eCargo Holdings (ASX:ECG) Presentation, FNN Online Investor Event, September 2021

Company Presentations

eCargo Holdings Limited (ASX:ECG) CEO Lawrence Lun presents on the company's solutions for brands and retailers to accelerate online sales and launch into new markets, discussing eCargo's technology for supply chain logistics, distribution and trading.

Well, thank you everyone for joining the session. As client mentioned, I'm Lawrence. I'm the CEO of eCargo Holdings Limited. We are listed on the Australian Stock Exchange since 2014. And really, as client mentioned, our purpose is really to help brands expand into Asia, whether that's online or offline.

So without further ado, let me switch on the slides. Disclaimer, won't go through it. Just for everyone's reference. But simply put, our mission at eCargo is really to help brands sell more. And what that means is really, we have a suite of solutions that we offer to brands or retailers to really accelerate their sales online and launch into new markets. All this is supported by technologies that we've been building within our company to really digitalise the supply chain across, whether it's on logistics all the way to distribution and trading.

How we do this is, if you look at in terms of what we call full commerce enabling services, it's really a full end to end service. So on one end, it's really the logistics and warehousing. Whether that is setting up warehousing, operating it for fulfillment for online orders or for B2B orders, or looking at where retailers and brands need to expand into international markets and needs to look at freight services, we support that on that one end. Custom clearance is part of the services that we provide. As well as e-commerce development, which is on the other end, where if you're a brand or retailers looking to set up their online platforms, that's where we provide support, whether that's on Salesforce Commerce Cloud, BigCommerce, Shopify, and more.

We've been, I'll touch a little bit on the brands that we've been supporting, but we also work with brands and retailers to support them with channel management services. So that's helping them actually operate their online stores. Once it's set up, providing customer service, providing design expertise, marketing support, and all.

Now, with the acquisition of Metcash back in 2018, which is the export business, we also developed a distribution network that we really help brands from Australia that can expand into new markets like China, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Malaysia, both online and offline. As of today, we have worked with over a hundred, we're working with over 120 distribution partners, and we offer over 4,000 point of sale locations in Asia for brands to expand into. So whether that's from a small, medium enterprise brand to a large brand, whether in the industries in food, health, beauty, we provide services to support them.

eCargo, on its own, really runs on three major franchises in Australia. We operate under a business banner called Amblique, which is we acquired. It's the business that we acquired a hundred percent back in 2014 when we listed. Since then, we've launched over 55 brands, over a hundred different currencies on different platforms, globally, for these brands. These include the likes of Michael Hill, Lorna Jane, Barbeques Galore, Fisher and Paykel, et cetera. Obviously, with COVID, with the user experience shifting from offline to online purchases, in 2020, we see that all the brands that we've supported launching into market have generate over $725 million in sales, just purely in the Australian market.

On the middle, ECG, which is really a consolidation of Metcash export business, as I've mentioned, and our previous eCargo China business, it's combined into a franchise called ECG. And really, it's supporting distribution trading across online and offline Asia. Now, specifically, I've mentioned markets like China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, for brands that really want to enter into those markets. Since then, we've launched over 45 brands. And we built up a distribution network of over 4,000 point of sale locations. And the idea is, really, to allow brands easy access into new markets without having a heavy investment. And it can generate a quicker return.

On the third part is, really, our proprietary SaaS platform that we've been building since 2014, which is called eCore OS. This started as a order management system, really, to help brands get visibility across online platforms that they trade on. And now, it's developed over 20 different marketplaces across Asia that really allow a brand or retailer that trade across multiple countries, multiple platforms, to have visibility on where their sales are and how they can generate further sales and orders across these platforms.

We've also created a set of APIs that really allow integration from any ERP system that brands or other companies really want access to. And to get visibility around data to help them process more information around their e-commerce sales.

Lastly, is a B2B trading platform, which we've just launched and I'll touch on a little bit. It's really allowed B2B trading enablement across Asia. Now, a little stats for eCore OS, since the first half of 2021, we processed over one million orders. These are all online orders across Asia. Now, this excludes some Australia as markets.

So what is our business model? Something quite across those three different franchises, I divide those into what I call growth business and what I call foundational business. If looking at foundational business, revenue structure is very simple distribution trading. It's really taking a distribution rate of brands. And basically, whether it's on exclusivity basis or on a trading basis, we'll buy wholesale and then we sell to our distribution network. And we make the margin in between. Supply chain services, basically, generating revenue across different supply chain solutions, whether that's freight, warehousing, or fulfillment. And in e-commerce enablement, that includes setting up a e-commerce platforms on a project fee basis. And then the sales commission on sales generated online, subsequently. Providing the operational services, providing marketing services, on top.

