The Emerging Global Web

The web was first conceived 25 years ago, by an Englishman. Fifteen years later, as the first crop

  1. yiibu
    The web was first conceived 25 years ago, by an Englishman. Fifteen years later, as the first crop
    Transcript Header:
    The Emerging Global Web
    Transcript Body:
    • global web the emerging
    • the web was first conceived 25 years ago...
    • an Englishman Source: CERN
    • ...the initial concept was revised with the help of a Belgian computer scientist... Source: Wikipedia Robert Cailliau
    • built in France (!)... and the first web site finally Courtesy: Google Maps Source: Exact location where the web was invented
    • and hosted on a computer designed in California... Source: Wikipedia (note the critically important “do NOT power down” sticker)
    • ...but within the walls of a Swiss research institute
    • fifteen years on...
    • as the first crop of dot.coms went bust...
    • 30% North America 29% Europe 19% Japan/Korea 2% Australia 13% rest of Asia 5% LATM 1% Middle East 1% Africa most of the internet’s users came from developed economies Source: Internet world stats - Internet users by region, 2000, per the IMF definition of “developed” in 2000)
    • 1. U.S.A. 2. U.S.A. 3. U.S.A. 4. S. Korea 5. S. Korea 6. S. Korea 7. U.S.A. 8. Japan 9. U.S.A. 10. U.S.A. did all the traffic on the Alexa “top 10”. Source:, Sept 2000, via Wayback Machine
    • today, the situation is quite different....
    • Internet penetration nears saturation in developed economies... Internet Population and Penetration
    • 5. Baidu (China) 7. QQ (China) 11. Taobao (China) 13. 14. Sina (China) 10. hao123 (China) 17. Weibo (China) 20. Yandex (Russia) ...and traffic from fast growing emerging economies such as China, India, and Russia now makes up almost half of the Alexa “top 20”. Source:, April 2014
    • Source: Age of Man - interactive map, National Geographic close to 3 billion of us have yet to use the internet...
    • Xiaomi Hongmi yet thanks to devices such as this, won’t have to wait much longer to discover it... (...within a year, similar devices will cost half this much) Android platform £83 ($130) built & designed in China
    • but the internet the next billion will discover isn’t quite like “ours”...and that’s what we’re going to discuss today
    • begin this story by talking which is why we’ll about sheep...
    • ...on Instagram
    • “…if you have an Instagram account, you can slap a tag on anything, take a picture of it, and sell it...” – Fatima Al Qadiri, Mousse magazine
    • you know—hacked products.” She sells dried fruit. A friend’s cousin is selling weird potted plants...people are creating, – Fatima Al Qadiri, Mousse magazine “...even my grandmother has an Instagram business.
    • Instagram businesses are particularly popular in Kuwait (for some unknown reason...)
    • more than 10,000 similar businesses are powered by Facebook... but over in Thailand,
    • businesses such as these provide a glimpse informal economy... of a new, digital and mobile-fuelled the last few 1000 years of “informal economy” has looked something like this
    • they’re still relatively ad-hoc... no shopping cart or online form, just contact her using your mobile and a popular social messaging app are a bit different...on the one hand these new kinds of “informal” business
    • and poses a new level of sophistication... orders shipped daily by courier with tracking number yet they are modern, global,
    • follow on Instagram contact on mobile and WhatsApp the goat man has fans! gotta love the q8animals hashtag!
    • These services don’t offer “a great experience” but are ”good enough” and offer a good balance of reach, effort, functionality and adaptability to local circumstances. They also fill an important gap... 83% of Thai internet users use Facebook Facebook even works on his crappy old phone she can manage the “site” and respond to inquiries on mobile while sitting here all day the motorcycle taxi around the corner can make quick deliveries if needed
    • “...most of these pages see their largest growth out in the countryside, where the population is largely underserved by other e-tailers as well as brick-and-mortar shops” – Thailand’s powerful wave of Facebook commerce
    • but reaching the underserved doesn’t merely apply to large rural populations...
    • China has 14 cities with populations over five million...
    • ...a whopping 41 cities with more than 2 million inhabitants
    • ...and a middle class growing at a rate of 80,000 people a day Source: China Connect
    • rural residents can be hard reaching China’s 600 million
    • its close to 700 million urban residents but opening enough stores to service can be outrageously expensive (or downright implausible)
    • so to many Chinese, shopping online isn’t so much an electronic version of commerce, it *is* commerce, pure and simple
    • ...and using their mobile to do so isn’t just a modern alternative to using a PC, it’s their primary (or sometimes only) means of using the internet
    • Chinese e-commerce is also different in one very important way...
