Southeast Asia's e-commerce growth is still accelerating, says Alibaba-backed Lazada

Key Points
  • E-commerce in Southeast Asia is still at the "beginning of the journey" and still witnessing "accelerating growth," aid Alexis Lanternier, CEO of Lazada Singapore.
Singles Day sales accelerated in Southeast Asia this year: Lazada
Singles Day sales accelerated in Southeast Asia this year: Lazada

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba may have recorded its slowest ever annual growth rate for its Singles Day shopping extravaganza this year, but a large online retailer in Southeast Asia that is majority-owned by Alibaba said it witnessed accelerating growth during the event.

Southeast Asia is at the "beginning of the journey" and still witnessing "accelerating growth," said Alexis Lanternier, CEO of Lazada Singapore told CNBC on Monday. "We are in the exciting space of accelerating growth."

Lazada — a Singapore-based online shopping website with operations across Southeast Asia — hosted its own Singles Day event. When the event kicked off at midnight, Lazada saw three times more shopper traffic this year, compared to last year. Gross merchandise value also spiked seven times at midnight versus a year ago.

Lanternier said he was upbeat about sales in the region, home to a population of 560 million people and which has a rising mobile phone penetration.

Sunday was the 10th edition of the annual Singles Day event, which is also called the Double 11 shopping festival because it falls on Nov. 11. During the 24-hour period, Alibaba offered huge discounts across its e-commerce sites such as Tmall.

This year, the company smashed a record 213.5 billion yuan ($30.7 billion) in sales on Sunday during its 24-hour online retail frenzy Singles' Day.

Despite the record haul, the annual sales growth rate fell from 39 percent to 27 percent — the slowest rate in the event's 10-year history amid rising trade tensions between Beijing and the Washington that has hit the Chinese economy.

— CNBC's Arjun Kharpal and Reuters contributed to this report.

Correction: This article has been updated to accurately reflect the population of Southeast Asia.