Aden: Not the Arab port city, but Southeast Asia’s fastest growing fulfillment firm.
Google Search in 2014 would yield “Aden” results mostly from the history conflict-ridden Yemen’s once prosperous port of Aden. Aden, an order fulfillment and logistics company founded in Bangkok, draws inspiration from this medieval city. It was an ancient logistics hub for exports from spices and gems, even Thai ivory. Aden believes that the future of commerce and development lies in diverse but talent-rich Southeast Asia.
ASEAN eCommerce simplified
Aden today represents Thailand and Southeast Asia’s dream of eCommerce fulfillment fit for the diverse markets, comprised of a largely-untapped rural clientele. It was initially established primarily to complement the eCommerce platforms of Ascend Group, iTrueMart. It boasts of about 8,000 sq.m. of warehouse space to serve an initial 8,000 orders per day, with a peak of 17,000 orders.
A marked increase in online shopping among the younger customers and the BPO sector particularly in the Philippines, average orders peak to 20,000 a day. It represents a steady albeit slow shift towards door to door fulfillment.
In Thailand, Aden follows a delivery window of 1-2 days for urban and provincial deliveries. An average of 98% fulfillment and delivery for same day orders, only differing for larger appliances and equipment. The delivery service includes cash on delivery service, amounting to 50% of payment options in Thailand.
Aden’s success with iTrueMart enabled the company to expand to another Ascend Group subsidiary service, WeLoveShopping, and the first non-Ascend client, Tarad.
Expansion in the ASEAN
Success with Ascend and non-Ascend accounts gave an encouraging outlook towards expansions in Southeast Asia. Philippine warehouse operations from the Aden hub in Pasig, a sub-urban industrial commune east of Manila, operates on a nationwide basis. It primarily serves the iTrueMart customer base in the archipelago.
In order to support business to business (B2B) and business to client (B2C) operations of Ascend, Aden expanded to an end-to-end service. It specifically targets the open market potential towards expansion in the ASEAN economic corridor. Aden drives to kickstart and broaden eCommerce development in the region. It builds up underserved but potential eCommerce players from platform development to store management.
As part of its expansion, Aden aims to establish key presences in Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia by 2017.