    • 76% of online retail involves individual merchants of online retail is sold through online marketplaces 90% Source: The Economist
    • China’s giant, virtual marketplaces enable buyers and sellers to find themselves a modern virtual version of this like public markets and town centres,
    • The largest marketplace is Alibaba’s Tmall. With more than 180 million customers, Tmall contains products from more than 150,000 merchants and 200,000 well known brands.
    • Tmall charges an entry fee, and a commission for each sale, but in return provides a high visibility, high traffic, customizable, social- media and mobile optimized e-commerce platform.
    • For major brands such as Apple, hosting a virtual storefronts on TMall is a good alternative to opening hundreds (or possibly thousands) of brick and mortar stores across the country.
    • Alibaba also offers a C2C site called Taobao, which enables consumers (and smaller merchants) to sell products online. Taobao is a bit like EBay, but vendors aren’t limited to selling things...
    • They can also sell services: This Taobao-based travel agent doesn’t just sell you a trip, they can also arrange a travel visa, sell you a Thai 3G SIM card, a wi-fi dongle, a subway pass, or local transportation.
    • C2C and B2C commerce on Taobao T-Mall merchants pay a commission and an entry fee we’ll discuss this bit later...!TaoBao merchants don’t pay to sell stuff, they buy advertising and other services to help them stand out and“A mix of , with a dash of .”
    • This family of sites enables consumers to shop for a huge range of products that might otherwise never be available in their region. (And yes...Tmall can sell you a new Peugeot...or a Lamborghini).
    • “...such is Taobao’s success these days that running a “Taobao shop” is a national pastime, sort of like a second job or hobby for tens of thousands of Chinese office workers, housewives, and students”. - Owning a Taobao shop is a new national hobby
    • For many people however, it’s far more than a hobby. These sites have enabled millions of new jobs—especially in smaller towns or rural areas where residents can now sell their locally made products or produce to an audience of billions.
    • 1 million by the end of 2012 more than T-Mall and Taobao stores were registered in rural areas Source: CNN
    • one half T-Mall & Taobao also accounted for more than of all parcel deliveries in China Source: CNN
    • the Chinese marketplace model has already slipped beyond its borders...
    • “...most of the people have phones but there are only 3 malls per 20 million inhabitants... It’s a unique time...the right time to leapfrog over ‘offline’.” - co-founder THE BIGGEST ONLINE SHOPPING MALL IN AFRICA Egypt | Kenya | Uganda| Ivory Coast| Nigeria | Morocco
    • Access to marketplaces is creating opportunities for Western micro-businesses, that can now source materials directly from factories around the world. Julie sources cake decorating supplies direct from China using Alibaba and sells them to customers around the world using Etsy Hi! My name is Julie, I live in the Bay Area and I am the owner of Cakes And Kids. I am wife, mother and entrepreneur and I am forever grateful that I get to do what I love every day!
    • Small and mid-size companies in emerging economies are also taking advantage of western platforms to reach western customers with unique and often personalized products. family business 5 people 1 designer, 2 tailors clothes advertised on Etsy and made to order delivery in 1-2 wks Kelans Art Couture, Foshan, China
    • Chinese entrepreneurs in Western markets, or “online shopping agents” in China are also acting as middlemen, shipping hard to find (or highly taxed) Western goods to Asia, then re-selling them on sites such as Taobao. “... even if [Western] retailers or consumer product companies haven’t stepped foot in mainland China, their products are already here. Unofficially.” - Think your brand is not for sale in China yet?
    • This is creating a new and fast-growing group of highly globalized digital-first consumers. Consumers who live in one region, but actively shop or seek out products from another.
    • but with millions of vendors in consumers find products they truly want? these giant marketplaces, how can
    • “Meet Jing Jing is an affluent young Chinese girl who started blogging about her life and style while studying abroad in the UK. She is now your competition”. Source: 青年志 | Open Youthology
    • “She’s a marketer. Her Weibo micro-blog now has over 28,000 followers. She blogs about her life, her style and tips for beauty and fashion”. Source: 青年志 | Open Youthology
    • “She’s a retailer. Her Taobao shop offers copies of luxury products she wears on her blog. All her products are limited edition and priced low. It usually takes her a couple of hours to sell out”. Source: 青年志 | Open Youthology
    • Jing promotes products but uses Taobao to transact on her blog and social media,
    • The millions of people without Jing’s time or commitment can instead sign up for an account at an “online shopping neighbourhood”.
    • “Online shopping neighbourhoods are online destinations created by social media, where consumers can explore a curated selection of choices”. 青年志 | Open Youthology
    • one of the largest sites is Meilishuo with over 32 million users, (which means “beauty talk”)
    • Sourrce: Technode and Pando Daily 5-6 million Meilishuo generates clicks for online merchants per day £300 million ...and in 2012 generated an estimated ($500M) in revenue for downstream merchants Similar to an online travel agent, Meilishuo gets a cut for each outbound transaction it generates....
