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Joint push for SMEs' online sales

Kasikornbank has announced a collaboration with Alibaba.com, a leading platform for global wholesale trade, to help small and medium-sized enterprises sell products online.

At least 5,000 KBank SME customers in industries such as agriculture, jewellery, textiles, wooden furniture, food and beverages, cosmetics and skincare are expected to apply for verified membership on Alibaba.com.

News of the collaboration comes as KBank chairman Banthoon Lamsam said SMEs had to improve their product standards to sustain e-commerce sales.

He said a lack of marketing and distribution channels was the main problem for SMEs, with the Alibaba deal designed to help them sell products globally, especially in China. About 230 million Chinese have access to Alibaba online, meaning SMEs have a chance to sell more products in that market.

KBank has also integrated its K-Payment Gateway with the payment system of Alipay, a related company of Alibaba and China's largest third-party online payment service provider, to build an online cross-border payment channel for the bank's corporate customers.

The service will be effective from November 1.

Currently, consumers in more than 200 countries and regions are able to purchase products from Chinese merchants using Alipay, and an increasing number of overseas merchants are leveraging Alipay's cross-border payment solutions to sell their products and services to Chinese consumers.

Timothy Leung, head of business development at Alibaba.com, said that at present there were around 330,000 Thai sellers on Alibaba.com.

A verified member has to pay a fee of US$99 (Bt3,150) per year, while a gold member pays $950.


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