The AWS ASEAN Summit kicked off with Conor McNamara, Managing Director ASEAN, AWS highlighting how AWS has helped customers in the region to survive and thrive in the new normal as well as the trends that bringing growth to the region. Indeed, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge impact on the way we do things from work to leisure.
According to Conor, AWS customers in ASEAN were able to pivot their business fast to adapt to the changes, such as StoreHub who launched a food delivery app in three days to meet the changing customer habits. Customers were also able to build on their business resiliency with AWS Cloud, increase cost savings with the elasticity of AWS Cloud and scale seamlessly to cater to more customers.
The three trends in ASEAN seeing positive growth for AWS include their work with startups, enterprises, independent software vendors (ISVs), small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) and the public sector.
“At AWS, startups are our earlier adopters. We remain very proud of our strong startup heritage, and the role we have played in the success of so many ASEAN unicorns including Grab, Traveloka and Tokopedia,” said Conor.
He added that AWS is also working with upcoming unicorns like Razor and Zilingo to build their business as well as partnering with startups like Pomelo Fashion, Happy Fresh and iSTOX.
ASEAN enterprises are also accelerating their adoption of AWS Cloud especially in the diversification of the type of workloads they are using the cloud for. For example, AWS is working with Singtel to expand its 5G capabilities using AWS Outposts and Singapore Stock Exchange who are using Amazon Managed Blockchain to build an innovative payment solution that will reduce trade settlement time by up to 60%.
For ISVs, Conor explained that ASEAN is emerging as a key player in the SaaS revolution. Driven by 1.6 million software developers in the region, AWS is seeing an increasing trend of ASEAN ISVs serving global customers such as ViSenze which delivers AI/ML retail solutions for Samsung and Rakuten.
“We’re delighted to play a role in supporting these organisations to build market-leading SaaS-based offerings, at disruptive price points, while also supporting these ASEAN ISVs scale internationally through focused go-to-market campaigns.”
SMBs are also leveraging on AWS to reduce the undifferentiated heavy lifting in running their business. Conor said that AWS is committed to digitising a million SMBs in ASEAN over the next three years. Together with their partners, AWS aims to provide easy-to-use and packaged solutions that can help accelerate SMBs digitalisation agenda.
Lastly, in the public sector, AWS has had a thriving business and powerful impact in the region. This included work with telehealth platforms like Doctor Anywhere who have been able to manage patient data securely as well as deliver better patient experience with AWS.
“What does this all mean? With this level of momentum, across these diverse customer segments, we are home for all of ASEAN’s builders,” said Conor.
Transforming successfully with AWS
The AWS ASEAN summit also featured success stories of several customers in the region. From telco to finance to oil and gas, these organisations were able to adopt quickly during the pandemic to not only meet increasing customer demands but also improve their business agility in the new normal. Here’s what some of them had to say.
XL Axiata – Yessie Yosetya, Chief Information and Digital Officer of XL Axiata explained how the company is pursuing to double their productivity and have 15% cost savings in five years by leveraging on the public cloud. Among all the data that has moved to AWS, some applications are already running in the cloud. Two of their mobile applications are using Amazon EKS. For customer-related functions, they also migrated their business process system including SAP for HANA in AWS and were able to launch the module within 7 to 14 days after contract signing. They also migrated several other workloads with AWS.
“As an Indonesian company, XL Axiata must comply to the Indonesian government’s data localisation requirements for PII data. With AWS launching locally, we will be able to move more workloads to the public cloud in the future. In the future, we plan to have broader applications on the cloud by leveraging on automation and AI, big data analytics and digital servicing and digitised processes,” said Yessie.
Union Bank of the Philippines – Dr. Justo A Ortiz, Vice Chairman, Union Bank of the Philippines, shared the bank’s transformation journey which includes six pillars that are culture, strategy, space, process, people and partnerships. With more than 15 million Filipinos unbanked or underbanked, Union Bank had to reimagine existing processes to be a low-cost producer. Their strategy was focused on building platforms all on the cloud by default. This included a cloud-based blockchain-enabled platform which linked rural banks into a single network where value is exchanged through PHX, the bank’s stablecoin. They were able to connect rural banks and cooperatives to the national retail payment system.
“With the volume, velocity and variety of structured and unstructured data coming into our systems, we are able to collect, store, organise, analyse and insight for next best offers and personalised solutions by applying data science and AI to improve revenue streams in a customer-centric manner. The long term goal is to hyper-personalise at scale and democratise banking. This is only possible in a cloud-enabled environment with the help of our partner AWS,” said Dr.Justo.
Petronas – The oil and gas industry took a massive hit during the pandemic with crude oil prices dropping significantly with oversupply. To deal with this, Petronas has to embark on a journey to reinvent their business strategies and opportunities. According to Datuk Md Arif Mahmood, EVP & CEO Downstream, Petronas, as demand for fossil fuel continues to decline, they had to adopt quickly to the normal and rethink their business model and portfolio. They needed to perform and transform.
“We collaborate with AWS and others on data lakes and analytics projects like DAF, where we de-siloed the organisation through data transparency to achieve most optimised cost to sell across the total value chain to facilitate competitive pricing and segmentation of one. Through DAF, we have completely altered the way our sales team interact with the customers, making them ahead of competitors,” said Datuk Md Arif.
He added they also work with AWS on several other solutions to serve their customers better.
Aviva Singlife – For Santosh Gon, Chief Information Officer, Aviva Singlife, the insurance industry continues to adapt to new technologies to not only improve the customer experience but also improve the productivity of their remote workers. While more customers are demanding better and faster options online and in claim processing, Santosh mentioned that they are now focusing on using technology to enable their employees to be better in their digital offering.
“We had to quickly adjust our contact centres to meet the new demands. We partnered with AWS for Amazon Connect, not only to give flexibility to our staff in terms of handling any situations but also to enable the teams to deliver a more consistent and a greater customer experience as well,” said Santosh.