Roughly about a year ago we wrote about JD and Central’s partnership, and the challenges they would have to overcome. Almost a year has passed since, and we think the site’s traffic speaks volumes:

Source: SimilarWeb

You might say – how is web traffic even relevant since the majority of online shoppers in developing markets will visit e-commerce platforms via mobile. Well, that is true – however, in Thailand, the web still accounts for (easily) 30%-40% of total sales for e-commerce platforms. So what the graph above shows is still significant.’s arch-rivals, however, show no signs of falter – traffic has been pretty much stable. Recent numbers released by Shopee (owned by SEA) revealed that the business was growing strength to strength, recording increased revenues, and reduced losses.

The site traffic stats are also revealing:

Source: SimilarWeb

Will JD join the rest who tried but failed to crack Thailand’s competitive e-commerce market?

Time will tell – but we find it hard to believe that Central Group would actively try to disrupt its huge retail business through e-commerce, even when it has this active joint venture with JD.

Thanks for reading The Low Down (TLD), the blog by the team at Momentum Works. Got a different perspective or have a burning opinion to share? Let us know at [email protected].


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He has worn many hats in the past - selling advertising space, banking services, and even trading stocks. In 2013, longing for a change of scenery, he joined Rocket Internet’s (now Alibaba’s) Lazada as a online marketer in Bangkok, where he experienced first hand life in a startup. He never looked back since - landing lead roles at Rocket’s EasyTaxi (Singapore), Rocket’s MEIG (Dubai), and Bamilo (Tehran). After that, he launched (and ran) the Thai venture for one of Singapore’s biggest cross-border ecommerce. Last year, Chong put his expertise to work, helping an SGX-listed company relocate to and run operations in Thailand. Nowadays, he’s just chilling by the countryside.