malaysian master licensee's investment in the new flagship store was around RM1.5 million and expects to see a return on investment in two years.

The new store concept, referred to as MINISO 3.0, puts an emphasis on a family-friendly shopping experience and is targeted mainly at the younger audience who are tech-savvy. Hence, MINISO will focus on social media advertising and leverage the influence of KOLs to share stories about the new flagship store. An online to offline strategy is also paramount to attracting footfall. Aside from working Weber Shandwick, it also worked with Lendlease to promote the launch of MINISO 3.0.

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