    • If you think this sounds kind of boring, because it’s all about girls discussing shoes, imagine translating this model to geeks talking about gadgets, or fans talking about books...
    • Part of the reason these services work, is that they feed into the virtuous circle of mobile and social media adoption. Source: The internet economy in the G20 (PDF) Developing markets are going “straight to social” Users adopt social networking quickly as they come online
    • China *loves* social media
    • ...but the most popular social media services in China aren’t just “sites”—they’re platforms...
    • one of the most popular (lately) is WeChat three years old 500 million users or Wēixìn - 微信 - in China mobile-only
    • “Literally every single person I know, everyone I’ve met in China, is on WeChat. I don’t use email, I don’t use the phone, I don’t use SMS to communicate with anyone – only WeChat.” Hugo Barra, VP Xiaomi Global (ex VP Android Product at Google) Photo:, watch the video interview from LeWeb 2013 on YouTube
    • (recorded) voice chat RSS-style subscription content mobile contact exchange highly customizable API payment platform text chat group text or video chat photo blogging mobile-only, and far more than just a messaging app virtual wallet
    • WeChat’s API is extensive, enabling brands to create “mini-sites” containing news, IVR style support or full-blown transactions through with WeChat’s virtual wallet and payment platforms. WeChat subscription channels API integration enables customizations such as sub- sections... download our app find nearby stores ...and product or service inquiries using an automated short messaging service here’s the stuff you can ask regarding coffee... “cappuccino” tell me about “coffee”
    • (if you’re looking for fragments of a “one web” philosophy, you’re sadly not going to find it here)
    • 5 million this Chinese New Year, more than people used WeChat to purchase 20 million virtual “Hongbao” (red envelopes containing money) in one 24 hour period Thanks to clever campaigns, WeChat wallet usage is rising fast! Source: TechInAsia
    • virtual wallets, mobile payment and alternative finance models are quite popular in emerging economies, as they help address a whole host of local challenges... 1/4 of adults across sub-Saharan Africa as a whole only have accounts at formal financial institutions less than of Indonesians have a credit card 15% Source: Wall Street Journal
    • In countries such as Kenya, India and the Philippines, entirely virtual banks such as MPESA enable customers to send and receive money, or pay for goods and services on or offline using even the most basic mobile phone.
    • Indonesia, consumers can also choose to pay for in countries such as China, Nigeria and online purchases using cash on delivery
    • with so much commerce taking place on giant marketplaces, there is also a natural fear of counterfeits
    • To increase trust, Alibaba created Alipay, an online payment platform (like PayPal) that also doubles as an escrow service and only releases payment once goods have been received and accepted by shoppers.
    • With more than 800 million registered users, Alipay is now so common that it can be used to pay for almost anything—including school fees and loans, utility and mobile phone bills and even hospital charges.
    • T-Money - Korea launched in 2004 Octopus - Hong Kong launched in 1997(!) Some of these “pay for everything” platforms are now decades old... starting with one “mobile” technology, then migrating to progressively more modern (or relevant) ones as they come along. contactless card wristbands keychains NFC/QR enabled apps (PC) dongles SIM integration contactless card keychains NFC/QR enabled apps (PC) dongles AliPay integration SIM integration 20 million cards in circulation (for 7 million people) 71 million cards in circulation (for 50 million people)
    • ...and when you’ve run out of real things to pay for virtually...why not invent a few virtual things to pay for...
    • Meet—a giant “Google Hangouts” style platform with over 300 million users and 11 million channels, and programs ranging from karaoke, to “talk radio” and educational topics.
    • Unlike YouTube or Skype— YY has it’s own virtual currency. Users purchase credits from the site and use these to show affection for their favourite stars by buying them virtual gifts such as roses and lollipops. Gifts range in cost from mere pennies to as much as $50 (£35).
    • “top Karaoke singers regularly make $20K (£15K) a month off of virtual gifts, with one college student reportedly earning an astonishing $188K (£150K) per month using the site to give Photoshop lessons” - The largest social network you’ve never heard of
    • ...meanwhile in Korea, 1000s tune in to AfreecaTV, a similar service where Choi Ji-hwan earns about 2 million S. Korean won ($1,880) each month eating mountains of noodles and kimchi live each night Source: Iamkorean
    • In most cases, mobile devices are the glue that tie these platforms, services and communities together...
