Sep. 17, 2020
Promoting Digital Transformation Across the supply chain of Myanmar
～Sumitomo Corporation Invests in NearMe, a Payment Service Platform for Retailers～
Sumitomo Corporation (Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; Representative Director, President and Chief Executive Officer: Masayuki Hyodo) has invested in NearMe Co., Ltd. (hereinafter, “NearMe”), which is a fintech startup that enables retail stores1 to sell digital products2 and provides payment service in Myanmar.
Recently, the communication infrastructure has been expanded rapidly in Myanmar and the cell phone diffusion rate has increased to about 150 percent. However, due to low bank account and credit card ownership rates, online payment has not yet been popularized in the country, with face-to-face cash payment at stores remaining the mainstream payment method in people’s daily lives. Consumers need to visit respective stores to purchase goods, pay fees for cell phones as well as for water supply, electricity and other utility services, to repay loans, and to make various other payments.
NearMe sells digital products to consumers and provides payment service through the terminal devices for its mobile apps that are installed at the retail stores with which the company has concluded business partnership agreements (hereinafter, “partner stores”). Consumers can make various payments all together through the terminals introduced to the partner stores, and with these terminals NearMe enables consumers to access various services easily through the partner stores, which they visit on a daily basis.
Sumitomo Corporation has been developing telecommunications business in Myanmar. Utilizing network of 50,000 member stores of NearMe, Sumitomo Corporation will increase the value of the existing business through promoting the spread of mobile payment service and utilizing data. In Myanmar, there are many retail stores where order placement/receipt and inventory/sales management are all manually conducted. Through this investment, Sumitomo Corporation will foster the introduction of digital services that contribute to the sophistication of store management3 to the partner stores and the promotion of digital transformation (DX) across the entire supply chain such as food and retail business.
Note 1: Retail stores
Kiosks, convenience stores, grocery stores and other small stores that directly sell goods to consumers
Note 2: Digital products
Prepaid cards for cell phones, video streaming service, games and other products
Note 3: Digital services that contribute to the sophistication of store management
Digital management services for marketing activities, order placement/receipt, sales and others
■Outline of NearMe
|Company name||:||NearMe Co., Ltd.|
|Head office location||:||Yangon, Myanmar|
|Number of employees||:||52|
■Sumitomo Corporation’s Material Issues
Sumitomo Corporation Group positions “Six Material Issues to Achieve Sustainable Growth with Society” as an important factor in developing business strategies and in the decision-making process for individual businesses. Going forward, we will pursue sustainable growth by resolving these issues through our business activities. This Project especially contributes to “Contributing to the Development of Local Communities and Industries”,“Establishing a Foundation for Comfortable and Enriching Lifestyles”,“Providing Diverse “Accessibility”, “Developing Human Resources and Promoting Diversity”.