A year of moving forward
During our 15th fiscal period (ended January 2019), new marketing mix measures proved effective and several indicators dramatically improved, including the number of new members, number of active members and repeat customer rate. Both total transaction volume and operating income reached record highs, while the achievement rate was 110% for net sales and 123% for operating income — both significantly higher than the full-year forecast.
For new members, we introduced new payment methods to promote more purchases. For existing members, we updated the BUYMA app to improve the action rate. This contributed to increased purchases and higher repeat rates by existing members. Furthermore, as a measure for personal shoppers, we improved selling and posting functionality, which raised contracts per seller.
BUYMA has traditionally focused on women’s fashion, but the transaction volume for men’s fashion has steadily grown. In our 15th fiscal period, male fashion accounted for over 30% of items sold. I feel there is still plenty of room for growth.
To our ALL-IN service for selling unwanted items we added a new Sokuwari service that provides discounts in return for used products previously purchased via BUYMA. It was a major challenge, but we succeeded in increasing the number of ALL-IN transactions to 1.6 times the previous year.
By shifting our target from Hong Kong to the USA, and changing our marketing and product lineup, we raised the volume of GLOBAL BUYMA transactions to 163% that of the previous year. In a single year, the average unit price of products sold in the USA increased by 1.59 times and BUYMA continues to gain affluent customers there. Although it has not yet reached a single month of profit, the outlook is good for increasing customers. By implementing measures to improve convenience, we expect to see further growth in the future.
Through these and other measures, BUYMA has achieved steady overall growth and a total transaction value of 45.5 billion yen (23% growth year-on-year).
In the 16th fiscal period (ending January 2020), we will refine our marketing mix to further improve its effectiveness and efficiency. We will also continue strengthening men’s fashion, which achieved great results in the 15th period, and continue improving our selling functions.
GLOBAL BUYMA will continuously become more convenient for overseas users and more efficient at attracting customers, with the aim of achieving a profit.
Following a beta period this fiscal term, we will finally launch an independent site for BUYMA TRAVEL, which originally launched in July 2018. The travel market is huge and is expected to grow at much higher rates than other industries over the next 10 years.
With BUYMA TRAVEL, we’re not just aiming for modest success; we expect it to transcend BUYMA in scale.
During this period, we will strive to achieve market capitalization of 100 billion yen by powering up BUYMA, our main engine, and making several sub-engines we’ve been working on for years operate more efficiently. This year, we are positioned to reach a new level as a company capable of achieving stable, high growth.
Finally, I would like to share some of what we hope to achieve through BUYMA.
Thanks to technological innovation and IT, our lives are entering a less stressful era where literally everything — from when we wake up in the morning until we go to bed at night — will be less expensive, more convenient and easier to use.
On the other hand, with daily life becoming so convenient and routine, we may spend more money and time on special things such as exciting experiences and objects that simply bring us joy.
Rather than all-genre shopping malls and flea markets that sell anything, we believe highly specialized marketplaces dedicated to certain fields are best at handling goods and services that meet strong individual preferences. We call such marketplaces a “specialty market place” and as the name implies, it involves specialization. BUYMA is a specialty market place that specializes in fashion and travel.By specializing in fields, we are able to offer outstanding hospitality and reliability. For example, we offer great customer service, high-level product knowledge when handling problems, an easier-to-use UI/UX, accurate and relevant evaluation systems, and more. This market place allows highly specialized individuals and companies to offer a rich variety of the latest products from all over the world.
The world is full of wonderful and fun things. Through the specialty market place we call BUYMA, we are creating “a new channel that will change the world” by providing diverse options and special experiences that help people around the world to realize new lifestyles.
Shokei Suda, CEO