    • WeChat has for example, built much of its functionality around the QR code
    • WeChat automatically generates a QR code for each account. To follow a person or brand, simply scan the code (on a device, business card, poster, web site etc.) (WeChat even provide templates enabling personalization of the code to suit your personality or your brand.)
    • This reliance on QR codes works, because in China (and many other parts of Asia) almost every app (including locally built web browsers!) has a built in QR code reader. Qunar (travel brand) Baidu web browserTaobao
    • Some Chinese-made Android smartphones even have QR and WeChat recognition built right into into the camera. (In Japan, where QR codes were invented, manufacturers added this capability close to 10 years ago.) the Xiaomi Mi3 camera
    • using QR codes to interact and transact with brands has therefore become common ( might say mundane) These college students sell fruit on person, but also through WeChat.
    • WeChat, AliBaba and other platforms are also working with department stores and other “offline” goods merchants to extend their reach—enabling customers to purchase goods in store by scanning QR codes on products. ...kind of like this John Lewis and Barclay Card concept... except that 300 million people have a WeChat account, and 800 million have an Alipay account.
    • these brands and consumers aren’t merely “leapfrogging” desktop, or finance, or physical retail...
    • in mobile transactions in 2013 25 billion in mobile transactions in 2013 150 billion (Alipay) they inhabit a giant rapid-prototype of our future... Source: Business Insider
    • a future inhabited by people for whom the words “offline”, “online” and “mobile” have become irrelevant
    • with little baggage to weigh them down, they can ignore what’s “normal” and turn constraints into opportunities
    • ...the cool thing about prototypes, is that they’re allowed to be a little crazy...
    • Russian e-commerce brand Lamoda has turned poor postal infrastructure into an excuse to try something that seems completely un-scaleable...
    • “...Lamoda sends sales assistants directly to shoppers’ homes...uniformed delivery men bring the clothes, wait for [customers] to try them on, offers fashion advice, take returns and process payments on the spot” - Russia: Where the Deliveryman Gives Fashion Advice
    • Korea, grocery stores are embedded on Subway platforms where users scan QR codes to buy items that are delivered just-in-time for dinner
    • China, online grocery chain Yihaodian cleverly positioning them in high traffic locations such as the Forbidden City launched 1000 virtual reality branches in one day, - Watch the campaign video
    • “Why build expensive roads to remote rural locations when drones can do the job just as well? - Forget Amazon: Drone delivery will take off in Africa meanwhile in Africa...
    • (...combine drones with Lamoda’s up-selling at your doorstep and things could get interesting...)
    • and the internet have already the rise of mobile changed our world beyond recognition
    • no one can predict what will happen next...
    • what we do know, is that in the future the opportunities will be more global than they’ve *ever* been (even Oreos aren’t sacred)
    • to meet tomorrow’s challenges, and compete in this giant marketplace...
    • we should always remember that what may seem futuristic to us...
    • The Economist: The next frontier “To Westerners, ‘mobile banking’ is a new way of doing something old. To many Africans, it’s the obvious way of doing something new” may merely feel new and practical to others...
    • thank you many thanksto the amazing photographerson @yiibu contactus at Presentation deck available @
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  1. Giovanni Budicin
    Giovanni Budicin
    Version: 08/04/2014
    Thanks for sharing.
  2. Srikanth Bhakthan
    Srikanth Bhakthan
    Version: 08/04/2014
    @yiibu great work, happen to see it today.
  3. Wen Dombrowski MD MBA
    Wen Dombrowski MD MBA
    Version: 08/04/2014
    This is fantastic, insightful overview of ecommerce and other opportunities to leverage technology in emerging markets. Many thanks to Yiibu!
  4. Ali GURLEK
    Ali GURLEK
    Version: 08/04/2014
    Amazing report to show us what's really happening in the emerging world..
  5. Alex V
    Alex V
    Version: 08/04/2014
    @yiibu I finally managed to finish it! After some technical difficulties to respect the original layout as much as possible without the original file I published the resulting pdf here:
    Typefaces are gone but to compensate it translation is intended to be as smooth as possible for most spanish speakers. Hope it helps to spread the word about this topic. Thanks again for the great research!
  6. Angus Macdonald
    Angus Macdonald
    Version: 08/04/2014
    Great deck, thanks
  7. Sarit Chalamish
    Sarit Chalamish
    Version: 08/04/2014
    This is excellent. Thanks.
  8. bigden81
    Version: 08/04/2014
    Great presentation!
  9. nawinsky
    Version: 08/04/2014
    crazy staff imma loving this i tell you
  10. CINETIQUE Translations
    CINETIQUE Translations
    Version: 08/04/2014
    We know we live in a global world but reading it like this is truly amazing! Thank you for this presentation!