SINGAPORE - United Overseas Bank (UOB) and Singapore-headquartered e-commerce platform Qoo10 have struck a strategic regional alliance to drive e-commerce growth in South-east Asia.
The alliance is part of UOB's efforts to build ecosystem partnerships and to bring banking services closer to consumers and small business in the region. Both organisations will also promote each other's products and services.
For one thing, small businesses will be able to apply for business loans directly on Qoo10's website, instead of having to submit physical documents such as their financial statements to UOB.
The bank is also exploring the use of artificial intelligence to cut down the credit assessment process so that business owners can receive an outcome on their loan application within the same day.
Meanwhile, Qoo10, which has more than three million buyers, will tap the bank's financial solutions to help consumers and merchants buy and sell products more easily on the Qoo10 website as well as on QuuBe, its new blockchain-based e-commerce platform.
UOB cardmembers can enjoy privileges such as additional 10 per cent in Q*coins, a private blockchain-based token, when they shop on QuuBe. The lender will also provide Qoo10 with banking services as the e-commerce platform deepens its presence in the region.
Ku Young Bae, CEO of Qoo10, said that the partnership will provide Qoo10 merchants and customers with greater financial flexibility in running a business or making purchases.
Said Lawrence Loh, head of group business banking at UOB: "This initiative, along with our range of banking and digital solutions, will enable us to provide better and timelier support to the thousands of small business owners across the region pursuing their growth ambitions."