WeChat overtakes Facebook in Indonesian market

WeChat overtakes Facebook in Indonesian market

Staff Reporter


Chinese smartphone messaging app WeChat has become one of the four major instant messaging tools widely used in Indonesia, reports Shanghai’s China Business News, citing Andi Ardiansyah, an Indonesian representative based in Guangzhou.

As of the third quarter of 2013, the number of active users of the Chinese and global version of WeChat touched 271.9 million, surging by 124%. Internet giant Tencent, which developed the popular app, said the growth has been aided by strengthening international marketing campaigns.

Ardiansyah stated that many Indonesian entrepreneurs like using WeChat for its reliability. The growing proximity between China and Indonesia’s political and business circles has also helped boost its popularity.

“I use WeChat because many of my Chinese friends use it,” said Ardiansyah.

In addition to forging closer ties between the two countries, Tencent has been operating in the Southeast Asian country and has entered a joint venture with MNC, a subsidiary of Indonesia’s largest media group PT Global Mediacom, which has sped up the expansion of WeChat in the social media market.

MNC said it was mainly broadcasting advertisements or hosting events to promote the app.

Before WeChat entered the Indonesian market, Facebook was the largest social media network in the country. WeChat now has an edge given the flourishing development of mobile internet in Indonesia.

Market observers said that an outstanding marketing strategy was the key to WeChat’s success in the country as the app has captured considerable market share in a short period of time through advertising.

In addition to MNC, WeChat broadcasts different television advertisements in Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Mexico by cooperating with local tech or media firms. WeChat also collaborated with Google to promote its services in the United States last week, the paper said. WeChat faces a number of obstacles in the mature European and US market, however.

Ma Huateng or Pony Ma, founder and CEO of Tencent, is now placing great emphasis on the internationalization of WeChat. He said China used to copy the models adopted by the US market in the internet arena but the mobile internet’s development has been faster in China compared to Western countries, which presents Chinese firms with a rare opportunity.


About bambooinnovator
Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (www.heroinnovator.com), the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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