Toral: Cebu E-Commerce Summit-A A +A
Tuesday, March 5, 2013
LAST Feb. 9, I was in Cebu to conduct an e-commerce boot camp at Location63. I was very happy with its outcome as most participants are already busy with their respective e-commerce endeavors, either as a pure digital play or as complement to their existing businesses.
The experience made me decide to extend the 4th DigitalFilipino E-Commerce Summit that happened last Feb. 22 in Manila and bring it to Cebu on March 23. Topics and speakers are now being posted at http://ecomsummit.digitalfilipino.com
I truly believe that e-commerce has finally come of age in the Philippines as young entrepreneurs are now taking the initiative in coming up with projects defining how they want e-commerce to be.
I saw this with MetroDeal.com, a site created by 26-year-old Ralph Manalo Wunsch.
Ralph puts a face behind what Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Amado Tetangco Jr. said last year, that the Philippines will hit the sweet demographic spot this 2014 with Filipinos having an average age of 24.
They will be the ones who will propel our economic growth. For me, they can either become a strong part of our work force or an entrepreneurial force serving the needs of our ever dynamic and restless generation.
I cannot contain the level of excitement that I have on what is happening in this e-commerce space.
In 2004, I wrote in the 1st edition of Philippine Internet Review (10 years of Internet History 1994 – 2004) that there will be 41 million Internet users this 2014.
Data presented to us during the 4th DigitalFilipino E-Commerce Summit, however, shows we only have 34 million Internet users now with an e-commerce growth standing still at P5 billion.
I know that if I am that optimistic with e-commerce, that kind of e-commerce data needs to be further validated and corrected if necessary. I am blessed to have Dr. Nick Fontanilla of Asia Pacific Centre for Research to look into it. Based on our discussion and observation on data-gathering methodologies, the way it is being done in the past created a lot of problem areas, e-commerce being diverse and dynamic.
Dr. Fontanilla believes it should be measured on the supply side rather than the demand side in order to be repeatable, scalable and methodical. In the weeks to come, the methodology will be refined further and this will be presented at the Cebu E-Commerce Summit on March 23.
If all proceed according to plan, we will have initial baseline figures this June 2013. I am keeping my fingers crossed and praying that we will be able to make it work.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 06, 2013.