Online sales jumped 150% for Thailand's Index furniture chain

01, Jul. 2020

Image by Photo Mix from Pixabay
Image by Photo Mix from Pixabay

BANGKOK, NNA— Online sales for Thailand’s major furniture chain Index Living Mall Public Co. (Index) in the first quarter of 2020 soared to a high of 150 percent from the 31.5 million baht ($1 million) made during the same period of 2019.

Online shopping contributed 78.7 million baht to total sales during the first quarter as people began to stay and work at home mostly because of the coronavirus pandemic, said the company, which will expand e-commerce in view of the online shopping trend.

Overall, there was a spike in demand for home furniture, making up 67.8 percent of sales in the first three months, reported Index.

However, retail sales and services still reigned as the main revenue generator, contributing 80.6 percent or 1.67 billion baht to its total income. Q1 profit rose by 4 percent to 2.2 billion baht.

“When people spend more time at home, they start to observe the little details of their homes,” said Kritchanok Patthamasatyasonthi, managing director of Index in a video conference last week.

“They are willing to invest in comfort and often like to refurnish their home as they are buying more decorations and furniture,” she added.

There was also a rise in demand for household appliances and kitchenware as more people started baking and cooking at home.

Home office furniture including sofas and working desks have continued to be the company’s best-selling products. Sales of these went up 2.7 percent from the previous quarter as “more people were investing in quality home office furnishing products to prevent body aches during work from home implementation,” said Kritchanok.

During the pandemic lockdown, online business rose to almost 5 percent of total sales, up from 2 percent before the COVID-19 menace, Kritchanok told Bangkok Post.

Index will expand its online business as it expects online sales to continue to perform well, said its senior vice president, Ekkarak Patthamasatyasonthi.

The company will invest in technology to enhance its virtual stores and services to increase revenue in future, he added.

There are 31 Index Living Mall stores in Thailand apart from franchises abroad. Already opened in the kingdom after lockdown easing are shopping malls, fitness clubs, spas, traditional massage centres and cinemas.

All other businesses still suspended will be allowed to operate again from July 1. They include boxing stadiums and entertainment venues like karaoke outlets, bars and clubs.