Now, our focus, going forward, for eCargo's business is, really, to return back into our technology route. And that's really, really more emphasis around eCore OS as a platform, and providing more services that we can create across the value chain. Basically, our focus, going forward, is really our technology-enabled service, wrapped around eCore OS. And that's really to help drive efficiency scale for brands that really want to enter into different markets a lot quicker.

A little touch on our performance in 2020, our revenue, sorry, these are on Hong Kong dollars, but the idea is our revenue for 2020 increased by 23%. This is on a back of COVID, where I've mentioned before, user experience has shifted more online and we see that across the board in Asia. That really contributed into our revenue. Our operating expenses, we've been doing very tight control since 2019. So our operating incentives have been falling, whether that's from a staff side impairments to running our general operating site. Revenue movements, really, the major contributions that we've seen is really coming from our distribution and trading business. That contributed a majority of our revenue in terms of increase. So we continue with driving... We'll continue to driving within that business aspect. And then we also achieved our first EBITDA profit last year, of about one million, $1.2 million, due to the shift in our business and a more aggressive cost control. And going forward, we'll continue to drive towards that, in that trajectory, by trying to improve our margins more significantly.

So where are we going to go now, going forward? Really, the first focus for business is really to shift into capturing more opportunities around the B2B trading. We find that ourselves, as a trader, as a business, we understand how difficult it is to trade internationally, especially in Asia, whether that's in China or Southeast Asia. And that comes across whether it's managing international freight that manages payment, vetting of buyers, handling order management and, actually, local deliveries, and getting visibility and transparency of where, actually, the products are being sold so that you're actually getting price control and actually marketing your brand a lot more successfully in those new markets.

So the idea is, we launched a platform called JJX in the mid of this year around May, and the idea is to become a one-stop B2B trading platform. Now, the market that we launched first is in China, given that our offline retail footprint in China is more significant. We have over 3000 offline retail stores that we have access to. And then, basically, we allow this platform for brands from Australia or from around the world that want to enter into these new markets. They can register an account, put their products on, and then be able to get access into the distribution network that we established. Our distributors, on the other end, will be able to see what products are available, put in the order that they want, and then eCargo, in between, provides all the services. So whether that's payment handling, vetting, the freights and logistics, importation, that's where we provide the services to support the brands from Australia or from other markets to enter into China.

The second focus is still to drive e-commerce enablement, given the shift from consumers to online now. We're seeing a lot more demand of retailers and brands that really want to improve their online shopping experiences. Whether that is setting up the shops on marketplaces in China or Asia or setting up their own dedicated platforms on Salesforce Commerce Cloud or BigCommerce, we continue to invest into resourcing, into building a team to support that. Now, within eCargo, within all the different franchises, we have over 130 people across Sydney, Hong Kong, and China, and Vietnam. That's really supports our brand to set up their online business, more successfully, trading and, more successfully, in these platforms.

Again, go back to our technology route, eCore OS, we'll continue to invest into our technology side. And we're going to build across eCore OS to offer more services within the value chain. So that is, whether it's from the logistic and fulfillment, and giving more visibility, and helping our brands and retailers to digitalise their logistic solutions, to providing order and sales visibility across multiple platforms to continue driving that. And then lastly, is really around consumer-facing technologies. Using eCore OS to develop further platforms to really help, whether that's on JJX platform or set up on B2C platform, for consumers to actually acquire from the brands that we're working with.

So going forward, and this had been really our strategy and this really summarizes what we've been trying to do this year and for next year, is number one, I've mentioned before, the B2B trading side digitalisation of those processes. B2B trading has always been very manual, very offline, very inefficient in a way, you would say. We're going to try to digitalize it across all different steps along the way with our B2B platform.

Second is really improving our margins. As we go into more distribution and trading and really supporting our brand partners to trade online and offline, we really want to drive further margins that we can create under the product categories. And that's really shifting to categories like beauty, cosmetics, health supplements. That's where we're going to drive a lot of revenue or, sorry, margins across our business.

And the third is regional expansion. As I've mentioned, right now, we're currently trading in China, Vietnam, and Cambodia, Malaysia. We would like to expand into more Southeast Asian countries to really help Australian brands get into those markets a lot easier and to get quicker pace. So that's where we will continue to expand.

And then lastly, is to develop more supply chain technologies. Given that the logistic business, sorry, logistic industry right now, it's right for change and right for digitalisation of it. Giving more visibility around rates, making onboarding processes a lot more efficient, finding providers and those services a lot easier, this is where we will aim to continue to drive value for the business.

So with that said, there's any questions, please see the contacts here on the slide. We'll be welcome to answer any questions around our business. Thank you.


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