GCash, the Philippines’ leading mobile wallet, is stepping up alongside micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises to promote e-commerce in the country, which hosts some of the world’s most active smartphone and social media users.
With its 65,000 merchant partners and 20 million users, GCash is well-positioned as a pillar to support the expansion of e-commerce, which brought in $840 million in revenues in 2018 alone.
At the recent TrainForTrade talk co-presented by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development and the Department of Trade and Industry, GCash highlighted the role of fintech companies in developing a cashless ecosystem that allows more Filipinos to participate in the economy.
“For a cashless ecosystem to become a reality for Filipinos, you have to look through the consumer’s daily journey. Where does he/she interact with payments? Where does he/she interact with cash?” said JM Aujero, vice president for merchant solutions and sales at Mynt (Globe Fintech Innovations Inc.), which operates GCash, at the May 20 UNCTAD event held in Dusit Thani, Makati.
“For GCash, answering these questions not only means maintaining market leadership; it is also the key to a more inclusive financial system that offers opportunities even to the most largely ignored segments,” he said.
An economic segment that will benefit from a cashless ecosystem are MSMEs, which makeup 99.6 percent of all local enterprises and contribute 25 percent to the Philippines’ gross domestic product. E-commerce is seen as a way for MSMEs to become more competitive.
By 2025, e-commerce is expected to account for 4.7 percent of all retail sales in the Philippines, according to Statista. This is consistent with studies that show more and more Filipinos are making purchases online.
A report by ASEAN UP 2018 showed Lazada as the top online merchant in the Philippines, with a monthly traffic estimate of 67.8 million. It is followed by Shopee, with 9.85 million; Zalora with 2.95 million; Metrodeal with 2.89 million; Globe with 2.15 million; ebay with 1.9 million; and Carousel, Galleon, cd-r king, and VillMan with a combined monthly traffic of about 2.1 million.