Korean Electronics Giant Sees Growth in Cambodia

LG Electronics has identified Cambodia as the emerging market in ASEAN with the greatest potential for increasing sales and is expanding its business here, a senior executive of the South Korean company told Khmer Times last week at the LG InnoFest 2016 Asia in Seoul.

Chris Yi, the company’s CEO for Asia, said it would work closely with its Cambodian partner to expand sales.

“Cambodia offers great potential for LG so we will continue to expand in the market to grow together with our partner there,” Mr. Yi said, adding that the two companies would work “to make the LG brand bigger and bigger in the market.”

Mr. Yi said LG had a strong foundation in ASEAN and was focusing on expanding its presence in ASEAN’s emerging markets, which include Laos and Myanmar, as well as Cambodia.

Sek Rom, merchandise manager at Kfour Group, one of the biggest electronic dealers in Cambodia, told Khmer Times on the sidelines of the tradeshow in Seoul last week that the market for electronic products in Cambodia is expanding 10 to 15 percent annually. He put this growth down to rising incomes and the inflow of foreign investment.

“We have seen over the last few years that sales of electronic products keep increasing,” Mr. Rom said, adding that the economy was growing at an annual rate of 7 percent.

Television sets, air-con units and refrigerator are the top three products for sale, he said.

Vincent Tan, market development manager for Singapore-based Sunsimexco Electronics, which distributes Akira, Sony and Panasonic products in Cambodia, also put the fast growth in sales of electronic products down to rising living standards.

“With the middleclass expanding sales are rising,” Mr. Tan said. Consumers are also moving to more sophisticated products, he said, noting that there was a shift from color television sets to large-screen liquid crystal display (LCD) units. LGD is now introducing its organic light-emitting diode (OLED) model to the Cambodian market, Mr. Tan said.

Cambodians spent more than $45 million on flat-screen televisions between April 2014 and March 2015, up about 40 percent from the year-before period, according to the Singapore office of global research firm GfK, which said the number reflected rising incomes among the middle class.

GfK research also found that sales of new smartphones in Cambodia fell 6 percent in volume in the second quarter of last year, though their value rose 11 percent – from $76.4 million to $84.9 million. It said 211,000 units were sold in the second quarter of last year, down from 225,000 units in the second quarter of 2014, but the average price of new smartphones rose 18 percent.

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