|A delivery person transports goods in HCM City. Shopkeepers in traditional markets and other businesses in the city are finding ways to stay afloat and even thrive amid the COVID-19 pandemic by networking and using online channels. – Photo thanhnien.vn|
HCM CITY — Many HCM City businesses, even small traders in traditional markets who are not usually thought to be tech-savvy, have been focusing on selling online and networking to survive, or even thriving, amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Sellers in traditional markets are networking with "other businesses" to survive the pandemic. Trần Xuân Trang, who owns a stall in Bến Thành Market in District 1, said she is preparing for the Mid-Autumn festival in September and working with business partners who can deliver goods to customers.
A trader at the Hóc Môn Wholesale Market, which remains closed, has been selling a steady amount of pork daily to regular buyers online.
Traders are making use of social media to advertise their goods.
Nguyễn Thị Ngọc Hà, deputy head of management of District 5’s An Đông Market, said while the market has been closed, it has been helping its tenants sell online by creating a webpage and helping them connect with social media groups.
More and more traditional markets are helping their traders similarly.
Some small traders are even looking into exporting.
Ngô Bích Lài, owner of a stall at An Đông Market, told Tuổi Trẻ (Youth) newspaper that she has been exporting products such as coffee and bird’s nest to China and Singapore by networking with export companies and social media groups for overseas Vietnamese.
Others are in contact with foreign visitors who had bought from them when they visited Việt Nam.
Large businesses are using the pandemic to restructure their operations.
A rice supply business even created a mobile application last November for online sales. It is now supplying dozens of tonnes of rice every month in HCM City.
Trần Văn Trường, director of Royal Seafood Company, said his company has nine stores with staff living on-site focusing on online selling. While the sales are admittedly not as high as before, they are also supplying and delivering cooked meals to customers.
Trương Chí Thiện, director of egg supplier Vĩnh Thành Đạt Company, said the pandemic has provided a great opportunity to set up an online channel for selling eggs and move away from focusing solely on direct selling.
HCM City is the country's current and largest COVID epicentre of the country with more than 135,000 cases by yesterday morning since the fourth outbreak began in late April. VNS