Vietnam Dealbook: Tiki partners Gravity R&D; IPO-bound VietJet in $14.3b aircraft deal

Image from Tiki website.

Vietnam’s e-commerce platform Tik – backed by Seedcom, CyberAgent Ventures and Sumitomo, and recently acquired by Internet company VNG Corporation – has forged partnership with Gravity R&D to increase revenue and customer base. Meanwhile, private low-cost carrier VietJet, anticipating an IPO within the next few months, has entered two significant agreements to purchase aircraft and engines from US companies.

Tiki partners Gravity R&D post acquisition by VNG

Vietnam-based e-commerce company Tiki, in which Vietnamese Internet major VNG Corporation has acquired a 38 per cent stake, has partnered with recommender system provider Gravity R&D, in an effort to boost sales and gain customer loyalty in the local market.

Gravity R&D has offered the e-commerce business a pilot period, which resulted in an additional $13.15 GMV per 1,000 recommendations and a 6 per cent average conversion rate. The test outperformed Gravity R&D’s competitors, Strands and TargetingMantra (which was acquired by Snapdeal), revealed an official with Tiki.

While Gravity R&D positions Tiki as the second biggest e-commerce site in Vietnam, an earlier report from the Vietnam E-commerce and Information Technology Agency showed that the VNG’s investee company was not one of the top 10 e-commerce businesses by revenue in 2015.

Last week, local media reported VNG, the first announced unicorn of Southeast Asia, had invested VND383 billion ($17 million) for a 38 per cent stake in Tiki, citing a financial report of the Internet major. DEALSTREETASIA could not verify either the financial statement or a confirmation from VNG’s chief executive officer.

Meanwhile, according to the Gravity R&D release, Tiki has reached a deal to secure $15 million financing from VNG. The deals follows previous investments of two Japanese investors, CyberAgent Ventures and Sumitomo.

Tiki started out by selling books online. It has expanded the scope of operations to over 300,000 listings on the site in over twelve product categories. The company is recording triple-digit growth per year and has an average of 3 million unique visitors per month, according to its Hungarian partner.

Also read: Vietnamese internet major VNG Corp picks 38% in e-commerce platform Tiki for $17m

VietJet signs $14.3b deals for aircraft, turbos

Vietnam’s low cost carrier VietJet inked two aircraft and engine contracts worth a total of over $14.3 billion with Boeing and Pratt & Whitney, Monday morning, a business activity during US president Barack Obama’s visit to Hanoi.

The agreements include a $11.3 billion purchasing deal of 100 B737 Max 200 aircrafts from Boeing, marking the largest ever single commercial airplane purchase in the Vietnam aviation industry, the Vietnamese company said. Delivery of the jets will be operated from 2019 until 2023. By that time, VietJet will own a fleet of over 200 airplanes to facilitate its expansion, including opening longer international routes, said the budged carrier CEO Tran Thi Phuong Thao.

In the same morning, VietJet also signed a $3.04 billion deal to buy engines produced by Pratt & Whitney, a company under United Technologies Corp. The items will be equipped for the planes it had ordered with Airbus last year.

The fast-growing low-cost airline increased its fleet to 30 aircrafts last year and expects to expand to 42 units by the end of 2016.

Also read: How Vietnamese budget carrier VietJet prepares for a successful IPO