Vietnam’s retail industry banks on e-commerce to minimise COVID-19 impact

Despite the massive drop in direct visitor traffic, the sector has managed to recover lost revenue 

Interiors of a shopping centre in Ho Chi Minh City. MidoriPhotography/Shutterstock

According to the Vietnam News Agency, e-commerce, online shopping and delivery services have managed to save the retail industry in Vietnam in the first quarter of the year despite the public health crisis.

The General Statistics Office of Vietnam revealed that the Q1 turnover for hotel and tourism services fell by 27.8 percent and the food and beverage dropped by 9.6 percent. Data published by CBRE Vietnam also showed that the number of consumers visiting shopping centres have declined by around 80 percent in Ho Chi Minh and Hanoi.

Yet, even though the revenue for direct shopping descended, e-commerce and online shopping enabled several retail businesses to recover from the pandemic.

Vo Thi Phuong Mai, the deputy director and head of retail services at CBRE Vietnam, said that the outbreak has had a negative impact on direct visitor traffic, but it expanded the opportunities available for small- and medium-sized models, including e-commerce, pharmacies and convenience stores.

More: Winners of Vietnam Property Awards help ease the nation’s woes in the throes of the pandemic

“E-commerce was a bright and transforming point, which supports physical stores during the pandemic,” she added. And since the multi-channel sales would become more agile, she believes that it could even perform better after the country has recovered from the pandemic.

Among the business magnates who were able to benefit from the sector’s swift transition into the virtual realm is Celadon Cultural Village by Gamuda Land (HCMC) Joint Stock Company who won the Best Retail Architectural Design award at the 5th PropertyGuru Vietnam Property Awards 2019.

If you know of any award-worthy real estate projects in Vietnam? Nominate them for the 6th Vietnam Property Awards by 26 June 2020. Simply visit asiapropertyawards.com/en/award/vietnam-property-awards for more details.