WorldFirst to expand e-commerce digital finance solutions for SMEs in Southeast Asia in 2023-2024

  • Solutions to help more Southeast Asia SMEs connect and grow with global e-marketplaces with secure, fast and reliable cross-border payment and financial services 

  • Singapore-based SME clients of WorldFirst reported 70% higher monthly GMV between January and October 2023

WorldFirst, a one-stop digital payment and financial services platform for cross-border trade SMEs, recently announced its plan to launch e-commerce digital finance solutions in new Southeast Asian markets in 2023 and 2024, aiming to support online sellers achieve growth with secure, fast and reliable cross-border payment and financial services as well as easy one-stop connection to multiple global marketplaces.

Building on its success in China, Singapore and other markets, WorldFirst will introduce the suite of solutions through World Account to Vietnam, Thailand, the Philippines, and Malaysia to facilitate global selling, management and growth for SMEs.

Selling: SMEs can open a multi-currency World Account within minutes to be able to trade like a local around the world. World Account supports 42 currencies to over 200 global markets to facilitate global sourcing. It also enables local collection in 30 currencies from more than 120 e-marketplaces, supported by WorldFirst’s access to 40 local fast payment schemes worldwide. While SMEs are often denied access to global multi-currency pooling by traditional service providers, with World Account, funds paid into sellers’ local collection account will be instantly pooled over as available balance.

Management: During the crucial scaling-up stage, SMEs are often hampered by the challenge to manage multiple stores across different e-marketplaces under multiple entities. World Account provides a single user-friendly portal for sellers to manage their growing operations across countries and marketplaces. Sellers can tier stores, e-marketplaces and entities, while customizing account statements accordingly for reconciliation.

Growth: Through its Global Voyage program launched in 2022, WorldFirst offers hassle-free one-stop store opening services across global marketplaces, thanks to its strong partnerships with these marketplaces. With an expedited process across 28 partner e-commerce platforms, set-up time for the seller goes down to within 24 hours. In addition, sellers may find a broad array of value-added professional services through WorldFirst to boost their growth, from online advertising, logistics to website development and management.

“Building on our global fintech capabilities and strong success in China, Singapore and other markets, we are confident our secure and fast cross-border payment and e-commerce enablement services can help small businesses in Southeast Asia extend their international footprint,” said Clara Shi, CEO of WorldFirst and Vice President of Ant Group.

WorldFirst prioritizes the safety and security of client transactions above all else with a leading fraud prevention track record in the industry. It partners with banks and financial institutions to safeguard client funds, including eight Globally Systemically Important Banks.

The adoption of cross-border digital payment systems is considered a key catalyst to e-commerce growth, making it easier for small businesses to find new customers by accessing new regional and global markets and managing their payments, a report by the EU-ASEAN Business Council finds. In Singapore, SME clients of WorldFirst experienced a 70% increase in their monthly GMV between October and January 2023.