Vietnam to be major driver of 15 billion baht sales
US direct-sales firm Nu Skin Enterprises expects to achieve 15 billion baht in sales from Asean in 2014, one year earlier than its target, due to a strong drive in Vietnam and good growth in markets including Thailand.
Pakapun Leevutinun, president of Thai and Vietnamese operations, said the Asean market contributes 25% of global sales.
Nu Skin’s Asean operation covers Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, Brunei and Vietnam.
“The Asean direct-selling market is very promising and will grow more when the Asean Economic Community takes place due to the rapid growth of middle-class people and robust economic expansion,” Ms Pakapun said.
Nu Skin Vietnam, launched in August 2012, could generate sales of 450 million baht in its first year, more than double the targeted 200 million. It plans to increase sales by 25% in the second year.
Major markets such as Malaysia and Thailand are expected to increase sales by 20% this year and will maintain their growth at this pace next year as well.
Ms Pakapun said Vietnam’s sharp sales growth reflects the fact that 57% of its population of 90 million are young working people. Its direct-sales business worth US$292 million in 2012 is still young with many opportunities.
Key international players in Vietnam are Amway, Herbal Life, Oriflame and Nu Skin, which have a combined market share of more than 70%.
The Vietnamese direct-sales market had the second-highest growth in Asean at 12% last year.
“Although Vietnam doesn’t have a direct-sales law, its government is strictly screening private operators as it wants to develop the overall industry. Moreover, Vietnamese people are eager to join the direct-sales business and be entrepreneurs,” Ms Pakapun said.
Nu Skin has 25,000 sales staff after only 13 months in Vietnam and will increase the number to 30,000 by the end of the year. Its headquarters are in Ho Chi Minh City and it has a branch in Hanoi. It plans to open a branch in Danang next year. Ms Pakapun said the Vietnamese unit’s business strategy is in line with Nu Skin’s global policy.
However, it can select products to suit the preferences and lifestyles of Vietnamese consumers. AgeLoc anti-ageing products contribute 65% of sales in Vietnam.
Ms Pakapun said the economic slowdown has affected Thailand’s entire direct-sales business but Nu Skin continues to grow. The Thai operation is confident of achieving its 2013 sales target of 2.5 billion baht.
Credit: Bangkok Post