Cambodia Investment Review

Prince Supermarket pioneers with ‘O2O business strategy’ and rapid expansion in Cambodia

Prince Supermarket pioneers with ‘O2O business strategy’ and rapid expansion in Cambodia

Harrison White

One of Cambodia’s pioneering franchise brands Prince Supermarket has announced it will be opening over 100 franchise stores by the end of 2023 and 150 by the end of 2024 utilizing an online-to-offline (O2O) business strategy.

Speaking to Cambodia Investment Review Mr. Zhang, General Manager, Prince Supermarket explained that the company operates under the concept of ‘We understand you and your lifestyle.’

Prince Supermarket, an affiliate under Prince Real Estate Group, offers franchisees a diversity of commodity chains, customer service, distribution channels, store layouts, and so on, turning every store into a promotional platform and better meeting the market’s needs.

To read more about Prince Real Estate Group’s proactive moves to stimulate the retail market click here.

According to Prince Supermarket, the franchise operates in an online-to-offline (O2O) model, offering a discounted one-time franchise fee of US$888 for the first 50 franchise stores with a square footage less than 200 m2, including:

  • Store logo design
  • Location and commercial zone assessment
  • Staff training
  • Among other supporting benefits to the value of US$21,900.

The retail marketing definition of O2O is a business strategy that’s designed to draw potential online customers to physical stores. The approach also aims to create a seamless digital experience at all stages: before, during, and after the purchase.

Consumers are identified online through email campaigns and advertising. These potential customers are then enticed to bricks and mortar stores to make a purchase. The physical store may have its own promotions, too, to further encourage sales.

“The apparent growth in Cambodia’s retail sector in recent years is the rationale behind Prince Supermarket’s promotion of O2O franchises. Many international retail big name such as 7-11 and Circle K has grabbed a slice of the pie, boosting the competition in Cambodia. It is not hard to see why the retail business in this country is booming,” Mr. Zhang said.

Prince Supermarket’s fresh produce section.

The teams behind the operation of Prince Supermarket are the Operation Management Department, Franchise Development Department, Marketing and Planning Department, Purchasing Division, and more.

“To boost our brand effect, a specialist is assigned to handle the ins and outs of store franchise, who serves to promote a store from both online and offline, assess the location, survey the market, train the staff, and plan for the opening of the store, which is time-saving and worry-free for the franchisees,” Mr. Zhang said.

“In addition, the Prince Supermarket franchise is not limited to convenience stores; it is an all-around franchise covering stores varying from less than 200 m2 to 5,000 m2,” he added.

Prince Supermarket and WOWNOW partnership

In August, Prince Supermarket and the first super APP in Cambodia and a lifestyle services provider WOWNOW held a high-octane launch ceremony presided over by Prince Real Estate Group CEO Edward Lee, with top management of WOWNOW and Prince Group, franchising partners and other distinguished guests in attendance.

To read more about the Prince Supermarket and WOWNOW launch click here.

The partnership will continue to develop the company’s O2O business strategy offering an advantage of the collaboration between Prince Supermarket and WOWNOW app lies in the O2O retail model, with WOWNOW focusing on online operation and Prince Supermarket managing the physical stores, to the effect of ‘one plus one is bigger than two.’

Prince Supermarket and WOWNOW partnership signing.

“As competition ramps up in the retail sector, the growth of e-commerce has far surpassed that of traditional physical stores, hence the need for retailers to alter their business model and jump on the bandwagon. This O2O retail joint venture between Prince Supermarket and the WOWNOW app is without a doubt an affirmative exploration born in this context,” Mr. Zhang said.

“Not only will a franchisee benefit from Prince Supermarket’s rich well of brands, products and technical support, but also the big data analysis and professional logistics of WOWNOW. In time, Prince Supermarket is confident that a new retail model of multi-product, warehouse store integration, catering to every whim of consumers. This means a bigger slice of the pie,” he added.

Prince Supermarket growing with Cambodia 

According to the National Bank of Cambodia, the Kingdom’s GDP per capita has increased to $1,842 in 2022, a 6.4 percent increase compared to 2021, $1,730 reflecting the ongoing annual improvement of people’s living standards and economic growth.

“Judging from the statistics, the retail sector in Cambodia showed a high growth trend in 2021, with transactions in e-commerce approaching US$1 billion. Many international retail chains like 7-11 and Circle K have secured their share in the Cambodian market,” Mr. Zhang said.

“But e-commerce has far outgrown physical retail stores in recent years. That is why we think the retail sector will see strong growth. In particular, the O2O model will expand the market to a greater extent. Our major competitors are Aeon, Lucky and Makro,” he added.

Prince Supermarket in Phnom Penh.

Data shows that Cambodia’s retail market surged in 2021, with the market turnover of E-commerce reaching nearly $1 billion.

Looking to capture this growing economy and expanding middle-class Prince Supermarket is planning on opening five supermarkets and one warehouse store from 2023 to 2024, while aiming to add over 150 franchises into our portfolio.

“In the meantime, expansion into other cities such as Sihanoukville, Siem Reap, Kep and Kampot is also in our schedule, in order to grow in scale, boost the brand and enlarge the chain in the next five years. Moreover, we have been actively exploring the markets in Vietnam, Laos and Thailand,” Mr. Zhang said.

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