A major step towards digital transformation for the nationwide retailer
For most businesses, the lockdown came with an ultimatum: shutter operations, or move it online. But the latter isn’t as simple as it sounds, particularly with the narrow window retailers had before the ECQ was imposed. The initial reaction to the pandemic saw consumers focus on necessities and forgo discretionary spending. But as the public gets accustomed to “the new normal,” businesses may soon be able to recognize the demand they had two months ago.
For Robinsons Malls, its partnership with on-demand services provider MyKuya is a step toward reconnecting with the retail giant’s customers — without them having to leave their homes — and offer a way for its tenants to begin recovery and be prepared to go digital in the post-pandemic landscape.
With the MyKuya app, users can now shop Robinsons Malls’ offerings and stay at home while Kuyas and Ates (the app’s partner talents) pick up their items for them. MyKuya’s initial premise of running errands for users has become highly popular during the ECQ: from food deliveries, to grocery runs, PasaBuys (personal shopping), and even standing in line for users on payment queues, the app continues to add more services to address users’ needs during the lockdown.
This has helped introduce the benefits of digital platforms to new users, and more ways to reconcile life and tech to digital-natives — an opportunity for its partner retailers to get a leg up in the digital space, which has undeniably come into focus during the pandemic. And even post-COVID-19, the results of this shift to digital is more than likely to persist, challenging brick-and-mortar retailers further. But with MyKuya, these businesses can find a way to serve customers digitally.
“The high demand for MyKuya’s services has been really promising for the business case of utilizing digital platforms,” MyKuya’s founder, Shahab Shabibi, said. “We want our partners to be able to tap into its potential as well. Brick-and-mortar retailers need to rapidly meet the demands of the online economy and we provide a solution to move them into digital in a matter of hours, instead of months.”
The partnership between MyKuya and Robinsons Malls’ is a push for the nationwide retailer’s digital transformation efforts, mirroring parent company JG Summit’s own ventures in its aim to be the country’s top digital conglomerate. Some of these efforts include the conglomerate’s own data services firm Digital Analytics Ventures that it launched just last year, a content and livestreaming app, Kumu, that recently raised around $5 million in Series A funding, and the group’s very own Digital Transformation Office, which spearheads transformation projects such as the “overhaul” of the Malls’ sister company Robinsons Land’s Hotels and Resorts’ booking systems.
For the mall operator, MyKuya represented a way for offline retail to go live quickly — the app took retail operators live and online in less than 24 hours.
The effects of the pandemic has forced most people to stay inside and businesses to close or move online, affecting day-to-day life deeply. But not everything needs to be put on hold while the lockdown continues. To address this, several businesses have stepped up — and teamed up — such as MyKuya with Robinsons Malls. This collaboration, among others penned by the app, has allowed its partners to continue serving customers amid the pandemic and support their digital transformation further as they meet old and new customers online.
“It has always been one of MyKuya’s goals to help other businesses find their place online,” said Shabibi. “With the app, our partner retailers can continue business in the digital space and help their ventures into a mobile-first market develop, and for others, it’s a real opportunity for a strong start.”
Headquartered in BGC, MyKuya is an on-demand service provider that matches users with its talents (Kuyas and Ates) that can assist them on a variety of daily errands and other services such as deliveries, grocery shopping, and more.
MyKuya was founded in 2017 by Machine Ventures.